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23 Long Island downtowns vying for $10 million state grant

Hicksville won a $10 million state grant last

Hicksville won a $10 million state grant last year. This rendering shows a proposed development on the site of the former Sears store. Credit: Seritage Growth Properties

Twenty-three downtowns on Long Island will vie for a $10 million state grant to support their redevelopment plans, state officials said.

The third round of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s Downtown Revitalization Initiative attracted a record number of applicants in Nassau and Suffolk counties. The 2017 competition had 21 entries, and the 2016 contest had 20.

“We tried to really encourage a lot more participation this year…It’s like Lotto, you have to be in it to win it,” said Kevin Law, co-vice chairman of the Long Island Regional Economic Development Council and president of the Long Island Association business group. The council will recommend the winner to Albany officials.

Hicksville won last year, and Westbury won in 2016.

This year’s competition consists of 11 downtowns in Nassau and 12 in Suffolk. The officials did not name the downtowns on Tuesday.

The applications will be reviewed by the development council, which is a group of business executives, union leaders and educators appointed by Cuomo in 2011 to help guide building efforts on the Island.

The council has a July 13 deadline to recommend one downtown to the state Department of State.

Statewide, 105 applications were received for the downtown revitalization contest, down from 107 last year and 120 in 2016. One $10 million grant will be awarded in each of the state’s 10 regions.

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