ALBANY, NY — A total of $104 million in grant awards was steered to 305 local projects between April and October by the Dormitory Authority of the State of New York (DASNY), according to data the Empire Center recently received pursuant to a FOIL request.

The governor and state legislators hand-picked most of the grantees, under a program that allows them to direct DASNY dollars to state and local projects.

The largest grant was a $15 million award to Suffolk County for the construction of a community center.

Among other funded projects:

  • $2 million for interior renovations of the Universal Hip Hop Museum in New York City;
  • $500,000 for the construction and installation of a new roof on the Cazenovia Ice Rink in the City of Buffalo;
  • $500,000 for improvements to ice arena bathrooms and locker rooms in Nassau County;
  • $500,000 for the restoration of the Persian pool at the Untermyer Gardens Conservancy in the Mid-Hudson Valley;
  • $300,000 to construct a “state-of-the-art animal shelter” for the Town of Saugerties in the Mid-Hudson Valley;
  • $279,000 for masonry restoration of the exterior of Ghent Town Hall in the Capital region;
  • $250,000 to demolish and install a new bathhouse facility for the Town of Chateaugay in the North Country;
  • $250,000 to improve the Town of Hamburg’s athletic fields at William D. Williams Park in Western New York;
  • $250,000 to replace the Meachem playground and expand Salem Hyde playground at Syracuse City School District in Central New York;
  • $125,000 to purchase a nursing simulator mannequin for Orange County Community College in the Mid-Hudson Valley; and
  • $100,000 to purchase a dump truck for the Village of Clinton in the Mohawk Valley.

A total of 24 local park projects received a collective $5.7 million in grant funds. An additional 35 grants totaling $9.5 million will go to build or improve athletic, fitness or recreational facilities. And $2 million went to municipal restroom renovations.

The $104 million was channeled to local entities state-wide, including $15 million to 55 villages; $10 million to 44 towns; $9.6 million to 48 New York City public schools; $6 million to 11 cities outside New York; $5.4 million to police, fire and other public safety entities; $4 million to 16  elementary/secondary schools outside New York City; $3.6 million to colleges and universities and $1.4 million to public libraries.

The entire list of projects is posted on SeeThroughNY, the Empire Center’s government transparency website.

The awards are funded by bonds issued without voter approval. Most of the grants are authorized under the State and Municipal Facilities Program (SMFP), a $2 billion slush fund created in 2013 that lets state lawmakers and the governor name the recipients. The Budget Division anticipates paying out $260 million from SMFP alone during the current fiscal year.

The Empire Center, based in Albany, is an independent, not-for-profit, non-partisan think tank dedicated to promoting policies that can make New York a better place to live, work and raise a family.

You may also like

Pair of NYCHA Plumbers Paid $200,000+ in OT Last Year

Two New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) plumbers and an electrician each collected over $200,000 in overtime during New York City’s 2021 fiscal year Read More

Climate Legislation Could Cost New York Half a Trillion Dollars, New Report Finds

An ambitious 2019 climate change law adopted by the Legislature could cost as much as $510 billion while yielding benefits worth several hundred million less Read More

Seven Steps to Reverse New York’s Backward Trajectory 

The Empire Center for Public Policy today released a slate of policy recommendations that would make New York State a better place to live and work.   Read More

New York State Owes Nearly $360 Billion in Retiree Health Care Debt 

New York governments at all levels owe a combined $359.7 billion in debt to pay retired public employees health benefits, according to a new Empire Center report. Read More

Most Long Island Educators Paid at Least $100,000 Last Year

18% of all public-school teachers and administrators employed by school districts outside New York City were paid over $100,000 last year Read More

Newest Pensions for Retirees of Police and Fire Careers Average $86,852

Full career police and firemen (those serving 20 or more years) enrolled in New York’s Police and Fire Retirement System (PRFRS) who became eligible to start receiving a pension during 2020 are eligible for an average award of $86,852 annually.  Read More

Statement on the release of new COVID-19 Death Toll data

The Cuomo administration left out many people who died without a test during the early weeks of the pandemic Read More

An Open Letter to Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul

As an organization committed to openness in government, we welcome your commitment to leading a fully transparent administration Read More

Subscribe

Sign up to receive updates about Empire Center research, news and events in your email.

CONTACT INFORMATION

Empire Center for Public Policy
30 South Pearl St.
Suite 1210
Albany, NY 12207

Phone: 518-434-3100

General Inquiries: Info@EmpireCenter.org

Press Inquiries: Press@EmpireCenter.org

About

The Empire Center is an independent, non-partisan, non-profit think tank located in Albany, New York. Our mission is to make New York a better place to live and work by promoting public policy reforms grounded in free-market principles, personal responsibility, and the ideals of effective and accountable government.

Empire Center Logo Enjoying our work? Sign up for email alerts on our latest news and research.
Together, we can make New York a better place to live and work!