April 25, 2014
Albany, NY

Governor Cuomo Announces Approval for Regional Center in Capital Region to Promote Foreign Investment

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Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the approval of a program to establish a Regional Center in the Capital Region for attracting foreign investment and creating jobs, as well as opportunities for housing, education and entertainment. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security approved the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program application, which was facilitated by the Center for Economic Growth (CEG).
 
As the State works to attract businesses and jobs from across the nation, we must also look overseas to lure global investors and entrepreneurs to start and grow their companies in New York, Governor Cuomo said. Building on the launch of our Global NY program to make the State more attractive for international investment, we are pleased to announce federal approval for the EB-5 Investor Program here in the Capital Region. With this approval, the Capital Region will be more attractive than ever before to businesses from overseas interested in expanding their investments here in the United States.
 
The project was awarded $125,000 by the Capital Region Economic Development Council, which aims to open new doors for business and create greater opportunities for new and expanding enterprises in the region. The EB-5 program also supports the Governor's new Global NY initiative, part of the fourth round of Regional Economic Development Councils, which will recognize and reward plans that incorporate global marketing and export strategies in an effort to attract more international investment.
 
Capital Region Economic Development Council Co-Chairs James J. Barba and Robert J. Jones said, "This approval gives us the green light to establish a Regional Center in the Capital area, an important building block as the Council moves forward with its strategy to support Governor Cuomo's vision for creating regional business climates that foster economic growth through new business opportunities, capital investment, and job creation."
 
CEG President & CEO F. Michael Tucker said, "The approval of an EB-5 Regional Investment Center for the Capital Region is another important business attraction and investment tool. The Regional Center is an asset for job creation and further bolsters our region's global stature as a destination for international business, talent, and students."
 
CEG has contracted with Prime Regional Center, LLC, an affiliate of Prime Companies headquartered in Cohoes, which will operate the Regional Center. CEG contributed $12,500 to the $137,500 project, and was responsible for overseeing Prime's preparation and filing of the application.
 
Once the Center is operational, CEG will assist Prime with marketing and promoting the EB-5 program and the benefits it offers to potential foreign investors as well as targeted communities and industries. CEG will also assist foreign investors and businesses seeking capital by connecting them to existing State and local programs to create good, quality jobs, and will expand export opportunities through partnerships and investments. The Prime Regional Center, LLC will initially service a multi-county area of Upstate New York that includes the eight counties of the Capital Region, as well as specific counties in the Southern Tier, Mohawk Valley and Central New York.
 
Kenneth Raymond, Managing Partner of the Prime Regional Center, LLC said, "Prime Companies is excited about establishing and operating a Regional Investment Center. We look forward to facilitating investments that help to grow existing regional businesses, create new opportunities, and further enhance the Capital Region's high quality of life."
 
The EB-5 program was created by Congress in 1990 and makes permanent residence, or Green Cards, available to qualified individuals seeking U.S. residency based on their creating new jobs in the country through investment in new or financially troubled commercial enterprises. The Regional Center program requires that foreign investors make capital investments of either $500,000 or $1 million in a commercial enterprise located within the U.S. The investment must create 10 full time jobs for qualifying residents within two years of the foreign investor's admission to the country.
 
The Regional Economic Development Council initiative is a key component of the Governor's approach to State investment and economic development. The Regional Councils have redefined the way New York invests in jobs and economic growth by putting in place a community-based, bottom up approach and establishing a competitive process for State resources. As a result of the first three rounds of awards, more than $195 million in resources have been awarded to support more than 272 regionally significant economic development and community revitalization projects in the Capital Region. As part of that process, $125,000 in funding was awarded to the Center for Economic Growth from Empire State Development in Round 1.
 
ESD President, CEO & Commissioner Kenneth Adams said, "ESD congratulates CEG and the Capital Region Economic Development Council on the approval of its EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program application. This project is a unique approach to stimulating the local economy through job creation and capital investment and aligns well with the Governor's new initiative, Global NY, designed to reach new markets abroad and attract foreign capital investment to New York State."
 
Congressman Paul Tonko said, Job creation and economic opportunity remain my top priorities in Congress. With this announcement, and the collaboration between local developers and the Governors office, the Capital Region is poised to continue to be a hotbed for innovation and invention. As an area that has long been home to an entrepreneurial spirit combined with a strong work ethic and openness toward immigrants seeking a better tomorrow, the EB-5 program is a hand in glove fit and one I am proud to have supported as early as 2012.
 
State Senator Neil Breslin said, This new Regional Investment Center will help grow the Capital Regions economy and incentivize business development and growth. Common sense investments are the key to building a strong local economy and ensuring our regions long-term stability and prosperity. I applaud Governor Cuomo and the Capital Region Economic Development Council for todays announcement and I look forward to continuing our efforts to encourage investment and growth in the greater Albany community.
 
Assemblymember Phil Steck said, Establishing a Regional Investment Center in the Capital Region will create new opportunities for local businesses and greater possibilities for our community. Attracting international investments to our area is an important step toward growing our economy, creating good-paying jobs and increasing our quality of life. I look forward to continuing to work with civic leaders and community members to foster a stronger business climate throughout our region.
 
Albany County Executive Daniel P. McCoy said, This is good news for Albany County as we continue to work with our partners to grow and diversify our economy. I want to commend the Capital Region Economic Development Council for its efforts on this initiative and working with local officials to advance innovative economic development strategies.
  
Town of Colonie Supervisor Paula A. Mahan said, The approval of an EB-5 investment center for the Capital Region offers an excellent opportunity for continued economic growth. This new initiative reflects Gov. Andrew Cuomos focus on fostering regional coordination of economic development efforts in New York State, building a better business environment for all.
 
To learn more about the EB-5 Program, please contact Jon Kelley with Prime Companies at [email protected] or 518- 281-6477.
 
To learn more about each regional council and their economic development plans, visit www.regionalcouncils.ny.gov.

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