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State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli says local industrial development agencies need to put forth better statistics on job creation and economic growth – the current ones, he says, are questionable.

DiNapoli said in a news release today that job creation data from local IDA’s in New York State is consistently foggy.

"Taxpayers should know if the projects they're paying for are creating the jobs that were promised," he says. The release today is in response to what DiNapoli calls "serious questions" about the effectiveness of IDA's towards job and business development. In the year 2009, the 115 IDA's statewide handed out nearly $500-million dollars in tax breaks and incentives. Total projects amounted to 4,577. In return, the agencies claim to have created 204,000 jobs that year. But DiNapoli's report found no apparent connection between the tax exemptions and job growth.

The report did not include results for New York's 279 local economic development agencies.

"New York has a lot of local development agencies; developing a regional coordinated approach is very difficult," DiNapoli says.

DiNapoli believes there needs to be more supporting data shown for all the job figures produced by EDC's and IDA's. The current system, he says, impedes the ability to evaluate agency effectiveness.

DiNapoli does note that IDA-sponsored projects did employ nearly 750,000 workers in New York State in 2009.


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# Cathy DeJaneiro
Tuesday, July 12, 2011 4:53 PM
It is about time that the IDA began to audit by site visits and company payroll records to determine if the companies awarded huge tax breaks are living up to their agreement to add additional employees. That does not mean add them and get rid of others; that should mean a total increase in the number of people on the payroll. If those companies cannot prove that total increase, the monies they recieved in sales tax breaks, etc., should be invoiced to them and collected. If a company started out with 22 employees and guaranteed to add an additional 5-10 employees and their payroll records do not show that increase, get the money back!

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