Low-cost hydropower supports creation of 136 upstate NY jobs

Photo courtesy of the Robert Moses Niagara Hydroelectric Power Station

Three New York businesses will receive low-cost hydropower for investing nearly $55 million in expansions and creating 136 jobs.

New York Power Authority Board of Trustees awarded low-cost hydropower allocations to Advance 2000, Niagara Refining, and Sunrise Farms.

“We need businesses to stay and prosper, which means utilizing every resource we have in the most strategic way to support the continued growth of New York employers,” Gov. Andrew Cuomo said in a news release. “Low-cost hydropower is a critical asset to anchoring businesses and generating job growth through the state.”

The hydropower—currently more than 40 percent lower than wholesale market electricity in the region—is drawn from two blocks of electricity generated at NYPA’s Niagara Power Project known as Expansion Power and Replacement Power. In addition to new permanent jobs, the capital investments by the companies are expected to support dozens of construction jobs.

NYPA works aggressively to create jobs throughout New York by allocating the low-cost power to spur business expansions, said CEO Gil Quiniones.

“Every effort NYPA can make toward alleviating a firm’s financial concerns is a proactive step in our economic development efforts,” Quiniones said.

Advance 2000, of Williamsville, was awarded a seven-year hydropower allocation as an incentive to expand its operations in the Buffalo-Niagara region.

The company delivers information technology services to a variety of industries, including corporate health care and government agencies. It to acquire a manufacturing building in Amherst to meet demand for hosted voice and data services and cloud computing for a variety of new companies nationwide. The firm has committed to creating 67 jobs.

Niagara Refining, of Depew, also was given a seven-year hydropower allocation as an incentive for expanding its operations in the Buffalo-Niagara region with a new refining plant. The facility will provide an independent source of needed materials for the production of tungsten carbide powder. The company produces the materials for the chemical processing of refractory metals. It will hire 50 new employees over the next three years.

Sunrise Farms, a yogurt manufacturer in Chenango County, was approved for the third hydropower allocation of 375 kW. The Village of Greene, which is a municipal customer of the Power Authority, applied on behalf of Sunrise Farms for the low-cost hydropower through NYPA’s Municipal and Rural Electric Cooperative Economic Program, which utilizes a 54-megawatt block of hydropower .

Hydropower from the 54-MW block is allocated to individual systems to meet the increased electric load that results from eligible new or expanding businesses. Sunrise Farms will be expanding its Greek yogurt manufacturing facility, adding 19 full-time jobs.

Governor’s Office news release

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