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State budget includes $1 million to keep military in Mohawk Valley

By Journal Staff


ROME, N.Y. — The state has set aside $1 million to help keep military assets in the Mohawk Valley.

State Sen. Joseph Griffo (R-Rome), State Assembly members Anthony Brindisi (D-Utica), and Brian Miller (R-New Hartford) said in a joint press release that the state has allocated $3 million to support regional military assets, a third of which is set to be spent locally.

The funding, that the three said they secured in the 2018-19 state budget, includes: $500,000 for the Griffiss Local Development Corporation to help with the construction of a new headquarters location for NYSTEC, $450,000 for Oneida County to help support an unmanned aircraft systems (or UAS) test facility, $50,000 to support the Central New York Defense Alliance, which helps to protect federal assets if another base closure study were to occur.

“The Mohawk Valley has been no stranger to losing a military asset,” the release said. “Griffiss Air Force Base was forced to shut down in the 1990s due to Base Realignment and Closure cuts. The Air Force Research Laboratory in Rome, which employs approximately 1,204 civilians, military members and contractors and had an estimated $392.3 million economic impact in the 2017 fiscal year, has been threatened by previous BRAC cuts.”

 “The military assets throughout our region have a tremendous impact locally, employing many people and helping to boost our economy. This funding will help us to protect those who work at these facilities, can lead to innovative and new ideas and will assist us in our efforts to safeguard the important military assets in the Mohawk Valley,” said Griffo.

Assemblyman Brindisi said, “This funding will go a long way to help retain and enhance Rome Lab, Defense Finance and Accounting Services, and the Eastern Air Defense Sector, all major employers in our region. In recent years, the funding we have provided has been used for valuable projects, including improving infrastructure in the Griffiss Business and Technology Park,” he said.

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