June 24, 1999
Council urges more Power for Jobs; total of new jobs created nears 11,000
The Business Council is urging lawmakers to increase reduced-rate power available under New York's Power for Jobs program from 450 to 850 megawatts.
A bill that would do that has been introduced in both the Senate (S.2425-A)and the Assembly (A.3115-A). The prime sponsors are Senator James Wright (R-Watertown) and Assemblyman Joseph Robach (D-Rochester).
Power for Jobs offers reduced-rate power to employers that pledge to use it to create or retain jobs. When the program was created in 1997, the original allocation of 133 megawatts for 1998, the first year of the program, was fully allocated within five months.
Since then, demand for this power has been consistently high, and legislators have added megawatts to the program and accelerated allocations.
Power originally allocated for 2000 was made available this year, and even that amount is nearly gone, said Kevin Lanahan, The Council's legislative analyst specializing in energy issues.
Electricity prices in New York are stable or falling as New York phases in competitive power markets, but power prices here remain far above the national average, Lanahan said.
This means that the reduced-rate power will be a significant inducement to companies making plant- and job-location decisions, he added.
On June 22, Governor Pataki announced the latest Power for Jobs allocations and said they would create 349 new jobs and protect nearly 15,000 others. All told, the program has created nearly 11,000 new jobs, he said.