In 2011, Governor Cuomo established ten Regional Economic Development Councils (REDCs) to develop long-term regional strategic economic development plans. The Executive Budget includes core capital and tax-credit funding that will be combined with a wide range of existing agency programs for a seventh round of REDC awards totaling $750 million.
In round six, $4 million was awarded to the University at Albany Bioscience Development Corporation (UABDC), a non-profit organization whose mission is to support the University, for supporting infrastructure improvements and building upgrades on the Health Sciences Campus. These improvements will enable UABDC to retain the existing health science related occupants and assist the University in attracting other health science companies. Read more here.
The Executive Budget includes a proposal to establish the Excelsior Business Program, which builds upon the strengths of other programs and focuses on new and early-stage businesses involved in research and development or production of new products and technology to create better partnership opportunities between businesses, and college and university sponsors. In addition to tax-free benefits for these early-stage businesses, the program would also offer enhanced tax credits for companies that expand and create additional jobs while in the program. Companies that are fewer than five years old would be eligible for the modified program, which allows businesses to operate for at least five years without paying income, sales or property tax. There is a 25-employee limit on companies that apply.
The Executive Budget fully funds the Centers for Advanced Technology (CATs) at $13.82 million, and includes $5 million for the Innovation Hot Spots and Incubators Program. The Executive Budget maintains State funding for ten Centers of Excellence at $8.7 million.
$100 million in new funding is allocated for this initiative which will target ten downtown areas, one in each economic development region that is either suffering from economic distress or population loss.
The Executive Budget includes $150 million for a life sciences laboratory public health initiative which will develop life science research, innovation and infrastructure through a joint effort between Empire State Development (ESD) and the Department of Health (DOH).
Additionally, the budget funds a $650 million multi-faceted strategy that includes $250 million in tax incentives for new and existing life science companies, $200 million in State capital grants to support investment in wet-lab and innovation space, and $100 million in investment capital for early stage life science initiatives, with an additional match of at least $100 million for operating support from private sector partnerships. The first investment under this new initiative will provide $15 million to support the build out of the JLABS Innovation Center at the NY Genome Center. This collaboration with Johnson & Johnson JLABS division will provide entrepreneurs 35,000 square feet of lab space and offices, and access to scientific, industry and capital funding expertise to build early stage companies into economic engines.
The Executive Budget includes $44.8 million for the ninth year of a 10-year commitment of $500 million for the Stem Cell Innovation Fund.
The Executive Budget provides the remaining $5 million to support the partnership between the State, Clarkson University, and the Trudeau Institute for biotechnology research and development.