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Cuomo Economic Plans Marred By Meager Results, Investigation

WAMC image by Dave Lucas

It's been a bad few months for Gov. Andrew Cuomo's signature economic development programs.

Federal investigators are looking into potential conflicts of interest in the Buffalo Billion, the Democratic governor's plan to revive Buffalo's economy. Another Cuomo program, Start-Up NY, has created only 408 jobs so far according to a state report quietly released by the administration this month.

And on Thursday, state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli released an audit that found officials couldn't verify that companies given tax credits for creating jobs were living up to their obligations.

State economic development officials point to lower unemployment as evidence Cuomo's efforts are working. But the struggles facing the governor's high-profile programs are giving fresh material to critics who say Cuomo needs to rethink some of his proudest accomplishments.

© 2016 AP

Dave Lucas is WAMC’s Capital Region Bureau Chief. Born and raised in Albany, he’s been involved in nearly every aspect of local radio since 1981. Before joining WAMC, Dave was a reporter and anchor at WGY in Schenectady. Prior to that he hosted talk shows on WYJB and WROW, including the 1999 series of overnight radio broadcasts tracking the JonBenet Ramsey murder case with a cast of callers and characters from all over the world via the internet. In 2012, Dave received a Communicator Award of Distinction for his WAMC news story "Fail: The NYS Flood Panel," which explores whether the damage from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee could have been prevented or at least curbed. Dave began his radio career as a “morning personality” at WABY in Albany.
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