Low-Cost Power Spurs Job Growth in Rome, Onondaga County

Michael Saltzman

June 24, 2003 


HOLTSVILLE—New York Power Authority trustees Tuesday approved three allocations of low-cost Economic Development Power to Central New York companies that will create 500 new jobs at the Industrial Park at the former Griffiss Air Force Base in Rome and add 200 new jobs in the Onondaga County communities of Cicero and Warners.

“This is great news for Central New York. Two thriving companies will grow and add substantially to their payrolls and a major company providing aircraft maintenance, repairs and overhauls for commercial airlines and corporate aircraft will create 500 jobs at the old Griffiss Air Base,” said Louis P. Ciminelli, chairman of the Power Authority. “The project in Rome and the expansion projects at ICM Controls and Sysco Foods are great opportunities for NYPA to help Governor Pataki’s job-growth activities in Central New York.”

Power Authority trustees, meeting at the Richard M. Flynn Power Plant here, approved an allocation of 2,000 kilowatts (kw) to the Griffis Local Development Corporation (GLDC), which will provide the power to Commodore Aviation, Inc., a company currently located out-of-state, but planning a move to Rome. With the move, it will change its name to Empire Air Center.

“This power allocation is just one piece of New York State’s significant commitment to secure Empire Air Center as an anchor aviation tenant at Griffiss Business and Technology Park.  We thank Governor Pataki for his continued great support for Griffiss Park’s development as a job center, and the Power Authority for its support of employment growth in the Mohawk Valley.  Thanks to the partnership which brought the company here, Empire Air Center will provide job opportunities to Mohawk Valley residents for many years to come,” said Steven J. DiMeo, President of Mohawk Valley EDGE and Griffiss Local Development Corporation.

The trustees also approved a 500-kw allocation to ICM Controls Corp. of Cicero and 400 kw for Sysco Food Services Corp. of Warners.

ICM Controls manufactures electronic controls used in heating, ventilating and air conditioning applications around the world. Located in Cicero, the company has grown from 15 employees in 1984 to 200 at the present time. The company is looking to expand into larger quarters and anticipates creating an additional 100 jobs in exchange for its EDP allocation.

“I’m very confident that with a guarantee of lower-cost electricity from the Power Authority, we now have all the pieces lined up to make a decision to build our new factory in Central New York,” said Bob Poresky, project manager for ICM Controls.

Sysco Food Services distributes food service products from its facility in Warners. It is currently undergoing the third phase of an expansion that will increase its present work force of 500 to 600. Two earlier phases of its expansion included allocations of 400 kw and 500 kw. Tuesday’s actions bring Sysco’s total allocation to 1,300 kw.

“Lower-cost electricity from NYPA has been an essential component in the first two phases of our expansion process,” said Nick Romano, Director of Human Resources for Sysco Food Services of Syracuse, LLC. “We want to thank the New York Power Authority for their continued investment in our progress."  

The GLDC is a not for profit corporation that was established to redevelop the former Air Force basenow know as the Griffiss Business and Technology Parkand to promote economic development and job-retention to non-governmental tenants that have located or are planning to locate at the facility.

The 10-year allocation to Commodore Aviation is supported by the Oneida County Industrial Development Agency. The power is limited to private sector usage and is specifically barred from use by federal or local government agencies.

Allocations to ICM Controls and Sysco Food Services are each for a ten-year period and are supported by the Onondaga County Office of Economic Development and the Metropolitan Development Association of Syracuse and Central New York, Inc.

All three allocations were recommended for approval by the New York State Economic Development Power Allocation Board.