David Robinson, The Buffalo News
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David Robinson

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David Robinson is the deputy business editor for The News, where has worked since graduating from Syracuse University in 1985. A New Hampshire native, he started out in the News' Tonawanda bureau and moved into the business news department in October 1987, exactly a week after the stock market crash.

SolarCity became the nation’s biggest installer of residential rooftop solar energy by offering to lease solar panels with no upfront costs. Now, times are changing, and so is SolarCity. Homeowners are showing a greater desire to own the solar panels they put on their roof, so SolarCity is moving away from its leasing model in favor of allowing consumers to take ou…

National Grid is proposing a rate hike that would result in a residential electricity customer's monthly bill increasing 14 percent, or $11.23, and a residential natural gas customer's monthly bill rising 14 percent, or $10.38. The state Public Service Commission must approve the request after a review process that is expected to last 11 months. If approved, the hikes w…

The value of Rand Capital's investment portfolio slipped by 1 percent as the Buffalo venture capital firm reduced its valuation on a some of its investments. The net asset value of Rand's investments slipped to $32.3 million, or $5.10 per share, at the end of March, compared with $32.6 million, or $5.16 per share, at the end of last year. During the first quarter, Ra…

The Erie County Industrial Development Agency had a record-setting day on Wednesday. The economic development agency approved tax breaks for seven projects – the largest number of projects that it has provided subsidies for in a single meeting since it was created in 1970, agency officials said. "It shows the economic development activity that is happening in our r…

A Canadian logistics company on Friday took the wraps off its new storage and distribution facility in a Sanborn industrial park that doubles as a foreign trade zone. BorderWorx Logistics, which had 10 employees, is pledging to create 86 new jobs because of the expansion in the Vantage Center Industrial Park. Because the facility is located in the Niagara County Fore…

National Fuel Gas Co.'s delivery rates will rise by 2 percent in May after state regulators on Thursday granted the Amherst natural gas utility its first rate increase in nine years. The  $5.9 million rate hike approved by the state Public Service Commission was 86 percent less than National Fuel had requested last year and more than $3 million less than a state admini…

Heading into this week, Justin Jacobs was a dissident shareholder arguing for a shakeup at Ecology & Environment. At lunchtime on Thursday, Jacobs was heading into his first board meeting at the environmental services company's Lancaster headquarters as one of two new directors backed by the activist Connecticut investment firm where Jacobs is a managing partner. …

Hiring cooled a bit in the Buffalo Niagara region during March, but it remained fairly robust by local standards. The region added 5,100 jobs during March, buoyed by a flurry of hiring by local health care and social assistance firms, as well as temporary help agencies, the state Labor Department said Thursday. The region added jobs at a 0.9 percent annual pace durin…

By the time you read this, Julie Molloy already will be settled in Paris, beginning one of the more unusual worker enrichment and training initiatives in the Buffalo Niagara region. Molloy, a designer at Buffalo branding and strategy agency Block Club, is spending the next six weeks in Paris. It's not a vacation. She'll be working from her temporary home away from ho…

The good times are continuing for Buffalo Niagara manufacturers. With production on  the upswing, more new orders flowing in and hiring on the rise, business at the region's manufacturers strengthened for the seventh straight month during March, a new survey of local purchasing managers found. The improvement during March wasn't quite as robust as it was in February…

Taylor Devices' third-quarter profits tumbled by 71 percent as the North Tonawanda shock absorber manufacturer was stung by falling sales of its seismic protection and aerospace products. Douglas P. Taylor, the company's president, noted that the decline was partly due to delays in some new seismic and defense contracts, coupled with difficult comparisons against record…

There's one thing that really stands out during the Buffalo Billion era beyond the money. It's the extraordinary lack of dissent over an economic development plan that has shaped almost every major economic decision in the Buffalo Niagara region over the past six years. We have a plan. We've been sticking to it. And we haven't been bickering about it. Think …

No matter what happens in Washington with potential budget cuts, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo is committed to the more than $500 million in initiatives in his Buffalo Billion II economic development program. "The $500 million is safe," Cuomo said Tuesday during a meeting with reporters and editors at The Buffalo News. Cuomo's pledge is significant because the new state budge…

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo got to take the first Uber ride in upstate Tuesday on his way to a stop in Buffalo. Cuomo and Howard Zemsky, the CEO for Empire State Development, took an Uber ride to the Rev. Dr. Bennett Smith Sr. Family Life Center on Michigan Avenue. New York City-based driver Tariq Nawaz, a Buffalo native, was at the wheel. Nawaz said he might be able to mov…

The controversial Start-Up NY economic development program that granted lucrative tax breaks to businesses has created 288 new jobs in Western New York in its first three years, a new state report said. The 288 jobs at the 43 companies participating in the Start-Up NY program in Western New York jobs amounted to 40 percent of the 722 net new jobs that were created la…