Although about $50 million less was handed out this year, Central New York, the North Country and the Mohawk Valley say they're pleased with their grants and have big plans for the funding. Our Andrew Sorensen has the regions reactions and tells us what they hope to do with their awards.
NEW YORK STATE -- The governor says the first year of his economic development program is a successful step in the right direction.
"You read it in the newspapers every day, this is working my friends, it's working!" Governor Cuomo said.
Leadership in several regions seem to agree and they're glad it has. Success has opened the door for more funding.
"The state's going to invest in dozens of projects in Central New York that are going to create jobs and put people to work. That's wonderful news right before the holidays," CenterState CEO President Rob Simpson said.
Central New York got the second highest award, pulling in $93.8 million for 73 projects focusing not just on business, but also quality of life and redeveloping run-down areas. They were also labeled a 'Top Performer.'
"I'm really proud of the fact that 71 of the 74 projects that got funded last year are on track and underway and scheduled for completion this year. That's a great track record," Simpson said.
The only other 'Top Performer' in the state is the North Country. They'll be receiving $90.2 million for 82 projects, with the largest working on tourism, housing and infrastructure.
Senator Betty Little says her region's successful use of last year's top prize is already showing.
"[We] put together another good program and there are just a lot of issues in the North Country and the need for job development and job growth and I'm really pleased to see them win that," said Little.
The region in between them didn't win any major accolades, but the Mohawk Valley succeeded in another way. They were able to maintain the closest amount to last year's funding, bringing in only a half a million dollars less with $59.7 million for 70 projects. They've invested in everything from Greek yogurt to microchips, but they also hope to invest in their neighbors if there's a third round.
"Hopefully that we're going to be able to maybe look for some of these opportunities with us three regions," MVREDC Co-Chair Wolf Yeigh said.
Governor Cuomo says the work in all ten regions is already transforming New York into the business-friendly state he envisions. The state made $738 million available for this year's development funding.
Here is a detailed list of programs the state is funding.