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LI state-aided firms in compliance on jobs promises

Local hiring leader Broadridge Financial Solutions of Lake

Local hiring leader Broadridge Financial Solutions of Lake Success got a $1 million grant and added 318 jobs in the past few years. This is a plant in Edgewood. Photo Credit: Newsday, 2012 / Alejandra Villa

For the third year in a row, local recipients of state economic development aid did a better job of keeping promises to maintain and create jobs than did businesses elsewhere in New York.

An audit shows Long Island had a 100 percent compliance rate in 2012 among 19 projects receiving state grants or loans. Eighteen companies and research institutions were involved.

The Albany area had the worst compliance rate: 71.4 percent for 14 projects.

Locally, the hiring leader was again Broadridge Financial Solutions Inc., which has added 318 jobs in the past few years. The Lake Success-based processor of shareholder documents for public companies had a workforce of 1,924 last year, far above the 1,756 people it pledged to employ in return for a $1 million grant from the state.

Of the 18 companies and laboratories receiving assistance, 17 exceeded employment requirements, according to the audit by Empire State Development. One business -- Johnson & Hoffman LLC metal stamping -- did not meet its target but was within 15 percent, which state officials said was allowable.

Together, the local aid recipients got $14.5 million in grants and loans for pledging to employ 6,061. Their payrolls totaled 6,863 in 2012, including 1,365 new jobs.

The average cost to taxpayers for each job preserved or created on Long Island was $2,113. Statewide, the average cost per job was $3,981.

Kenneth Adams, president of Empire State Development, said the compliance rate statewide edged up last year to 90 percent from 2011's 89 percent because the economy has recovered from the recession.

He said Empire State Development is seeking $3.9 million in penalties from 20 companies who failed to keep job promises.

Four local companies weren't included in the recent audit, though they appeared in the 2012 one. Three are no longer subject to state review because they fulfilled their grant obligations, a state official said.

Another, OSI Pharmaceuticals, shut down its Farmingdale laboratory in May as part of a global consolidation effort by its Japanese parent. The state official said OSI repaid $180,000 of the $300,000 grant awarded in 2008 because it had failed to meet employment goals.

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