industrial development agencies


Wed February 12, 2014

Miner says tax break for Destiny USA hotel would be a "mistake"

Destiny USA

Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner says giving the Destiny USA entertainment and shopping center a tax break to build a hotel would be “a mistake,” but the mayor actually has little say over those incentives.

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Fri January 10, 2014
Regional Coverage

Watertown Stream call center's parent company selling to rival

The Stream Global Services call center in Watertown will change hands when its parent company is bought by a rival, according to Reuters. It’s not clear what effect that might have on the 700 employees who work there.

Don Alexander heads the Jefferson County Industrial Development Agency. He says Stream’s significance to the area’s economy can’t be overstated and the company has been a good employer.

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Tue December 10, 2013
The Upstate Economy

State subsidy system lacks transparency at regional level

Snapshot of IDA performance in central New York.

New York state’s economic development programs lack transparency and accountability at a regional level, according to a new report released Monday by the left-leaning Alliance for a Greater New York (ALIGN).

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Wed November 13, 2013
The Upstate Economy

Jefferson County entrepreneurs will have harder time finding startup funds

Business startup loans will be harder to come by in Jefferson County, as the Industrial Development Agency's micro-enterprise loan fund dries up.

Entrepreneurs in Jefferson County are going to have a harder time finding startup money, now that a loan fund meant to help them is running low. That's good news and bad news.

Here's the bad news: The Industrial Development Agency's micro-enterprise loan fund is down to about $31,000. That means the next successful applicant is going to drain it dry.

"At some point, someone is going to come to the loan fund for dollars for their business, and we won't have any to lend," says Don Alexander, IDA chief.

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Tue June 4, 2013

Former New Venture Gear plant may have new tenant

New Venture Gear once employed 4,000 people making auto parts in DeWitt, N.Y.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

The old New Venture Gear auto parts factory in suburban Syracuse could have a new tenant much quicker than county economic development officials expected.

A newly formed company called American Intermodal Container Manufacturing Inc. wants to use about half of the large factory to make shipping containers.

New Venture Gear concluded a long shutdown of its DeWitt plant in August. It once employed 4,000 people making parts for SUVs.

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Wed May 8, 2013

IDAs need to be more transparent, accountable, says comptroller

New York State Comptroller's Office

The New York state comptroller’s office has released its annual report on New York’s 113 Industrial Development Agencies (IDAs), with concerns raised about the effectiveness and transparency of the organizations.

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Tue April 2, 2013

Destiny USA and Syracuse reach deal to avoid legal battles

The Destiny USA shopping mall in Syracuse, N.Y.
Destiny USA

For the first time in Bill Ryan's 10 years of public service, Syracuse and the owner of the Destiny USA mega-sized shopping mall are not facing legal action. Ryan is a former common councilor and now chief of staff for the mayor and chairman of Syracuse Industrial Development Agency (SIDA), the city's development arm.

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Wed March 27, 2013

IDAs retain right to give out state tax breaks in budget win

New York's numerous economic development bodies will still have the ability to give out state-level tax breaks in a deal struck with Gov. Andrew Cuomo in state budget negotiations.

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Fri February 22, 2013
Politics and Government

Cuomo reacts to IDA backlash on sales tax proposal

Gov. Andrew Cuomo in western New York
Ashley Hassett/Innovation Trail

During his visit to western New York on Thursday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo reacted to the backlash by Industrial Development Agencies (IDAs) against his executive budget proposal that would remove their powers to grant state sales tax exemptions.

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Tue February 19, 2013
The Upstate Economy

Cuomo wants to shift some IDA powers to his regional councils

In Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s proposed budget, the state’s Industrial Development Agencies, or IDAs, would no longer be able to grant state sales tax exemptions for economic development projects. Instead, that authority will go to Cuomo's Regional Economic Development Councils.

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Tue December 4, 2012

Money from Destiny USA could be used for Inner Harbor upgrades

Syracuse's Inner Harbor.
Credit scottwdw / via Flickr

Some of the money collected through the tax break agreement between the Destiny USA mega-mall and Syracuse will be used to try and win federal funding for Inner Harbor improvements. The Syracuse Industrial Development Agency (SIDA) has approved the use of $500,000 from Destiny payments to be part of a match for a federal grant the city is applying for.

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Thu November 15, 2012

Biotech company will bring $72 million expansion to the Capital Region

Regeneron Pharmeceuticals, Inc.

Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, a Tarrytown-based biotech company, has announced a $72 million expansion in the Capital Region, which is expected to add 300 new jobs.

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Tue September 25, 2012

Syracuse, Destiny USA appear headed to court over parking lots

Destiny USA is opening up an expansion to the mall, but it is not as big as once promised.
Destiny USA

The saga of the owner of the Destiny USA megamall and the city of Syracuse continues. The two appear destined to end up back in court as the Syracuse Industrial Development Agency (SIDA) plans to file a lawsuit against developer Robert Congel's Pyramid Group - the mall's owner - over parking lots.

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Thu September 6, 2012

North side could have grocery store again in time for Christmas

Tops Friendly Markets plans to replace the now vacant Wegmans on Syracuse's north side.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

Residents on Syracuse's north side could have a grocery store within walking distance again by the end of the year.

Syracuse's development agency approved tax breaks Thursday morning to help Tops Friendly Markets replace a Wegmans that left this summer.

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Sat May 26, 2012
The Upstate Economy

IDA reform bill stuck in neutral

Daniel Robison Innovation Trail / WBFO

In recent years, donut shops, car dealerships, and doctor's offices have received tax breaks from industrial development agencies in western New York.

Now, a first-term state legislator from Buffalo has crafted a bill to halt such deals.

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Thu May 3, 2012
The Upstate Economy

DiNapoli: IDAs not delivering on job creation promises

Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli says "taxpayers are not getting enough bang for their buck when it comes to IDAs."
Matt Ryan WMHT

More tax breaks does not equal more jobs.

That's according to State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli's latest report on New York's industrial development agencies (IDAs).

In his fifth report on IDAs [PDF], DiNapoli says the number of jobs created by the local economic development engines dropped by 22,000 from the year before.

DiNapoli also cites a $483 million gap in what IDAs gave out in tax breaks and how much they took in via payments-in-lieu-of-taxes (PILOTs).

That breaks down, the report finds, to a $2,659 cost per job - up 9 percent from the year before.

"Taxpayers are not getting enough bang for their buck when it comes to IDAs," DiNapoli said in a statement.

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Fri March 23, 2012
Politics and Government

Back-taxes force Syracuse IDA board member to resign

Darin Price says he donated his former home back to Syracuse after a fire in 1994 forced him to move. Price resigned from SIDA Thursday after it was discovered he owes 18 years of back-taxes on the property.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

Two days after being publicly outed for owing Syracuse and the county nearly $97,000 in back taxes, a board member of the Syracuse Industrial Development Agency (SIDA) has resigned.

His tenure with SIDA was short: He sat in on just two board meetings.

But one of those meetings included a "yes" vote on a controversial tax break for a proposed construction project on the University Hill.

And that was the catalyst for his ouster.

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