Assemblyman Joe Borelli (R,C,I-South Shore) today slammed the “START-UP NY” program after the release of a mandated report showing that it has cost taxpayers $53 million while creating a whopping 76 jobs. START-UP NY attempts to create jobs by establishing tax-free zones for new companies rooted on university campuses. Borelli has been critical of the governor’s START-UP NY program since its introduction in 2013.
Empire State Development reported that the 54 companies approved last year have only created 76 of the 2,085 jobs they promised. The companies also promised $91.3 million in investment, and have so far delivered on only $1.7 million of that, according to the report.
“This report further proves what I have been saying from the start, START-UP NY is a fundamentally-flawed gimmick that fails to deliver real tax relief where it’s needed most,” said Borelli. “From the very beginning, this program pitted different areas of the state against one another by picking winners and losers; it’s been nothing but an affront to all the existing small businesses in New York State, especially those on Staten Island. The plan essentially acknowledged that the state’s tax structure is smothering small businesses, and then failed to address the actual problem. Now that these numbers are released, it proves this program is not working and is far from a real solution to help New York build its economy.”
Borelli noted that these findings were particularly pertinent due to the recent report released by the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). The report ranks economic competitiveness across the nation, with New York State coming in dead last.
Borelli also recently called on Gov. Cuomo and the Legislature to abandon the longstanding practice of raiding the New York Power Authority’s (NYPA) funds of hundreds of millions of dollars and remitting them to the state’s General Fund to be spent on START-UP NY and other advertising programs.
“Each year, the raiding of NYPA’s coffers comes at the expense of New Yorkers, who benefit from the many clean-energy production innovations provided by NYPA. Taking money from NYPA and spending it on questionable advertising programs like START-UP NY is not just dubious, it’s insulting,” Borelli concluded.