Governor Andrew Cuomo had great news for the Binghamton, NY area on Sunday July 27, 2014. Jobs are coming thanks to START-UP New York. In an area with an official unemployment rate of 6.3% (higher than the State of New York, but equal to the national average) the promise of new jobs is a welcome bit of news. But the news was out on Sunday, which means it is suspect. What's wrong with the news?
One of the things that is learned quickly when following politics is that politicians try to announce really bad news on a Friday evening, when everyone is home from work and either sleeping or preparing for a weekend away from work. At the same time, when a politician has really weak news, something that might sound positive until the public reads a sentence or two of details, politicians tend to push that news out on Sundays.
Just enough attention to pump up the base that don't care about details; but not enough eyeballs by those less blinded by the cause to create a problem Monday morning. The latter relates to the news released by Governor Cuomo about jobs in Binghamton, NY.
Five companies, in fields as diverse as WiFi to energy storage, will be starting up in Binghamton University and creating jobs. Long-term jobs backed by a deal that they will pay $0 in New York State taxes for the next 10 years. That's not a typo, zero taxes. This will allow the $2.3 million total investment these companies bring to be converted fully into jobs. All 80 of them. Eighty jobs total. Governor Cuomo called it a "game-changing move" in regard to NY State's business climate.
There are some 112,800 people in the City of Binghamton, NY according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (unless you go by Census figures which says there are 46,400). There are 7,100 people that are counted as unemployed in Binghamton (by the BLS), though that does not count all unemployed. If they did, Binghamton's unemployment would be closer to 12.6% (based on national average U-6). But thanks to Gov. Cuomo, START-UP New York, and the loss of tax revenues to NY State for 10 years, the official unemployment rate of Binghamton will be reduced by 0.08% (again going by BLS data). The State of New York will have it's unemployment rate reduced 0.000... well that really doesn't matter does it?
The only thing that matters is that Binghamton will have more jobs, and more businesses. Just read the headline and skip the details because they aren't important. If it was, the news would not be out on Sunday.
But if you do read details, you may remember that Binghamton was selected as one of the 7 fastest shrinking cities in America. That according to the BLS, Binghamton has lost over 12,900 people and 9,700 jobs since May 2009.
Still, never fear because 80 new jobs are on the way. With that kind of turnaround you can understand why New York State is ranked 50 in business friendliness. Especially if you have an existing business in NY that gets none of these benefits.