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Economic Incentives and Resources

State Incentives

MWBE Program

Governor Cuomo launched the MWBE Certification Campaign to encourage minority and women business owners to certify with the State and take advantage of current and upcoming State procurement opportunities and billions of dollars in State procurement opportunities.

Under the Governor's leadership, the State has certified more than 4,300 MWBEs and recertified more than 3,600 MWBEs. In 2014, the Governor pledged to increase MWBE certification by an additional 2,000 businesses, a goal that the State exceeded in January 2016. As a result, the number of State-certified firms has more than doubled in just five years. Keeping with his commitment to MWBEs and the small business community, Governor Cuomo has pledged to certify another 2,000 firms over the next two years.

Click here to learn how to use the MWBE Certification Assessment Tool

Tax Incentives from Empire State Development

Empire State Development, New York State's business and economic development agency, offers a variety of tax incentives, business incentives and tax credits in New York State, all designed to benefit small or expanding businesses as well as film and TV production companies.

Click here to see the entire list of tax incentive programs from ESD

Brownfield Cleanup Program (BCP) tax credits

The Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) administers the Brownfield Cleanup Program (BCP) and determines who is eligible to participate in the program. New York State offers three refundable tax credits under the BCP. The tax credits offered are the:

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Centers for Advanced Technology (CAT)

The CAT program, created in 1983, facilitates a continuing program of basic and applied research, development and technology transfer in multiple technological areas, in collaboration with and through the support of private industry. CATs play a critical role in spurring technology-based applied research and economic development in the state; promoting national and international research collaboration and innovation; and leveraging New York's research expertise and funding with investments from the federal government, foundations, businesses, venture capital firms and other entities.

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Centers of Excellence (COE)

NYSTAR funds 13 Centers of Excellence to foster collaboration between the academic research community and the business sector to develop and commercialize new products and technologies, to promote critical private sector investment in emerging high-technology fields in New York State, and to create and expand technology-related businesses and employment. 

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Empire State Jobs Retention Program

The Empire State Jobs Retention Program was created to provide financial incentives to retain strategic businesses and jobs that are at risk of leaving the state due to the impact on business operations from a natural disaster. Firms admitted to the Empire State Jobs Retention Program may qualify for a jobs tax credit of 6.85 percent of wages per impacted job that is retained in NYS. Impacted jobs mean those jobs of the firm existing at a location(s) within a county declared an emergency by the governor on the day before the event occurred that led to the emergency declaration

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Empire State Economic Development Fund Program

The Empire State Economic Development Fund is flexible, providing a range of assistance to ensure that the state is meeting the diversity of business needs.

EDF funds assist with:

  • Construction, expansion and rehabilitation of facilities

  • Acquisition of machinery and equipment

  • Working capital

  • Training full-time, permanent employees

Funds can be used for:

  • Real estate and land acquisition

  • Demolition

  • Construction and renovations

  • Site and infrastructure

  • Machinery and equipment

  • Inventory

  • Construction-related planning and design

  • Training

  • Soft costs

  • Feasibility planning studies

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Excelsior Jobs Program

Firms in the Excelsior Jobs Program may qualify for four fully refundable tax credits.  Businesses claim the credits over a benefit period of up to 10 years as established in the preliminary schedule of benefits.  To earn credits, firms must first meet and maintain established job and investment thresholds outlined in Program Eligibility below:

Excelsior Jobs Tax Credit:  

  • A credit of up to 6.85% of wages per net new job.

  • For a qualified green project a credit of up to 7.5% of wages per net new job.

Excelsior Investment Tax Credit:

  • A credit valued at 2% of qualified investments.

  • For a qualified green project a credit valued at 5% of qualified investments.

Excelsior Research and Development Tax Credit:

  • A credit of 50% of the portion of the Federal Research and Development tax credit that relates to expenditures in NYS up to credit up to 6% of research expenditures attributable to activities conducted in NYS. 

  • For a qualified green project a credit of 50% of the portion of the Federal Research and Development tax credit that relates to expenditures in NYS up to 8% of research expenditures attributable to activities conducted in NYS.

Excelsior Real Property Tax Credit: 

  • Available to firms locating in certain distressed areas and to firms in targeted industries that meet higher employment and investment thresholds (Regionally Significant Project).

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Industrial Development Agencies

The purposes of Industrial Development Agencies (IDAs) are to promote, develop, encourage and assist in the acquiring, constructing, reconstructing, improving, maintaining, equipping and furnishing industrial, manufacturing, (civic facilities), warehousing, commercial, research and recreation facilities including industrial pollution control facilities, educational or cultural facilities, railroad facilities, horse racing facilities and continuing care retirement communities, and thereby advance the job opportunities, health, general prosperity and economic welfare of the people of the state of New York and to improve their recreation opportunities, prosperity and standard of living.

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Investment Tax Credit (ITC)

The ITC is available to manufacturers. The Investment Tax Credit (ITC) is 5% of the first $350 million of new or expanded manufacturing production facilities and 4% of investments over $350 million. The employment incentive credit (EIC) is based on increases from base year employment and equals 1.5%, 2.0%, and 2.5% of the ITC amount if current year employment is 101%, 102%, or 103% of base year employment, respectively.

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New Markets Tax Credit Program

The New Markets Tax Credit Program (NMTC Program) provides investment capital for operating companies and real estate development projects in order to foster job creation and community development in low-income communities throughout New York State. 

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New York Manufacturing Extension Partnership (NY MEP) 

The New York Manufacturing Extension Partnership (NY MEP) is a network of organizations that provide growth and innovation services to small and mid-sized manufacturers in every corner of the state to help them create and retain jobs, increase profits, and save time and money. 

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Recharge New York Program

ReCharge NY provides businesses and nonprofits with stable, predictable pricing and opens the door to other business-enabling programs from NYPA.  With long-term energy price stability, recipients can focus on retaining or creating jobs, strengthening operations, investing in their operations, and remaining successful.  ReCharge NY is available statewide for business retention, expansion, and attraction.  Please contact to learn more.

Regional Economic Development Council Grants

In 2011, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo created ten Regional Economic Development Councils (REDC) and the Consolidated Funding Application (CFA) to advance the administrations efforts to improve New Yorks business climate and expand economic growth. Each year the REDC releases a list of grants available. 

View 2019 grants list

Start-Up NY Program

Start-Up New York is a new program that creates tax-free zones for businesses on college campuses. Tax-free space can be located on:

  • Vacant space in campus buildings

  • Vacant land owned by the college

  • 200,000 square feet of vacant land or building space within 1 mile of the campus

  • Business incubator with affiliation with a SUNY campus.

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Federal Incentives

Economic Development Administration

The U.S. Economic Development Administration's investment policy is designed to establish a foundation for sustainable job growth and the building of durable regional economies throughout the United States. This foundation builds upon two key economic drivers - innovation and regional collaboration. The EDA offers a number of funding opportunities for businesses in New York State.

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National Institutes of Health

NIH is the largest public funder of biomedical research in the world, investing more than $32 billion a year to enhance life, and reduce illness and disability. NIH funded research has led to breakthroughs and new treatments, helping people live longer, healthier lives, and building the research foundation that drives discovery. Through its grant program, NIH offers funding for New York businesses. 

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Small Business Adminstration

Created in 1953, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) continues to help small business owners and entrepreneurs pursue the American dream. The SBA is the only cabinet-level federal agency fully dedicated to small business and provides counseling, capital, and contracting expertise as the nations only go-to resource and voice for small businesses. The SBA offers a number of funding programs for businesses in NYS.

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United States Department of Agriculture

The USDA offers a variety of funding for farmers and agricultural businesses from loans to innovation grants. 

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United States Department of Defense

The mission of the Department of Defense is to provide the military forces needed to deter war and to protect the security of our country. Through their mission, DoD offers a variety of grants and funding opportunities for New York Businesses.

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United States Department of Energy

The mission of the Energy Department is to ensure America's security and prosperity by addressing its energy, environmental, and nuclear challenges through transformative science and technology solutions. DOE offers a number of grants for businesses addressing these challenges.

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United States Department of Labor

The mission of the U.S. Department of Labor is to foster, promote, and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers, and retirees of the United States; improve working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and assure work-related benefits and rights. DOL offers a variety of grants for workforce development.

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United States Department of Housing and Urban Development

HUD offers a variety of grants to support the growth and sustainability of America's cities. 

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United States Department of Transportation

The mission of the Department of Transportation is to serve the United States by ensuring a fast, safe, efficient, accessible and convenient transportation system that meets our vital national interests and enhances the quality of life of the American people, today and into the future. DOT offers grants to New York businesses to enhance its transportation system.

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