CCIDA/CREDC had Banner Year in 2021

0
698
Mark Geise

$164 Million in New Investment, 314 New Jobs, 1,752 Retained Jobs Resulted from CCIDA Assistance

Article Contributed by
County of Chautauqua Industrial Development Agency (CCIDA)

Mark Geise, Deputy County Executive for Economic Development and Chief Executive Officer of the County of Chautauqua Industrial Development Agency (CCIDA), provided an overview of the CCIDA’s activities in 2021 at the CCIDA’s Board Meeting on January 25, 2022. After discussing the nature and breadth of projects approved by the Board in 2021, Geise discussed the economic development team’s top 10 accomplishments in 2021, as well as their top 10 goals for 2022.

Geise explained that during 2021, the CCIDA Board approved nearly 50 projects, which included the approval of loans for businesses, incentives for development projects, and the procurement of grants on behalf of businesses. Some of these projects included incentives for the $13 Million Love’s Travel Stop and Country Store in Ripley; the $18 Million Webb’s Chautauqua Resort in Mayville; the $41 Million Americold Freezer in Dunkirk; the $1.4 Million Hideaway Bay Resort in the Village of Silver Creek; the $11.6 Million redevelopment of the former Welch’s Headquarter Building in the Village of Westfield; the securitization of loan/grant funding for Jamestown Container Corporation and Jamestown Advanced Products in the amount of $4.6 Million; the sale of CCIDA-owned land for the purpose of developing a new YMCA facility in Jamestown; and several small (less than 5 MW) solar projects (to name just a few).

In 2021, the CCIDA also approved Cares Act Loan funding for 25 businesses throughout Chautauqua County in the amount of approximately $5 Million, which was part of the $10.5 Million U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) grant received by the CCIDA in 2020. All said, the CCIDA was involved in projects, loans, and grants that will result in $164 Million being invested in Chautauqua County, which are projected to create 314 new permanent jobs over three years, and will retain more than 1,750 jobs.

In addition, Geise discussed what he considers to be the top 10 accomplishments resulting from activities undertaken by the CCIDA/County Economic Development Team in 2021. In addition to several of the larger development projects approved by the CCIDA and previously-mentioned, Geise also discussed the $1.2 Million Ralph Wilson Jr. Foundation grant received by the Chautauqua County Partnership for Economic Growth; the over $4 Million funding received for economic development-related projects via the American Rescue Plan Act allocation made to the County; continued collaboration with the Cities of Jamestown and Dunkirk; the litany of activities the CCIDA undertook in relation to COVID-related business assistance, including the EDA Cares Act Loan Program, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Business Assistance Program, and CCIDA Working Capital Loan Program; and the analysis and continued negotiations with several property owners to expand the CCIDA’s shovel-ready site offerings.

In terms of aspirations for 2022, Geise discussed his desire to acquire a large parcel or parcels for expansion of the shovel-ready sites; re-activating several key vacant buildings, including the Furniture Mart Building, the White Inn, Silver Creek School, and the large formerly ConAgra-owned Building in Dunkirk; continue to work with the City of Dunkirk, State, and NRG in getting the NRG facility back into productive use; and develop a marketing and branding strategy for the county to help address population decline and supply businesses with much-needed labor (to name a few).

“This has been an epic year,” explained Geise. “Through all of the diversity posed by the pandemic, the CCIDA team was able to knock it out of the park. This was due to the unwavering dedication of an extremely capable staff, board, and community volunteer team making up our Loan Transaction Committee, and so many others. We will continue to be aggressive and intentional as we continue to advance the ball in terms of economic development, as well as the creation and retention of jobs.”

Mike Metzger, Chairman of the CCIDA Board of Directors, echoed Mr. Geise’s sentiments when he said, “Congratulations to the entire economic development team for all of your dedication and hard work. We have a great relationship with the business community, the municipalities, and the County, and this has proven to be true in the substantial impact that we are making throughout the County. A special thanks to the volunteer CCIDA Board and Loan Committee, as well as the staff and every entity involved with economic development in Chautauqua County for making 2021 a great year.”

Chautauqua County Executive PJ Wendel said, “I am thrilled with the work being undertaken by the CCIDA and the extended economic development team, which includes the Partnership for Economic Growth and the County Planning Department. I commend Mark Geise and the CCIDA team for their laser focus on Chautauqua County’s upward trajectory despite the pandemic. As I’ve stated many times, our comeback will be greater than our setback, and the CCIDA’s 2021 tally of accomplishments speaks to the significant steps forward we continue to make for our local economy year after year.”

The CCIDA/CREDC 2021 Year-end Report & 2022 Work Plan can be found on the CCIDA website: www.ccida.com.

About CCIDA

The CCIDA is an economic development organization authorized and empowered by the State of New York to make Chautauqua County a better place to work, live, and visit. It facilitates development by attracting new businesses, while promoting the retention and expansion of existing businesses. Assistance in the form of incentives – tax abatements, low interest loans, and bond financing – enhances the opportunities for job creation and retention by our businesses. For more information visit www.ccida.com.