Good business or corporate welfare? The Daily Gazette

“There should be a way to make this happen without giving away the store,” said E.J. McMahon, research director of the Empire Center for Public Policy, an Albany think tank that advocates for smart-government and free-market policies.

Economic development spending questioned Utica Observer-Dispatch

“We’re passed the point of needing to increase the scrutiny on the state’s economic development programs,” said Ken Girardin, communications and marketing manager with the Albany-based Empire Center of Public Policy. “Lawmakers should be pulling the plug on them. They’re a distraction from the policies that hinder economic growth, especially upstate. Every time the state launches another economic development program, they’re basically shaking a jingly set of car keys to distract people from the underlying policies that they are unwilling to fix.”

Cuomo’s SolarCity Disaster by E.J. McMahon | New York Post

Earlier this month, Gov. Cuomo paid a visit to the centerpiece of his upstate economic development strategy: a massive, still unfinished “gigafactory” taxpayers spent $750 million to build and equip for SolarCity, a money-losing company with a foggy future.

“This is the economy of tomorrow,” the governor gushed, according to a Buffalo News account. “It’s such a metaphor — a symbol of everything we’re doing.”

Indeed. But rather than symbolizing a shiny high-tech future, the solar-panel factory could become a monument to what US Attorney Preet Bharara described as “pervasive corruption and fraud” allegedly infecting Cuomo’s signature economic development programs.

Has START-UP NY peaked? by Kenneth Girardin | NY Torch

START-UP NY, New York’s signature economic development program, made headlines for creating just 408 jobs in its first two years of operations. However, bigger disappointments may lie ahead.