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Candidates for governor disagree on upstate New York economic recovery

Ken Lund
Downtown Buffalo, NY.

With less than five weeks to go until Election Day, Gov. Andrew Cuomo says upstate New York is much improved economically from when he came into office four years ago.

Cuomo said the impact of large-scale investments throughout upstate, including the famed "Buffalo Billion," designed to create thousands of jobs in the western portion of the state, are rejuvenating the economy.

"If you're not from Buffalo, you can't appreciate it," Cuomo said. "Unemployment went from like eight percent down to six percent. It's not just the new businesses and statistics. There is a feeling in that town. It is a different town. It is a different place than it was four years ago."

He says although the "Buffalo Billion" was the most publicized, other cities like Syracuse and Rochester also received investments and are seeing improvement.

"I'll bet you Rochester got $200 million in investments and Rochester is doing better," Cuomo said. "Unemployment all across upstate New York is doing much, much better. We had the largest one-year drop in unemployment history in upstate New York last year. So it's undeniable that upstate New York is doing better."

But Republican candidate for governor Rob Astorino has repeatedly said Cuomo's initiatives aren't working. Astorino says New York needs to revamp its business climate and overhaul the hundreds of thousands of regulations currently on the books.