March 11, 2004
Senate, Assembly offer
separate proposals for creating jobs
Council says any growth plan must ease the
high costs of creating jobs
The Council has welcomed separate jobs proposals offered by the Senate and Assembly, but warned that any development plan must address business's main priority: cutting New York's consistently above-average job-creation costs.
On March 10, Senate Majority Leader Joseph Bruno proposed "Excell-NY," a plan highlighted by targeted tax cuts and a new business development infrastructure. The plan would cost $7 million in 2004-05, with costs growing to $50 million when the program is fully effective, the Senate release said. Tax relief would be about $40 million next year, and would grow to $283 million when fully effective.
On March 9, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver proposed "NY@Work," a $525 million plan that would: extend the state's Power for Jobs program; change the state's economic-development administration; impose new restrictions on the state's Empire Zone program; promote industry investments; and invest in workforce education and training focused on high-tech jobs.
"We welcome these proposals and hope that lawmakers can embrace the good ideas offered in crafting a job-growth plan that will also focus on reducing the high costs that do the most damage to our job growth: taxes, workers' compensation costs, energy costs, and health insurance costs," said Business Council President Daniel B. Walsh.
The Senate plan would: expand the R&D tax credit from 9 to 40 percent, with the credit refundable and available for four years; create a local-option property tax rebate to developers that finance costs of outfitting or retrofitting technology parks to accommodate new businesses; add Empire Zones in the 11 counties that lack one, and expand zones in Genesee and Orleans counties; permit expansion of fully utilized zones if that promotes high-tech growth and attracts out-of-state jobs and investments; eliminate the petroleum business tax on kero jet fuel; create five regional centers to offer emerging businesses innovation capital, venture capital, and technical and business expertise; and create four capital funds to provide matching funds for early-stage companies and federal grants.
The Assembly plan would: extend the state's Power for Jobs program and modify it with unspecified changes; impose new restrictions on the state's Empire Zone program; establish a "Make-It-Here" manufacturing initiative that would focus on small manufacturers and niche markets, flexible manufacturing, and R&D: invest in high-tech and biotechnology/biomedical research and commercialization projects; continue capital support for high-tech research at academic institutions; create a capital fund to foster investments in business incubators for start-ups and "accelerator" facilities for later-stage companies; and change the state's economic-development administration.