Senator Schumer announces $17 mil unlocked

BUFFAO, N.Y. - Senator Schumer announced Tuesday that he helped unlock nearly $17 million in federal funding that will go toward spurring economic development projects in Erie County. 

Schumer said he facilitated a compromise between the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the U.S. Department of Commerce's Economic Development Administration (EDA) to end a decade long bureaucratic tug-of-war that had this $17 million frozen. 

Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz was also in attendance at the announcement. 

Poloncarz said that $3 million will go toward economic development for a number of Erie County projects. 

Those projects include $500,000 for the remediation of the former Bethlehem Steel Site, $325,000 for the Kennedy Avenue Greenway Improvements in the Town of Evans, $872,000 for Community Revitalization Projects, $400,000 for a Lead Paint Remediation Program  and $470,000 for a Local Municipal Plan Assistance Program. 

Poloncarz said the other $14 million will be administered through the revolving loan funds that exist through the Erie County Industrial Development Agency. That money will be used for projected throughout Western New York. 

An example of that is the former Gates Circle site, where Tuesday's announcement took place. The Gates Circle project is one of the few that benefited from the Revolving Loan Fund during the bureaucratic tug-of-war. 

Schumer said other projects will now have access to the funding like Gates Circle did. 

The senator said it is critical that the federal government provide money that kick-start economic development. 

He added that this $17 million was unfrozen in the just the last couple of weeks. 


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