POUGHKEEPSIE – County Legislature Chairman (District 8), Hudson Valley Regional Council (HVRC) Chairman, and City of Poughkeepsie mayoral candidate Rob Rolison joined Andrew Reid, an Economic Development Specialist for New York with the US Commerce Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA), to address a group of municipal leaders, nonprofits, businesses, and local residents at a September 18 seminar at the Newburgh campus of SUNY Orange. The purpose of the speech was to raise awareness about federal economic development grants to attract, retain, and expand jobs in Hudson Valley communities identified as economically distressed. Rolison was appointed HVRC chairman in 2013.
In April 2015 HVRC produced its “Hudson Valley Region Distress Criteria Statistical Report,” a snapshot of communities in the region experiencing economic distress defined as high unemployment and low income growth to be used to determine eligibility for investment assistance through the EDA. The report identified three Dutchess County municipalities as distressed: City of Poughkeepsie, City of Beacon, and the Village of Tivoli. EDA awarded $21,053,085 to 24 New York State projects in 2013.
“Income and employment distress are primarily concentrated in our urban communities, including Poughkeepsie. The Queen City’s economy is reeling from mismanagement and the longest recession since the Great Depression. These problems will not be solved overnight, but we can begin to make the smart investments we need by exploring state and federal funding sources. Our work at HVRC can direct EDA and other job-creation funding here in order to make Poughkeepsie more competitive and improve the quality of life of its residents,” said Rolison.
The Hudson Valley Region Distress Criteria Statistical Report can be found here.