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More Jobs From Cheap Electricity

By: wwnytv.com |

A dozen jobs are being created in Gouverneur and nearly 70 jobs are being preserved in Potsdam because of cheap electricity from the state Power Authority.

The Power Authority’s Board of Trustees agreed Tuesday to supply electricity to Riverside Iron in Gouverneur and Potsdam Specialty Paper in Potsdam.

The board’s action comes on the heels of plans to help Corning expand its operations in DeKalb.

In the case of Riverside Iron, 12 jobs are being created. In the case of Potsdam Specialty Paper, 67 jobs are being protected.

Riverside Iron in Gouverneur will receive 46 kilowatts to assist in reopening its steel fabrication facility, creating 12 jobs (the facility closed in 2012).

The firm was recently approved for $200,000 in financing from the St. Lawrence County Industrial Development Agency through loan funds supported by Power Authority money.

“I am thankful to NYPA and the St. Lawrence County IDA for their efforts to help ensure the success of Riverside Iron’s fabrication facility reopening in Gouverneur,” said Eric Tessmer, president of Riverside Iron, in a statement.

“I look forward to providing long-term local job opportunities and re-establishing Riverside as a source of quality miscellaneous metal fabrications.”

Potsdam Specialty Paper will receive 2,116 kilowatts (kW) for a commitment to retain its 67 jobs and invest $14 million dollars into its facility over the next five years.

The company manufactures specialty saturated paper grades that are used in the construction, automotive, home decor, and medical industries.

“This power allocation will allow our company to continue its operations in Potsdam, securing our talented workforce and reinforcing our position as a pillar of the local economy for years to come,” said Douglass H. Drumm, operations manager, Potsdam Specialty Paper.

“I’d like to extend my thanks to Governor Cuomo and NYPA for their support.”

“It is of principle importance for economic development efforts to not only create new jobs, but also ensure the retention of existing jobs,” said Gil C. Quiniones, the Power Authority’s president and chief executive officer.

“The Governor’s ReCharge NY program has been a great success thus far in the North Country and NYPA will continue to work with business and not-for-profit organizations in the region to keep up this significant momentum.”

“As a lifelong resident of the North Country, I am pleased to see the great success of the Governor’s ReCharge NY program in our region,” said Eugene L. Nicandri, a Power Authority trustee.

“These low-cost power allocations will provide Potsdam Specialty Paper and Riverside Iron greater financial flexibility for their competitive operations.”

This is the ninth round of power allocations under the ReChargeNY program, which stems from legislation signed by the Governor in 2011. The program, administered by the Power Authority, is designed to spur economic development throughout the state by providing low-cost power to businesses and other entities that agree to create or retain jobs.

Including Tuesday’s allocations, the Governor’s program has provided approximately 27 megawatts (MW) to 24 business operations and six not-for-profit organizations in northern New York. (One megawatt equals 1,000 kW and is enough electricity to meet the needs of up to 1,000 typical homes.)

The Power Authority, under state law, also provides allocations of low-cost hydropower to Northern New York businesses from the St. Lawrence-FDR Power Project as part of the Power Authority’s Preservation Power program.

The power is provided at a price that is currently 40 percent less than wholesale market electricity in the region.