On Wednesday, I was pleased to attend Gov. Cuomo’s announcement that the state is moving into the third round of the Regional Economic Development Council process.  The 2011 and 2012 rounds of the REDC process included $1.5 billion in investments supporting over 1,400 projects, which have helped by creating or helping retain some 75,000 jobs.

The 10 regional entities throughout the state set plans and priorities for their respective region, and apply to the state for grants and tax breaks. In Round III of the REDC Competition, $760 million in state funding and tax incentives will be awarded: $220 million ($150 million in capital + $70 million in tax credits) via the competitive process, and $540 million for state supported programs through the Consolidated Funding Application (CFA) process.

This year’s program will include an “Innovation Hot Spots” competition – a plan to create regional incubators for the commercialization of technologies developed at colleges and universities. Up to five regional incubators that demonstrate an ability to transfer technology from the research stage to commercialization will receive state support in 2013, and another five will be chosen in 2014.

The REDC program has been a tremendous success – establishing a bottom-up economic development process, while bringing a host of stakeholders into the conversation.  We look forward to the next phase of this process.