Failure To Preserve Power For Jobs A Travesty

ONEONTA, 05/14/10 – State Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I-Oneonta) today said the pending expiration of ‘Power for Jobs’ will endanger thousands of upstate jobs created through the low-cost energy program.

“Upstate businesses are struggling to make ends meet, and now, thanks to inaction by the state assembly and the governor, another setback is on the horizon,” said Senator Seward.  “With the low-cost energy program ‘Power for Jobs’ set to run out at midnight Saturday, hundreds of businesses and non-profit groups will be faced with higher utility bills, jeopardizing thousands of jobs.”

The Power for Jobs program that provides low-cost energy to businesses across the state is set to expire on Saturday, May 15th because the assembly has not acted either to extend it or make it permanent.  Last week, the senate passed a bill that would make the program permanent.

“The business community has been treated to a host of new taxes and fees thanks to last year’s budget, which I opposed, and now a beneficial program is being abandoned,” Seward continued.  “Companies are packing up and moving out of our state, while others are going under thanks to the hostile business climate.  How can New York continue to call itself The Empire State ?” 

Senator Seward won approval for the Power for Jobs program in 1997 to help businesses and not-for-profit organizations lower their energy costs and protect jobs. Under the program, participants receive benefits either through discounts on electric rates or a cash rebate from the New York Power Authority (NYPA).

“Power for Jobs is a proven success.  We need to make this program permanent, providing the businesses community with stability and sending a message that we want to partner with you to create new jobs,” Seward concluded.