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SUNY sees benefits of Start-Up NY

Ellen Abbott
WRVO News File Photo
SUNY Chancellor Nancy Zimpher (right) chatting with SUNY Upstate Interim President Greg Eastwood at the New York State Fair

Start-Up NY is getting good grades from SUNY. Chancellor Nancy Zimpher says it’s taken a while, but the program is taking off on several state university campuses.

Zimpher says she didn’t expect Start-Up NY, which offers new businesses 10-year tax breaks if they set up shop on or near a college campus, to become a massive success out of the gate. But now that it’s had more than a year-and-a-half under its belt, she says new businesses with jobs in tow have settled into several SUNY campuses.

"It has allowed 19 of our campuses to host businesses. We have another 50 proposals in the hopper, and we want every campus to have this opportunity," the chancellor said.

Zimpher says among other things, SUNY is happy when businesses decide to base themselves near a SUNY school because students take part in things like product development, research and internships.  

Among those institutions taking part so far include a wide variety of schools from the University of Buffalo, to SUNY Oswego, SUNY Morrisville and the Finger Lakes Community College.  

The program had been criticized initially because it spent $53 million of taxpayer money for advertising, while the program’s first report showed a net gain of 76 jobs.    

Start-Up NY started with the goal of attracting more business and jobs, especially to upstate New York.

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.