County Wins 23M In Regional Economic Dev Council Grants
White Plains, NY - Westchester County won more than $23 million in Regional Economic Development Council grants, including $1 million for the county’s new iBio-NY Incubator at New York Medical College.The Mid-Hudson region was named as one of the top five “Best Plan Awardees” and received at total of $92.8 million for 84 projects out of a total of $730 million across the state.
“In such a highly competitive field, today’s recognition validates the promise of the iBio-NY incubator and our other projects as immediate and long-term job creators,” said County Executive Robert P. Astorino. “Thanks and congratulations go to the Mid-Hudson Regional Economic Development Council for all its hard work, vision and dedication to our region’s continued growth.”
Gov. Andrew Cuomo started the Regional Councils in 2011 as a way to redesign the state’s approach to economic development. The councils are designed to increase job creation and economic development by allowing the state’s 10 regions to develop strategic plans specifically tailored to their strengths and resources.
The Mid-Hudson region stretches from Westchester north into Sullivan and Dutchess counties. All projects awarded grants must use best efforts to reach the goal of 20 percent Minority and Women Business Enterprise participation.
This is the second year in a row that the iBio-NY incubator initiative was listed as a priority project worthy of funding. Last year, the inaugural year, the state awarded $4 million for the project.
The iBio-NY incubator will offer laboratory and office space as well as services for entrepreneurs and start-up biotechnology companies. Specialized workforce training for established biotechnology companies in the region will also be available through the incubator.
In addition to the construction jobs the project will create, it is expected that iBio-NY alone could create 140 full-time jobs and an additional 75 part-time jobs when it is completed.
“This whole process is about bringing jobs and investment to Westchester County,” said Laurence Gottlieb, Westchester County’s director of economic development and Mid-Hudson Regional Council board member. “The council doubled-down this year on uncovering projects that reflected a regional approach and targeted significant growth areas over the next decade, such as the life sciences and food and beverage. From our iBio biotech incubator project at New York Medical College to waterfront development in New Rochelle and Yonkers, our approach was comprehensive and strategic.”
Marsha Gordon, president and CEO of the Business Council of Westchester and a member of the Regional Economic Council Executive Committee, noted that funding to the Mid-Hudson this year increased 30 percent over the $66 million in grants received last year.
“This is a tremendous endorsement of the quality and economic impact of the projects in Westchester that were proposed for funding,” Gordon said. “Considering that literally hundreds of projects from across the state were submitted for funding, gaining a ‘Best In State’ designation and a 30 percent increase in funding is a testimony to the viability of the specific projects and the economic power of Westchester and the Mid-Hudson.”
During the selection process, Gov. Cuomo, Lt. Gov. Robert Duffy and a Strategic Implementation Assessment Team composed of state agency commissioners with Brookings Institution and senior staff traveled to every region of the state to view progress on projects that have received state funding, as well as assess projects included in the region’s 2012 application.
Highlights of the Westchester projects receiving grants include:
- $1 million to build an iBio-NY Incubator at New York Medical College in Valhalla. The incubator will offer laboratory and office space as well as services for entrepreneurs and start-up biotechnology companies and specialized workforce training for established biotechnology companies in the region.
- $1.5 million for the expansion of the Echo Bay Waterfront in New Rochelle that will reclaim current commercial/industrial land and provide access to the water's edge for city residents and regional communities alike. The project also includes new market rate and affordable rental housing with neighborhood retail opportunities, as well as more than five acres of public open space.
- $1 million for the preservation and redevelopment of the iconic 1904 Glenwood Power Plant on the Hudson River in Yonkers for a mixed-use program would create a social, business and cultural destination.
For a full list of grants, visit http://regionalcouncils.ny.gov/assets/documents/2012REDCbooklet.pdf.