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2 LI biz leaders support buy-local policy

Two Long Island business leaders voiced their support for a policy that encourages businesses receiving tax incentives for new projects or expansions to source their work and supplies locally.

Kevin Law, the president of the Long Island Association and Marc Herbst, the executive director of the Long Island Contractor's association, both said buying local would aid the Long Island economy and help create jobs.

Law and Herbst made their comments in a newsletter sent out to members of the Long Island Contractor's Association Tuesday afternoon.

“We need to improve the region’s business climate and encourage Long Island companies to buy local, which will create jobs and grow the economy," Law said.

This is not the first time the buying local policy has been brought up as a way to revitalize the local economy. A July Newsday story revealed a dispute between Long Island Precast -- a Bellport company that makes concrete products -- and the Walt Whitman Mall because the mall's owner, Simon Property Group, chose an Illinois company to provide the expansion site with storm drains instead of LI Precast. Walt Whitman Mall had received a tax break from Suffolk County Industrial Development Agency -- which encourages recipients of the tax incentive to buy local -- for the expansion

Proponents of the buying local policy have pointed to it as a way to boost the regional economy and create jobs. But critics have said the policy could discourage businesses from expanding because the process is so complicated.

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