Assemblyman Robert Sweeney (D-Lindenhurst) and Senator Charles Fuschillo, Jr. (R-Merrick) have announced the passage of legislation they authored to expand the Broad Hollow Bioscience Park (BHBP) at Farmingdale State College. The measure is expected to create hundreds of jobs on Long Island. The legislation (S.3536/A.5664) would allow Farmingdale State College to enter into lease agreements to expand the Broad Hollow Bioscience Park.
The expanded BHBP envisioned by the legislation would create a total of 787 direct and indirect jobs and an annual payroll of approximately $50 million for the region, a true success for public-private partnerships.
“The Broad Hollow Bioscience Park is a key component of Long Island’s economic engine. It has helped build up Long Island’s biotech industry, created jobs, and provided educational opportunities to students. At a time when over 116,000 Long Islanders are unemployed, this is a measure that would lead to hundreds of new jobs for local residents and tens of millions of dollars in new revenue for our economy. We need this bill to become law, and I urge Governor Cuomo to sign it,” said Senator Fuschillo.
“With this legislation, we move one step closer to making Long Island a leader of the biotechnology industry. In these difficult economic times, creating high paying, permanent jobs, is paramount. The passage of this legislation will help energize the local economy and give Farmingdale State College students the opportunity to enter this growing field through internships, research and collaboration”, said Assemblyman Sweeney.
Created by legislation authored by Assemblyman Sweeney and Senator Fuschillo, BHBP is a biotechnology research park developed on the campus of Farmingdale State College in conjunction with Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, which is widely known as one of the premiere research institutions on genetics in the world. It was there that Nobel Prize winner James Watson gave the first public presentation on the double-helix nature of DNA.
Since 2002, Farmingdale State College has held a strategic partnership with OSI Pharmaceuticals to operate a high tech bioscience facility at BHBP on campus. BHBP works in partnership with Farmingdale State College to train Long Island’s next generation of young scientists by offering internships to students in the College’s bioscience degree program and providing money for scholarships.
"Thanks to the efforts of Senator Fuschillo and Assemblyman Sweeney, this legislation greatly strengthens our efforts to ensure that a leading biotech firm will not only remain on Long Island, but also will be able to grow its research operations and contribute to the economic prosperity of the region. The synergies between the Broad Hollow Bioscience Park and the campus have enhanced greatly the exponential growth of our bioscience program, added to the research achievements of our faculty and students, and provided scholarships that enable meaningful opportunities for the next generation of scientists--all great plusses for Long Island", said Hubert Keen, President of Farmingdale State College.
“On behalf of OSI Pharmaceuticals and Astellas, I’d like to thank Senator Fuschillo and Assemblyman Sweeney for their commitment to the local bio-science community and leadership in bringing this important bill to fruition. This legislation will be a significant step forward for the residents of the State of New York, as it will enhance current and future economic and educational opportunities on Long Island,” said Naoki Okamura, chief executive officer, OSI Pharmaceuticals. “OSI and Astellas are extremely proud of the many exciting possibilities, including our potential future growth at the site, that result from this new strategic partnership between OSI, the University and the State of New York.”
Last year, OSI Pharmaceuticals was acquired by a multinational corporation, Astellas Pharma Inc., one of the world’s foremost pharmaceutical companies. As a result of OSI’s previous success at Farmingdale State College, Astellas is looking to expand OSI’s presence at BHBP to nearly 40 acres.
"It is a major step toward assuring that OSI will remain our anchor tenant, with all the job creation that it entails, and it positions Broad Hollow Bioscience Park to be a long-term contributor to the development of biotech innovations", said George LaRosa, Board Chair, Broad Hollow Bioscience Park.
Once the project is complete, Broad Hollow Bioscience Park will serve as incubator facility for small, bio-tech companies, a move which could spur the creation of more jobs and benefits to students.
The measure passed both houses of the New York State Legislature with overwhelming support. It now needs only Governor Cuomo’s signature to become law.