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Low-cost power will help keep 142 defense jobs on LI

L-3 Communications Corp., seen on Moreland Road in

L-3 Communications Corp., seen on Moreland Road in Hauppauge, will get tax breaks from the Suffolk IDA to keep the defense contractor from moving 142 jobs from Hauppauge to New Jersey. Credit: Ed Betz

A defense contractor said Tuesday it would keep 142 jobs on Long Island, rather than move them to New Jersey, after receiving incentives from state and local governments.

A company representative confirmed to Newsday that L3 Technologies’ Narda-MITEQ division, which makes microwave components for communications systems and other products, will remain in Hauppauge. Incentives from New York State and Suffolk County “made it possible to . . . preserve local jobs,” the representative said in a statement.

The news came hours after Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced the state Power Authority had awarded low-cost electricity to L3 in return for its pledge to maintain the local workforce of 480 people and to add 25.

Manhattan-based L3 also promised to invest $10.8 million in its rented plant at 435 Moreland Rd. and to build an addition to accommodate 142 employees who now work in another building nearby.

The positions could have been shifted to a rented location in Camden, New Jersey, executives said in December. They said the Garden State had offered $16 million in tax breaks.

Records show L3 employees in Hauppauge earn an average of $80,400 per year.

Cuomo said yesterday L3 would receive 752 kilowatts for seven years under the Power Authority’s ReCharge NY program. A thousand kilowatts can power 800 to 1,000 homes.

In addition, the company has applied for help from Empire State Development, the state’s primary business-aid agency, and received tax breaks from the county’s Industrial Development Agency.

Cuomo also announced yesterday three other local recipients of cheap electricity from the Power Authority: Best Market Inc. in Bay Shore, Fruit crown Products Corp. in Farmingdale and Official Offset Corp. in Amityville.

The largest allocation, 2,730 kilowatts, is going to grocer Best Market for converting the former Entenmann’s bakery into a headquarters, warehouse and food production facility.

In return for the aid, Best Market will create 125 jobs in Bay Shore and invest $2 million. The company also received tax breaks from the Islip Town Industrial Development Agency and Empire State Development.

Or Raitses, vice president and general counsel at Best Market, said the power allocation represents more than 50 percent of the facility’s projected electric bill, excluding a planned retail store.

“We want to build a food hub in Bay Shore where food is produced and packaged by a number of companies,” Raitses said. “This is a great vote of confidence in our plan.”

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