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Cuomo budget short on new economic development initiatives

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo's proposed budget did not mention any additional Buffalo Billion programs.

He proposed $750 million for an eighth round of Regional Economic Development Councils, which set regional economic development priorities and compete against each other for funding allocations.

Cuomo also proposed continuing projects through the Upstate Revitalization Initiative, $100 million for a third round of the Downtown Revitalization Initiative and $200 million for the New York Works Economic Development Fund. That fund provides grants to projects that facilitate creating or retaining jobs, or fund infrastructure improvements to help attract new businesses or expand existing businesses.

Dottie Gallagher-Cohen, president and CEO of the Buffalo Niagara Partnership, said while the group applauded Cuomo's "ongoing and renewed focus on economic development, especially in Buffalo Niagara. New York state continues to be one of the highest taxed and overly regulated places to own and operate a business. The governor and state legislature must work together to address the root problems that continue to hold back New York's economy and curb its ability to retain and attract employers."

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