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Assemblyman
Brian M. Kolb
Assembly District 131
 
It’s Time To “GrowNY” And Build A Better Economy
Legislative column from Assembly Minority Leader Brian M. Kolb (R,I,C-Canandaigua)
April 13, 2012

With the 2012-13 State Budget enacted, my to-do list for the remainder of session includes tackling important issues such as job creation and economic development, delivering unfunded mandate relief and reducing New York’s high cost of living to ease the squeeze on families. Now is the time to get back to work in Albany because creating more private sector jobs must be “job one.”

To kick off my pro-growth, pro-jobs agenda, I recently introduced legislation (Assembly Bill A.9603) that would establish the “GrowNY” pilot program. GrowNY will help New York’s “second-stage” businesses create quality jobs without asking overburdened taxpayers to pay for it.

“SECOND STAGE” BUSINESSES OFFER BIG POTENTIAL FOR JOB CREATION

Studies show that companies with the largest potential for job growth are second-stage businesses. According to YourEconomy.org, between 1993 and 2008, second-stage companies only represented 10.9 percent of U.S.-based businesses, yet accounted for 35.7 percent of jobs and 24.8 percent of positive job growth.

A GrowNY second-stage business is a private business that has as few as five, and as many as 99 employees, has maintained its principal place of business in New York for at least two years and generates at least $750,000 but not more than $50 million in annual revenue. These businesses are poised to create the most new, long-term jobs and are, thus, the focus of my GrowNY plan.

NY ECONOMIC DEVELOPERS: DON’T WASTE TIME AND VALUABLE TAX DOLLARS “HUNTING” WHEN NEW YORK COULD BE “GARDENING!”

Ask any frustrated small-business owner looking for help from Albany and they’ll tell you that our current state economic development system is broken because it focuses on poaching companies from other states instead of helping the ones we presently have. Current economic development models “hunt” for new companies, rather than “growing” locally-owned-and- operated small businesses. Such an approach merely moves existing jobs around like chess pieces instead of creating new jobs and opportunities.

For years, New York has been of the mindset that becoming more business-friendly requires using taxpayer dollars to attract and keep businesses. This method of economic hunting causes increased costs for very little return on investment. These types of incentives draw businesses into a state for as long as they are available and then the companies disappear for greener pastures once the incentives stop.

HOW DOES NEW YORK’S JOB GARDEN GROW? ECONOMIC GARDENING PROVIDES A FRESH APPROACH TO JOB CREATION

A new approach to creating jobs known as “economic gardening” has been growing in popularity and focuses on an inside-out approach to support economic development by emphasizing growing businesses from within. Economic gardening is a long-term entrepreneurial strategy designed to generate new jobs from the existing base of local businesses – good jobs that will stay in communities for years because they aren’t based on temporary taxpayer giveaways.

GROWNY WILL SUPPORT AND STRENGTHEN SECOND-STAGE BUSINESSES

Under my program, every qualifying GrowNY business will receive support from experts through an economic development non-profit organization located in their area. Specific assistance provided through GrowNY will include the following services:

  • Access to affordable information and consulting;
  • Development of business connections;
  • Assistance with developing a listing of shovel-ready sites;
  • Guidance in understanding New York’s countless laws and regulations; and
  • Any other form of consultation and technical assistance with business and marketing needs.

I believe that we must have 100 percent accountability and transparency for every tax dollar spent, so my GrowNY program also will have regular reporting requirements showing the impact of this groundbreaking initiative on New York State’s businesses and economy.

GROWNY IS THE FIRST PIECE OF MY COMPREHENSIVE PRO-JOBS AGENDA

GrowNY is the first piece of my pro-growth, pro-jobs legislative agenda designed to improve our economy, create more private sector jobs and provide targeted, helpful support for businesses without asking taxpayers to foot the bill. I will continue advancing smart solutions like GrowNY throughout the remainder of session.

A BIG CANANDAIGUA THANK YOU TO EVERYONE WHO ATTENDED MY “EFFECTIVENY” TOWN HALL!

A big “thank you” goes out to everyone who attended my “EffectiveNY” Town Hall meeting last week at Canandaigua Inn on the Lake. My good friend Bill Samuels – who is a proud Canandaigua native and co-founder of EffectiveNY – and I were thrilled that more than 100 taxpayers took part in this special forum on how we can create lasting, meaningful change in Albany. Join the conversation by visiting EffectiveNY on-line at http://EffectiveNY.org and http://facebook.com/EffectiveNY – to share your ideas about creating a better government, a stronger economy, a modernized state constitution and a more responsive civic process.

As always, constituents wishing to discuss this topic or any other state-related matter should contact my district office at (315) 781-2030 or e-mail me at kolbb@assembly.state.ny.us.

 
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