By Ed Bartholomew
EDC Warren County is a private, nonprofit organization governed by an independent board of directors. The corporation’s mission is to improve the quality of life of the county’s residents by helping businesses and industry grow and prosper.
EDC holds an annually executed contract for services with Warren County to perform economic development services including but not limited to the following:
• Support existing companies through technical and regulatory assistance and act as a liaison between business and government.
• Market county and regional assets to prospective investors, employers and site selectors.
• Coordinate incentive and assistance programs that include interaction with local and state agencies.
• Assist and advocate on behalf of Warren County businesses and municipalities to recruit funding and grant opportunities that are available from sources such as federal government, state Consolidated Funding Application and state agencies, private investment sources and not for profit organizations, public utilities.
• Offer site selection and/or available space and buildings assistance for new incoming prospective businesses as well as existing companies seeking to expand and grow.
• Assist county and its municipalities with planning for future growth, infrastructure needs current and future, supporting and participating in workforce development initiatives and organizations.
EDC’s focus for the coming year include:
• Infrastructure development and capacity enhancement.
• Broadband/cell coverage expansion and capacity.
• Targeted industry support.
• Business retention and expansion.
• Continued recruitment/advocacy for state and federal funding for key projects.
• Workforce development with emphasis on business services.
EDC has been a leader in efforts to revitalize Warren County’s urban centers and rural hamlets through a variety of programs available through state and federal sources. In Glens Falls, EDC helped to obtain a $10 million award through Governor Cuomo’s Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI) in 2016 which has generated new investment and activity in addition to addressing an approved list of improvements and upgrades to defined areas within the city.
EDC helped Glens Falls access Restore New York program funding through Empire State Development (ESD) for several key restoration projects that have helped to attract new business and residents to the downtown area. Over the past decade, EDC has conservatively estimated new public and private combined investments totaling over $200 million in the downtown Glens Falls area.
Last year, EDC was able to assist in the recruitment of two new federal Opportunity Zones within the county to offer targeted investment to distressed areas.
EDC identifies and strives to maximize major employment sectors in the county including professional services, manufacturing, finance and banking, health care, hospitality and destination tourism to list just a few. Warren County enjoys a high level of sports and recreation venues and activities.
A recent state study indicates that Warren County accounts for over $628 million of the roughly $1.5 billion of visitor spending generated annually in the Adirondack region.
EDC’s extensive outreach and connection to local business has helped to spark new investment from several entities within the county. Some recent projects and expansions over recent years includes:
• Etain Health, a new facility manufacturing state-approved medical marijuana products in Chestertown.
• Bonacio/Galesi’s mixed-use development at 14 Hudson Ave. in Glens Falls.
• Flomatic Valve plant expansion in Pruyns Island Business Park, Glens Falls.
• Finch Paper’s plant and equipment modernization and upgrades in Glens Falls.
• AngioDynamics plant restructuring and upgrades in Queensbury.
• Medline’s plant restructuring and upgrades in Glens Falls.
• Martha’s Ice Cream’s facility expansion, and new equipment for expanded line of products in Lake George.
• Nettle Meadows Cheese expanded facilities and equipment in Thurman and Lake Luzerne.
• JUST Water’s additional space in Queensbury for increase demand in products shipped nationally and internationally.
By Ed Bartholomew