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'It's everything.' Local, state officials react to Micron's $100B investment in CNY

Mike Groll
Office of Governor Kathy Hochul
Officials announced an agreement that Micron will build a number of semiconductor chip fabrication plants in the Town of Clay

The economy of central New York, and much of upstate, will be transformed following the announcement Tuesday that tech company Micron will make a $100 billion investment to build several state-of-the-art semiconductor fabrication plants in the Town of Clay.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said he jumped up and down with joy when he heard that Micron chose the White Pine Commerce Park in Clay for the massive investment.

"Three years I’ve been trying to get this done,” Schumer said. “My dad’s from Utica and I know what New York was and what New York is and what New York can be."

Schumer says the future is transforming upstate into a new global hub for innovation and high-tech jobs. Gov. Kathy Hochul agreed, saying Micron’s plans to build four separate semiconductor fabrication plants is life-changing.

"Something so transformative in scale and possibility that the economic future of New York is beyond imagination,” said Hochul.

Micron has been in the running as a possible tenant for the White Pine site in Clay for a while now. That competition ramped up following passage this summer of the CHIPs and Science Act, which offered massive incentives to companies that want to produce computer chips in the U.S.

Mike Groll
Office of Governor Kathy Hochul
Micron CEO Sanjay Mehrotra speaking at Syracuse University Tuesday

Micron CEO Sanjay Mehrotra said central New York won out for a number of reasons.

"The diverse talent pool here, the university, the education system,” said Mehrotra. “The reliable clean water and power, alignment with Micron’s sustainability goals, and of course, the support here from the state as well. All of these factors. And this region has a history of semiconductor research and manufacturing."

Onondaga County Executive Ryan McMahon has been pushing for a deal like this at White Pine for years, touting the 50,000 jobs that come with it.

"It’s everything, from the psyche of the community, to the tangible reality that we’ll have every local trade working on building this project,” said McMahon. “We’ll have opportunities for the underemployed to get jobs they need, to recruit and train the engineers of tomorrow."

Site preparation starts next year with construction to begin in 2024. CenterState CEO President Rob Simpson said this project will change central New York for generations to come.

“When I was a kid growing up in upstate New York, I was told I had to leave to get a good job. My son, he may leave central New York, but it’s gonna be his choice. It’s not because anyone tells him he has to, because he will not have to."

New York offered a $5.5 billion incentive package to Micron, one of the largest offered by any state. Onondaga County is also contributing $25 million to the project.

Ellen produces news reports and features related to events that occur in the greater Syracuse area and throughout Onondaga County. Her reports are heard regularly in regional updates in Morning Edition and All Things Considered.