It’s time again for New York’s regions to start getting their proposals ready in order to compete for a pot of economic development money from the state through the Regional Economic Development Council program. As you may know, the North Country has fared well in the competitive process since 2011, when Gov. Andrew Cuomo started the REDCs.
But this year, the Watertown Daily Times is reporting, our region’s success may make things tougher: Because the North Country was named a “Top Performer” in last year’s competition (it’s actually been a “Top Performer” for the last three years), it will be competing with last year’s four other top performers for one of two $25 million funding packages. The top two regions will each get that, and the other three will split $25 million.
A group of the five less successful regions from last year will compete for three packages of $25 million in economic development aid. North Country REDC co-chair and Clarkson University president Tony Collins told the paper that “they’re trying to help those who didn’t do well last year.”
The total pot is $150 million plus $70 million in tax credits. In evaluating regions’ applications for aid, the state says it will consider successful implementation of past plans, job creation and global exports. Collins told the paper he thinks the North Country’s in a good position because of its strong relationship with Canada.
Applications for REDC funding are due August 15, with awards likely to be announced near the end of the year.