For Release — March 1, 2011
Business Council supports quick passage of “Recharge NY” power program
ALBANY— “A long term economic development power program will help create and retain good paying jobs in New York. The Business Council strongly supports the Administration's “Recharge NY” proposal, and appreciates that the State Senate is moving it forward, said Heather Briccetti, acting-president & CEO of The Business Council of New York State, Inc.
The Senate Energy and Telecommunications Committee, today, approved the “Recharge NY” bill (S.3164/A.5021). This legislation, announced as part of Gov. Andrew Cuomo's Executive Budget but introduced as a stand alone program bill, is similar to legislation that received broad, bipartisan support in 2010.
This legislation includes key provisions supported by The Business Council that will help preserve and create high paying jobs and promote new capital and energy efficiency investments. These include:
- A 910 MW program that will give the state more economic development power resources than are available under expiring programs, that will can accommodate new program participants statewide.
- Allocation-based power benefits and long-term contracts of up to seven years that will provide competitive, stable electric power prices to energy intensive businesses.
- Eligibility criteria that assure significant, long-term economic return to the state, including the number and value (wages and benefits) of jobs created and retained, investments in capital equipment and energy efficiency, the significance of energy costs to a business' competitiveness, and the local economic significance of the facility.
“Recharge NY” would implement a permanent replacement for “Power for Jobs” and related energy-related benefit programs, which have been subject to multiple one year extenders. Over time, the programs' value to both the state and to participating companies has eroded. Periodic expirations have left several hundred energy-intensive businesses facing higher costs and uncertainty regarding future power supply and prices. The lack of a permanent new program, with the opportunity for new applicants and approvals, has also resulted in an incentive program at about two-thirds its authorized size.
Overall, The Business Council believes this bill offers a reasonable balance of economic development resources and residential rate protection, will result in a more effective statewide economic development power program, and will produce significant long term economic returns to the state. The Business Council urges both the Senate and Assembly to approve this vital legislation.