Upstaters Join Forces to Push for Comprehensive Revitalization Plan

Press Release

Date: Feb. 13, 2008

175 Business, Labor, and Agricultural Leaders Endorse Governor's Plan to Revive Upstate Economy

In Rochester today, Governor Eliot Spitzer stood with a growing coalition of Upstaters who support his comprehensive plan for revitalizing the Upstate economy. One hundred and seventy five leaders representing business, labor, and agricultural organizations throughout Upstate New York announced their support today for the Governor's $1 billion Revitalization Fund. Supporters gathered at the SUNY Brockport campus in downtown Rochester to endorse the administration's plan and affirm their commitment to creating a viable Upstate economy.

Less than one month after its creation, the Upstate Revitalization Fund has received endorsements from more than 300 leaders across the state. The support highlights the strong desire for the Fund, which would infuse badly-needed capital into the Upstate economy and position the region as an engine for economic growth and opportunity.

"Today's endorsements show the bipartisan, statewide desire to revitalize the Upstate economy," said Governor Spitzer. "The future of New York depends on a robust Upstate, which offers New Yorkers good jobs, affordable housing, the best education and strong communities. In other words, reasons to keep loving - and living - New York."

The Governor's Upstate Revitalization Plan is one of several initiatives in the Executive Budget designed to make the Upstate region more attractive to growing businesses and families by reducing the costs of doing business, making key investments in infrastructure, housing, transportation and parks, and making more capital available to businesses. The Governor plans to work with the State Legislature to build a consensus around the need for action.

The Governor has proposed a variety of initiatives under the Fund, including $350 million for "Regional Blueprints" to provide capital for creating development-ready sites, industrial parks, establishing small business loan programs, and supporting cutting edge research and job creation.

Other proposals which would be part of the Upstate Revitalization Fund include:

- $115 million for an expanded "City by City" strategy to include new projects and smaller cities so that economic development investments can be tailored to fit local needs and jumpstart local economies;
- $100 million dollars for Upstate housing and community development;
- $50 million for agricultural programs which form the bedrock of so many local economies throughout Upstate;
- $80 million to restore New York's state parks—a major asset when it comes to attracting business and creating livable communities; - $130 million for a variety of transportation projects; and
- $175 million for initiatives including expanded access to Universal Broadband, venture capital investments, and job creation.