2002-08-10 / Community

Smith Lauds Funding In State Budget

Smith Lauds Funding In State Budget

State Senator Malcolm A. Smith has praised the funding provided for a number of economic development and technology initiatives he strongly supported in the recently passed 2002-2003 State Budget.

Economic development and technology issues form part of the core of Senator Smith’s ‘H.E.E.T.’ (Health, Education, Economic Development and Technology) agenda, based on his long experience with these issues throughout his career in public service.

"Since I was first elected to the State Senate, I vowed to turn up the ‘H.E.E.T.’ in Albany, by fighting to pass and fund important Health, Education, Economic department and Technology initiatives that benefit New Yorkers," said Senator Smith. "This budget, though imperfect, provides funding for key economic development and technology measures that I strongly support, and that will help improve our economic outlook."

Along these lines, Senator Smith is delighted that six new Empire Zones will be created to provide tax incentives and other resources to depressed communities for economic revitalization. In addition, the budget permits four other new Empire Zones to go forward, to bring the number of Empire Zones throughout the state to 72.

Senator Smith also supported the allocation of $350 million to the Excelsior Linked Deposit Program, which helps to provide access capitol for small and other businesses in New York State through low-cost loans.

"As a small business owner myself, I know that small business are the backbone of New York’s economy," Senator Smith said. "We must strive to create an atmosphere that encourages their growth, and the creation of Empire Zones and the funding of initiatives such as the Excelsior Linked Deposit Program help do just that."

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