Yates with no turbines would be attractive community for STAMP professionals
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced on Thursday, Oct. 7, that 1366 Technologies, a manufacturer of technologies for the solar energy industry, will establish its first large commercial Direct Wafer production plant and significantly grow its workforce at the high-tech Science and Technology Advanced Manufacturing Park in Alabama, Genesee County.
Construction of the manufacturing facility will require two phases during which the company will create at least 1,000 new jobs within 30 minutes commute from the Town of Yates.
Over the course of the multi-phase project, 1366 will invest approximately $700 million, including a $100 million initial investment, becoming the largest economic development project in the history of Genesee County.
STAMP project final growth vector indicates 10,000 local jobs to be created at the site from numerous hi-tech business anchors. Construction of the first phase of the project (1366 Technologies) is slated to begin no later than Q2 of 2016 and is expected to be completed in 2017.
The New York State incentive package includes up to $56.3 million and up to 8.5 megawatts of low-cost hydropower, As we have always known, there is significant hydropower capacity in Western New York and it is proven by the use of low-cost hydropower to drive this largest economic development project in Genesee County history.
It is important to note here that the abundance of low cost hydropower in Western New York (ie: Niagara Falls) negates the need for any and all power generated by the proposed Industrial Wind Turbine Emplacement Project known as Lighthouse Wind. APEX’s Lighthouse Wind has been rendered irrelevant for this project BY WATER!!!
The approval of the STAMP project and it use of low-cost hydropower is of significant interest to the Town of Yates. 1366 Technologies will utilize this low-cost power to recruit and employ high tech, engineering personnel at a $100,000 average annual salary.
Interestingly, these same professionals will be looking for a great place to live, raise and educate their children.
They will be spending that $100,000 average wage on homes, schools, goods and services. The competition for those people and dollars will be fierce and Yates needs to be prepared to compete for those people and dollars.
Given what we have in the Town of Yates, professionals will gladly drive 30 minutes, in order to live in the beautiful, rural, lakeside, creekside community that is Yates.
Whether we want to accept this or not, we, the Town of Yates are at a crossroads and the choices are:
1. Prepare our town to be a highly desirable location where young professionals will buy homes, goods, services and educate their children in one of the most highly ranked school districts in the State AND PAY TAXES? OR
2. Render our town an industrial wasteland by supporting the APEX Industrial Wind Turbine Emplacement project IN EXCHANGE FOR AN ANNUAL TOWN PILOT PAYMENT OF $40,000?
The choice seems clear. Option 1 is a place where all would want to live. Option 2 is a place all would avoid like the plague.
Options 1 and 2 are mutually exclusive. You can’t have both.
The Town of Yates needs a plan to take advantage of the economic development awarded to Genesee County and ensure that APEX’s Lighthouse Wind Industrial Wind Turbine Emplacement project never sees the light of day.
John B. Riggi
President, Save Ontario Shores, Inc.
Republican candidate Yates Town Board