Last week, Gov. Cuomo announced the launch of two economic development initiatives — the Upstate Revitalization Initiative and the fifth round of the Regional Economic Development Council (REDC) process.

Since 2011, New York state has begun to make unprecedented financial commitments to Upstate New York. And based on the results of the “Buffalo Billion,” this approach works. By harvesting the best assets of each region, encouraging partnerships between business, academia, government and the community, eligible regions will develop well thought out plans that will help attract private sector investment.

That is the thinking that underlies the newly-created Upstate Revitalization Initiative (URI), in which seven regions (Finger Lakes, Southern Tier, Central New York, Mohawk Valley, North Country, Capital District and Mid-Hudson) will compete for three $500 million awards that will be disbursed at a rate of $100 million per year for five years.

Under the REDC program, the state’s 10 Regional Councils will again compete for awards from up to $750 million in state economic development resources. Since 2011, this process has awarded nearly $3 billion in support of more than 3,100 projects throughout the state.  The deadline for submission of applications under the REDC program is July 31.

Gov. Cuomo said:

“New York’s Regional Councils have transformed our state’s economy over the past four years – and we’re going to continue that progress with the largest single investment in the program and an unprecedented focus on revitalizing Upstate.  Between the fifth round of the Regional Economic Development Council competition and the new $1.5 billion Upstate Revitalization Initiative, we are helping communities across the state invest in their many unique assets and expand opportunities for growth from the ground up. I encourage every region to come together and put their best plans forward as we continue to create a brighter and more prosperous future for New York State.”