Four local companies have promised to create 170 jobs in return for reductions in their electric bills by the state.
The businesses, all in Suffolk County, are receiving incentives from the state Power Authority to support expansion projects valued collectively at $127.3 million. The state aid comes through the ReCharge NY program, established in 2011 by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and the State Legislature.
Of the 910 megawatts available at reduced cost, 750 have been allocated. One megawatt equals the electricity used by 800 to 1,000 homes.
Locally, 106 companies so far will benefit from ReCharge NY over seven years. The fourth group of allocations was announced recently.
Authority chief executive Gil Quiniones said, "We understand the value of not only retaining the employment we currently have in the state, but also supporting new opportunities to create jobs and grow the economy further."
Of the latest awards, the largest, 3,700 kilowatts, went to mindSHIFT Technologies Inc., a Waltham, Mass.-based provider of information technology services to small- and medium-sized businesses. mindSHIFT wants to expand its Commack unit, investing $21.2 million and adding 30 people to its local workforce of 80.
The company was purchased about a year ago by electronics retailer Best Buy Co. for $167 million. The local office operated as Invision.com Inc. for years before being acquired by mindSHIFT in 2007 for an undisclosed sum. A mindSHIFT executive in Commack wasn't immediately available Monday to comment.
The cheap electricity is part of a larger incentive package to support mindSHIFT's local growth. On Dec. 19, Cuomo announced that Empire State Development Corp. would provide $1 million through the annual regional economic development councils' competition.
Similarly, Kedrion BioPharma Inc. received 1,716 kilowatts for improvements to its Melville blood-products factory. The $99.8-million project will create 80 jobs and protect another 150.
The company also secured $3.3 million in the regional councils' contest. Also, the Suffolk County Industrial Development Agency offered $4.8 million in tax breaks in August.
David Brochu, U.S. operations vice president for Italy-based Kedrion, told IDA officials at the time that his company had bought the factory at 155 Duryea Rd. owned by Grifols, also a producer of blood products.
Brochu said Kedrion would retain Grifols' local workforce, renovate the 105,000-square-foot building and construct a 48,000-square-foot addition. Kedrion plans to install $42 million worth of equipment.
Separately, the Power Authority will reduce the electric bills of five local companies in exchange for their promising not to fire workers. Together the five plan to invest $11.8 million in their operations.
The recipients include Love and Quiches Desserts in Freeport, which was allocated 10 kilowatts. The bakery plans a $5.2-million expansion to secure the jobs of 254 people.
Local lawmakers hailed the allocations. State Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos (R-Rockville Centre) said, "ReCharge NY is providing employers . . . with reliable, affordable power that promotes local economic investments and helps create and retain jobs."
These companies have promised to maintain their respective workforces, and in some cases to create jobs, in return for lower electric bills.
Company name (location)/Number of local employees/Number of jobs to be created
Anna Young Associates Ltd. (Freeport); 160; NA
County Frame Corp. (Holtsville); 80; NA
DiCarlo Distributors (Holtsville); 215; 10
Framerica Corp. (Yaphank); 135; 50
GiantII NewCo. (Melville); 150; 80
Love and Quiches Desserts (Freeport); 254; NA
Medford Multicare Center (Medford); 333; NA
mindSHIFT Technologies (Commack); 80; 30
Printex Packaging Corp. (Islandia); 89; NA
SOURCE: New York Power Authority