$7.9M payment ends Pike work stoppage

ALBANY - A Rochester-based construction company has resumed work on a $25 million wafer-manufacturing facility after the state processed a $7.9 million grant late last month.

The Pike Company stopped work on the facility on SUNY Polytechnic Institute's Albany campus in late July, claiming it had been owed millions of dollars for work completed since February.

The work stoppage led to finger pointing among state entities, with a SUNY Poly-aligned non-profit awaiting payment from the state Dormitory Authority, which said it needed more documentation from Pike.

On Tuesday, Dormitory Authority spokesman Freeman Klopott confirmed the authority processed a $7.9 million payment to Fuller Road Management Corp. -- SUNY Poly's real-estate branch -- on Aug. 30.

David Doyle, a spokesman for SUNY Poly, said the payment has been transferred to Pike and workers are back on the job.

The Pike Company couldn't immediately be reached for comment Tuesday.

The under-construction facility is slated to house a General Electric manufacturing line, which will produce silicon carbide wafers. It follows a model used often by SUNY Poly, in which non-profits controlled by the college own the facility but allow private companies to use it.

The payment delay mirrored a similar situation in Buffalo earlier this year, which led to short-term layoffs at the RiverBend complex, where a major SolarCity plant is under construction. Soon after, the state processed $485 million for the project.

Both delays came as several major state-backed construction projects remain under investigation by U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office has acknowledged that Bharara’s office is examining potential bid-rigging in major economic-development projects, including those overseen by SUNY Poly-aligned nonprofits.


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