Western New York REDC Awarded $67.3 Million for 109 Projects

December 20, 2019

Projects that will move forward as a result of Round IX of the Regional Council initiative include Centennial Park green infrastructure in Buffalo, Olean Community Theatre development project, a bike path extension in the City of North Tonawanda, National Comedy Center marketing campaign in Jamestown and Greenpac Mills capital projects in Niagara County

A full list of the 2019 REDC awards is available at www.regionalcouncils.ny.gov

As part of Round IX of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s Regional Council initiative, the Western New York Regional Economic Development Council (WNYREDC) was awarded $67.3 million for 109 projects that build on the region’s assets and invest in the future. The announcement, which supports projects in Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie and Niagara counties, was made Thursday in Albany.  The Western New York region has now been awarded $620.5 million cumulatively through nine rounds of the Regional Council initiative, in state support for 890 projects across the region.

Established in 2011 as a centerpiece of the Governor’s strategy to jumpstart the economy and create jobs, the Regional Councils replaced the state’s old top-down approach to economic development with one that is community-based and performance-driven. The initiative empowers communities, business and academic leaders, as well as members of the public in each region of the state, to develop strategic plans specifically tailored to their region’s unique strengths and resources to create jobs, improve quality of life and grow the economy.

“On behalf of the WNYREDC, I am proud to be taking home $67.3 million for Western New York to advance our locally-developed economic development strategies,” said WNYREDC Co-Chair and Buffalo State College President Katherine Conway-Turner.  “Governor Cuomo’s bottom-up approach to investing state resources is working – you can see and feel it across our communities.  I continue to be amazed by the dedication of our WNYREDC members, community leaders and project partners as we work together to build our region’s economic momentum.”

The Western New York region’s 2011 strategic plan, “A Strategy for Prosperity,” leverages the region’s strategic advantages in key industry sectors including advanced manufacturing, agriculture, bi-national logistics, energy, health & life sciences, higher education, professional services and tourism. The plan focuses on economic enablers that promote smart growth, prepare the workforce and foster a culture of entrepreneurship. 

The following Western New York projects are highlights of projects awarded funding in Round IX:

Allegany County

  • $1,000,000 to the Town of Caneadea to install effluent disinfection at the town’s wastewater treatment plant to improve water quality.
  • $1,000,000 to the Village of Wellsville to make needed improvements to its wastewater treatment plant.
  • $200,000 to Allegany County to establish the Allegany County Microenterprise Program.

Cattaraugus County

  • $287,000 to the Town of Allegany to make upgrades to Town Hall to improve accessibility for handicapped persons.
  • $200,000 to the Olean Community Theatre to acquire and develop the Temple B’nai Israel building into a state-of-the-art theatre.
  • $191,830 to the Town of Carrollton to install an ultraviolet disinfection system at the Limestone Wastewater Treatment Plant to improve the quality of effluent entering the Tunungwant Creek.

Chautauqua County

  • $2,940,000 to Empire State Brands to renovate a vacant food processing facility in Dunkirk to be used as a new a vertically-integrated growing, processing and packaging facility for the production of hops, malted barley, what, rye and other grain products.
  • $1,346,000 to the Gebbie Foundation to acquire and redevelop the historic 9-story Jamestown Furniture Exposition Building in downtown Jamestown. The project will include retail, office and residential space.
  • $240,000 to the National Comedy Center to launch a nationwide marketing campaign to broadcast its offering of unique and memorable entertainment experiences.

Erie County

  • $5,000,000 to the Town of Cheektowaga to reduce sanitary sewer overflows by slip lining sewers and reducing inflow and infiltration. The project will help improve water quality in the Buffalo River.
  • $2,500,000 to Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper to aid in the transformation of the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Centennial Park, an aging park on the shore of Lake Erie in the City of Buffalo, through natural shoreline restoration, wetlands and bioretention areas.
  • $1,000,000 to Kleinhans Music Hall Management to embark on necessary repairs and upgrades to the building mechanicals and structure in order to ensure its ability to operate as a world class venue for the foreseeable future.
  • $714,000 to Steuben Foods in Elma to expand its advanced food and beverage manufacturing facility by acquiring additional equipment to keep up with growing demand from its customers.

Niagara County

  • $2,650,000 to Cascades Greenpac Mill to complete a series of capital projects and operations and maintenance adjustments to save energy and reduce their carbon emissions.
  • $1,500,000 to the City of Lockport to install green infrastructure improvements on multiple streets in their downtown, complementing the Downtown Revitalization Initiative projects and further aiding in the revitalization of the area.
  • $372,125 to the City of North Tonawanda to design and construct a two-mile extension to the Erie Canal bike path connecting Mayor’s Park to the Botanical Garden’s Park. The project will improve public access to waterfront parklands and the Erie Canal.

A full list of the 2019 REDC awards is available at www.regionalcouncils.ny.gov.

This spring, Governor Cuomo launched Round IX of the REDC.  During Round IX, the Strategic Implementation Assessment Team (SIAT), which is composed of state agency commissioners and members of the New York State Legislature, heard proposals from each of the ten Regional Councils directly and assessed the implementation of the regions’ strategic plans.

In 2019, up to $150 million in capital funds and $75 million in Excelsior Tax Credits was available for projects identified by the Regional Councils as priorities in their regions. All ten regions competed this year for designation as a Top Performer. Five top performing regions were awarded a share of $100 million in ESD Capital grants. The remaining five regions were awarded a share of $50 million in ESD Capital grants. Each region was also awarded a share of $75 million in Excelsior Tax Credits to help attract and grow business in the region.

In addition, each region once again received $10 million to implement projects identified through the Downtown Revitalization Initiative, and projects from all 10 regions submitted through the CFA were eligible for over $525 million in other state agency funds.

Since its inception in 2011, over $6.9 billion has been awarded to more than 8,300 projects that are projected to create and retain more than 240,000 jobs statewide through the REDC process.

To learn more about the WNYREDC, visit https://regionalcouncils.ny.gov/western-new-york.

About the Regional Economic Development Councils

The Regional Economic Development Council (REDC) initiative is a key component of Governor Cuomo's approach to State investment and economic development. In 2011, Governor Cuomo established 10 Regional Councils to develop long-term strategic plans for economic growth for their regions. The Councils are public-private partnerships made up of local experts and stakeholders from business, academia, local government, and non-governmental organizations. The Regional Councils have redefined the way New York invests in jobs and economic growth by putting in place a community-based, bottom up approach and establishing a competitive process for State resources. For more information on the Regional Councils, visit http://www.regionalcouncils.ny.gov/.

Pamm Lent | [email protected] | (800) 260-7313
Laura Magee | [email protected] | (800) 260-7313