The day after she announced a $10 million Downtown Revitalization Initiative award in Amsterdam and hours after doing the same in Albany, New York Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul was in Plattsburgh Thursday to examine projects supported by the first round of awards in 2016.
SterRx is a pharmaceutical manufacturer that opened a facility on the former Plattsburgh Air Force base with aid from Empire State Development’s Excelsior Jobs Program, which provides tax credits to businesses that locate or expand in the state. Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul toured the site Thursday during a stop in Plattsburgh.
Hochul, a Democrat seeking reelection, says it was an opportunity to thank entrepreneurs like SterRx. “It’s employers like these who have used their talents, they’ve been in the industry a long time, using creativity but also using some of the resources of the state of New York they’re able to, we’re able to assist them with the job creation because we were able to give them over $700,000 of Excelsior tax credits. Those are only paid when the jobs are created. They’ve grown from about 7 just a few years ago to 114 and they now have another 20 individuals that they’ll be hiring. These are from PhD’s all the way down to entry level positions. So from the job point of view it’s important. I’m very physical. I want to see in person with my own eyes what’s happening.”
A year and a half ago the city of Plattsburgh was one of the first communities in the state to be awarded $10 million in DRI funds. After her visit to SterRx, the Lieutenant Governor headed to see the area where Downtown Revitalization Initiative funds are being invested. “You’re not going to see the work itself yet. A lot of it was the infrastructure and the planning for the parking and putting out RFP’s and so I just want to stay on the ground and let our elected officials here know that we’re watching the situation closely ‘cause we just can’t wait to do the first shovels in the ground but better yet the ribbon cuttings that are following. So we want to make sure that these move along on a pretty clipped pace because people get excited and then they want to start seeing progress. So I’m here to just support the local community and say it’s great things are still on the cusp of happening.”
Mayor Colin Read met her on Durkee Street. “We can update you on the plans and we can see just about everything. Just walk across the parking lot here.”
Hochul: “Sure. You really have so many assets here. A river, a lake, a former warehouse district that is just ripe for development whether it’s incubators, whether it’s co-working space, whether it’s a brewery or cidery, distillery, restaurants, and then housing. So there’s, I’m just seeing such potential here. The $10 million is tangible.”
Read notes not a lot of the state funding has been spent yet. “Very little of the actual 10 million has been except for on studies and consultants at that point. But you’re going to see a lot of that being spent very soon. Each one of the projects that the Lieutenant Governor announced back in March last year is now at that stage of tangible results. Consultants have been packaging, finding out what additional incentives are needed, how to make this most attractive to the developers. So you’ll see a lot of movement over the next six months to a year. But it doesn’t happen quickly at all that’s for sure.”
Lieutenant Governor Hochul also toured new terminal facilities at the Plattsburgh International Airport and a new welcome center along the Adirondack Northway.