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START-UP New York was launched in 2013. It’s designed to provide incentives for young companies to start or expand their business on or near college campuses, and provides tax incentives to businesses.

But as Local 22 and 44’s Nick Perreault explains, some are questioning if the state’s plan to reel in business is actually producing.

From energy to agriculture, it’s tough to argue that New York would not benefit from creating more jobs.

E.J. McMahon, the President of the Empire Center for Public Policy, keeps a careful eye of how your tax dollars are spent from inside the walls of the Capitol.

“It’s working the way it was intended, but it’s not delivering on what may have been the hype that had been around it,” said McMahon.

If you watched the ads, McMahon says, START-UP New York is built up like the perfect answer for job creation in New York.

Lawmakers expected a progress report by April 1 on the latest up-to-date numbers, but they’re still waiting.

A 2015 report from the State Comptroller shows $45 million was thrown towards advertising START-UP New York last year, and all that cash produced 76 jobs – which McMahon says is not exactly delivering as advertised.

“The problem is that START-UP is being promoted as one of the primary engines of growth for upstate New York when it could never function in that way,” said McMahon. “It’s basically a niche program designed to promote spin-offs of research and higher education. That’s it.”

Using the state’s numbers, Assemblyman Karl Brabenee’s office says those 76 jobs created last year equal about $600,000 of your tax dollars to bring one job to the empire state.

Assemblyman Brabenee says creating START-UP New York was not a mistake, but in a recent letter to the Commissioner of Empire State Development, he says, “It is a grave mistake to continue funding a program when there is no progress report and quantifiable proof that it simply is not working.”

Despite those 2015 numbers, the Governor and legislative majorities agreed to set aside $66.5 million to fund START-UP New York and the Governor’s trade missions in the year ahead.

© 2016 Nexstar


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