Orange County Partnership - News

$34 Million set for local projects

By Jessica Dinapoli
Times Herald-Record
Published: 2:00 AM - 12/20/12

Gov. Andrew Cuomo's office announced $34 million in funding Wednesday for projects in Orange, Ulster and Sullivan counties, including a medical college, a distribution center and a Hudson Riverfront promenade.

The awards, among more than $700 million to be distributed statewide, are a combination of tax breaks and grants from a variety of state agencies and programs, said Jason Conwall, a spokesman for Empire State Development, the agency that administers New York's 10 regional economic development councils.

The projects must be well under way before the state will provide the tax breaks or disburse the grants, which are subject to clawbacks if projects don't meet initial projections, Conwall said.

Planning, approvals ahead
Touro College will receive $1 million to help cover building costs for a planned college of osteopathic medicine in the former Horton Hospital in Middletown.

"Our health care indicators in the entire region are below the national average, and this is going to help that," said Tony Danza, the project's developer.

Alan Kadish, president of Touro, said the college is now seeking approvals needed to open the school.

A $500,000 award will go to the Matrix Distribution Park in the Town of Newburgh, first introduced close to five years ago. The planned 550,000-square-foot manufacturing and distribution center near the intersection of the New York State Thruway and Interstate 84 aims to attract a Fortune 500-caliber company.

As much as $2.5 million will go to the Center for Discovery's Regional Children's Assessment Center planned for Sullivan County.

The proposed 60-bed center and specialty hospital for children with autism, severe development disabilities and other medical frailties could employ 300 people.

A Kingston-area project is on tap to receive as much as $1.2 million. The Hudson Landing Promenade proposes to revitalize an old cement plant on a 524-acre parcel overlooking the Hudson River. The project would include 75,000 square feet of commercial space and 1,650 housing units, according to a press release from the Ulster County Legislature.

Millions in awards
Other projects in Orange, Ulster and Sullivan counties that will get a share of the $34 million in funding announced by Gov. Andrew Cuomo's office:
$10 million for the renovation of Burton Towers, 126 low-income rental housing units in the City of Newburgh.
$7 million for Southeast Towers Preservation, a rental housing complex for senior citizens in Middletown.
$1.5 million to convert a recently closed Kingston elementary school into a satellite campus of SUNY Ulster.
About $1.4 million for Crystal Run Healthcare's new medical office in Monroe.
$1 million for Mount Saint Mary College's Dominican Center project, expected to open in January 2014.
$1 million for the Center for Global Advanced Manufacturing, which will support manufacturing firms.

Staff writer Nathan Brown contributed to this report.