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Executive Budget 2014

Executive Budget 2014

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Published by Nick Reisman

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Published by: Nick Reisman on Feb 24, 2014
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02/27/2014

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The Executive Budget seeks to expand certain economic development programs,
including START-UP NY. START-UP NY was created in 2013 to allow eligible academic
institutions to attract new businesses and locate them in vacant buildings, space or land
at or near their campuses. Businesses that would locate in those zones are exempt from
State taxes, including personal income tax, sales tax, business taxes and property taxes,
for a period of 10 years. Eligible businesses would include new companies, companies
relocating to New York, or current New York State companies that are expanding. There
are several types of businesses that are ineligible to participate including retail stores,
restaurants, law firms, medical practices, and real estate offices.

The Executive proposes Launch Global NY, which would link START-UP NY with the
State’s 10 Regional Economic Development Councils (REDCs), with the goal of attracting
international investors through an international marketing campaign.

New funding is proposed in the Executive Budget for several economic development
projects, including $180 million to support a project known as Nano Utica, which is

proposed to be the State’s secondary hub for nanotechnology research and
development. As part of the Executive’s commitment to provide $1.0 billion in funding to
support economic development in the City of Buffalo and surrounding areas (the “Buffalo
Billion”), the proposed Budget includes $680 million in new capital appropriations through
the Urban Development Corporation (UDC) for the Buffalo Regional Innovation Cluster.
The SFY 2012-13 and SFY 2013-14 Enacted Budgets provided $75 million each in
capital appropriations for this initiative, in addition to Excelsior Jobs tax credits. A capital
appropriation of $2.2 million through UDC is included in the proposed Budget for
expenses related to the retention of professional football in western New York.
In addition, $105 million is being sought to support a partnership between downstate’s
New York Genome Center and the University of Buffalo’s Center for Computational

Research, in order to advance biomedical research. Of that $105 million, $55.8 million is
appropriated to UDC for the Genome Center, with the remaining $50 million coming from

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the Buffalo Billion initiative, according to DOB. The Executive Budget’s original
appropriation for the Genome Center stipulated that no more than $27.9 million could be
disbursed until a private funding match of $55.8 million was met. The 30-day
amendments reduce this private funding match requirement to $27.9 million.

Other proposals include providing $30 million in capital appropriations to stimulate the
revitalization of Onondaga Lake and its surrounding communities. The Executive Budget
also includes $24 million in capital appropriations for the Economic Transformation
Program to aid communities affected by the pending closure of four correctional facilities
in July 2014 or areas affected by any shutdown of juvenile facilities in SFY 2014-15. The
Executive Budget originally proposed that funding would be provided pursuant to plans
developed by UDC in consultation with the REDCs. The 30-day amendments remove
this requirement.

The Executive also proposes several North Country initiatives, including $10 million to
support a partnership among the State, Clarkson University, and the Trudeau Institute to
further develop biotechnology research. In addition, according to the Executive, $12
million in reappropriations to refurbish and repair the Veteran’s Memorial Highway on
Whiteface Mountain are proposed. The proposal would also fund projects to repair the
castle, elevator and tollhouse. The Executive Budget also proposes $9.4 million in new
capital funds for the Olympic Regional Development Authority (ORDA). Of this funding,
$6.9 million would be used for maintenance and energy efficiency upgrades to the
Olympic and ski facilities. An additional $2.5 million in capital appropriations would come
from the OPRHP, as part of the New York Works initiative.

The Executive Budget includes $55 million in new funding for both the NY-SUNY 2020
and NY-CUNY 2020 programs. Also included in the proposal is a $50 million capital
appropriation through UDC for the State University of New York College for Nanoscale
Science and Engineering in Albany.

The Executive proposes continuing and expanding several programs, including providing
$50 million in funding from the New York Power Authority (NYPA) to support the Open for
Business initiative and funding of $5 million through the Department of Economic
Development (DED) to continue Market NY, which provides competitive funding to
support tourism marketing plans. The Executive Budget also seeks to provide $1.1
million for the Taste NY program which was created in the SFY 2013-14 Enacted Budget.
Continued funding for the REDCs is proposed with $150 million in capital funding, along
with $70 million in Excelsior Jobs tax credits.

The Executive Budget proposal continues funding for various economic development
initiatives, including almost $46 million for initiatives such as the Empire State Economic
Development Fund, Urban and Community Development Program, Entrepreneurial
Assistance Program, and tourism marketing initiatives. In addition, the Executive Budget
includes nearly $31 million to support the High Technology Program administered by the
Department of Economic Development (DED), which supports ongoing university-based
matching grants, and other high technology research at various institutions.

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The Executive proposal continues the New York State Innovation Hot Spots and
Incubator Programs, with $3.75 million in new DED appropriations. This program was
created as part of the SFY 2013-14 Enacted Budget, and seeks to foster innovation by
offering startup companies business support services. Under the program, Innovation
Hot spots are designated by UDC and must have an affiliation with at least one college,
university, or independent research institution. Businesses that participate in the
program are also eligible for State tax benefits, as well as sales and use tax credits or
refunds for their purchases, for a period of five years.

Several public authority provisions related to economic development are extended for
one year. These include the authority of DASNY to enter into design and construction

management agreements with DEC and OPRHP, UDC’s authorization to administer the
Empire State Economic Development Fund, and UDC’s power to grant general loans.

The Executive Budget also seeks to strengthen consumer protections through the
Department of Financial Services (DFS). The proposal adds two health-care-related
provisions intended to protect consumers from costly out-of-network medical bills and
reduce no-fault auto insurance fraud. The proposal also seeks to establish licensure
requirements for real estate industry title insurance agents, closers and solicitors.

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