Two blocks from the proposed Inner Harbor project of COR Development, developers are proposing the rehabilitation of a commercial building for use by two different firms–one a financial services firm and the other a sports medicine practice.
The financial firm estimates that 100 jobs will relocate from the Onondaga Co. suburbs and they will create an additional 50 jobs over 5 years.
Unlike COR, the developers are not being coy about their intentions to ask for public benefits. The group 706 N. Clinton LLC has applied for a $500,000 state grant to do asbestos and lead paint remediation. They are also asking for a 10 year, $1.2 million package of tax incentives from the Syracuse Industrial Development Agency: $896,720 in property tax discounts, $240,000 in exemptions from sales taxes on construction materials and $65,000 from an exemption from the state mortgage recording tax.
The UJTF has endorsed the NY State Assembly Bill A.08203: “Just and Open Business Subsidies Act of 2013″. (The JOBS Act for short!)
Introduced by Assembly Member Sean Ryan (D, Buffalo), the JOBS Act is an attempt to provide transparency to the over $7 billion in public subsidies given to private businesses by the taxpayers of New York’s cities and counties.
If enacted, the JOBS Act would require recipients of economic development subsidies to set clear good job and local hiring targets, transparently track subsidies and job creation on a single public website, and establish a “money back guarantee” to recapture subsidies if recipients break their promises.
Click here to link to the official description of the bill on the NY State Assembly’s website.
On October 15, the UJTF attended a public hearing held by the Syracuse Industrial Development Agency (SIDA) on the draft Environmental Impact Study conducted for the Inner Harbor project. The UJTF through Aggie Lane presented verbal and written comments calling for the designation of Syracuse as the Environmental Justice area for purposes of the study (as opposed to the 6 county CNY area) and using our Community Benefits Agreement as a means to meet the required standards.
Check out the UJTF’s written submission here:
Check out WSYR TV 9′s coverage of the S.I.D.A. hearing here.
COR Development projects in both Syracuse and Watertown were recently included in the submissions by the Regional Economic Development Councils of both Central New York and the North Country for the third round of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s regional council competition for state grants and tax credits for jobs-producing development projects.
The project to convert the old Mercy Hospital in Watertown into apartments, offices and shops is seeking a $5 million in state funding. The project is slated to create over 400 jobs over five years.
The $350 million COR Development project to redevelop the Inner Harbor in Syracuse is seeking a state grant of $1.5 million to relocate an historic freight house, removing three abandoned storage buildings and constructing two 30,000-square-foot mixed-use buildings (each with commercial space on the first floors and 100 apartments on the upper floors).
COR Development has received significant funding for the Inner Harbor development project through the Regional Economic Development Council process since it was initiated by Governor Cuomo: $3 million in 2011 and another $1.5 million in 2012.
In an impassioned Letter To the Editor published in the Chicago Tribune recently, Rod Wilson, Executive Director of the Lugenia Burns Hope Center, writing on the behalf of the Bronzeville Clergy Caucus, Chicago spoke of the need for a CBA to truly guarantee that the construction of a new proposed Wal-Mart would benefit both workers and the community.
When is enough, enough? When do we not allow corporate interests to take precedence over constituent and community interests? Walmart must agree to a community benefits agreement that requires a local hiring preference (within two miles of the store) for jobs and a living wage of $11.53 per hour . . . If we want to increase the quality of life for community residents, we must provide all with the opportunity to find gainful employment that will provide a living wage, and hold the potential for economic self-sufficiency.
Check out their draft CBA agreement here.
The planned Kingsbridge National Ice Center will generate nearly $2 billion in economic benefits for the city, its developer claimed this week.
The community benefits agreement requires that at least 51% of employees be Bronx residents and be paid at least $10 per hour with benefits or $11.50 without. The community will receive 1.5% of the ice center’s annual revenues, or $276 million over the 99-year lease. And the community will enjoy free ice time, worth nearly $589 million.
“A group of Cleveland’s leading institutions, some of the city’s largest contractors and the building trades unions today formally endorsed an agreement designed to provide what Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson described as “a self-help approach to economic development.”
Called a community benefits agreement, or CBA, the memorandum — signed by 10 organizations that expect to spend billions of dollars on construction projects in the next several years — sets standards designed to encourage the use of local labor and local contracting firms, in particular minority and female workers and firms.”