New York State’s final enacted budget for 2013-2014 includes the strongest-ever support for business incubation as a critical component of the state’s overall economic-development strategy. Through negotiations that led to the final budget, Governor Andrew Cuomo’s vision for tax-free Innovation Hot Spots was merged with key provisions of the Business Incubator Support Act proposed by Senator Martin Golden. The package also received approval from the state Assembly.
Under new statutory language included in Part C of the final “revenue bill,” incubators that follow nationally recognized best practices will be eligible to apply for recognition as a “New York State Incubator” by Empire State Development Corp., the state’s principal economic-development entity. ESDC is further empowered and funded to make grants to these designated incubators to support the kinds of business-growth services that distinguish excellent and effective incubator programs from the rest.
A subset of designated New York State Incubators with particularly strong ties to university R&D will also be eligible to apply for tax-free status for up to five years for qualifying tenant/clients. The state expects to designate and support one such “Innovation Hot Spot” in each of 10 economic regions, starting with five in the coming year.
For more information, see Governor Cuomo’s news release, the state Senate’s news release, or a specific news release from Senator Golden (see attached). Our association and our members warmly appreciate the ability of all branches of government, both legislative chambers, and all political parties to achieve a joint vision for advancing the practice of business incubation statewide.