ALBANY – State lawmakers extended two energy programs that industrial and political officials say keep upstate manufacturing competitive with the rest of the country despite historically high operating and business costs.
The state Assembly voted Thursday to place one-year extensions on Economic Development Power and Power for Jobs, which cut costs for companies – usually technology-based – that consume considerable amounts of electricity in a state where energy prices are among the country’s highest.
Locally, Gary Cummings, director of operations at Unison Industries in Norwich, said the Economic Development Power program saves his building roughly $200,000 annually, a significant amount considering the internal and external competition that exists in global markets.
“If the price of power goes up, I have to cut costs somewhere else,” said Cummings. “There are a number of ways to cut costs, but none of them are pleasant.”