New York takes aim at firms

Of the 29 businesses cited in Essex County, seven were certified before 2000 using different standards, Brassard said.

Brassard declined to identify the 29 Essex County businesses cited by the state. She did offer a breakdown by town. There are 10 in Moriah, three each in Ticonderoga and Chesterfield, two each in Willsboro, North Elba and Jay, and one each in Schroon, Westport, Crown Point, Elizabethtown, Lewis, Wilmington and St. Armand.

Three other Essex County businesses received notifications, but they are in the process of being de-certified.

Moriah, she pointed out, has the most because it was the site of the original zone and most of its businesses were certified prior to 2000 when regulations were different.

The notifications are a first for Empire Zone-certified businesses.

The notification represents the first time in the programs history that Empire Zone-certified companies will be officially informed of the states expectations that they make meaningful progress toward their goals in order to continue enjoying the program's benefits, said Errol Cockfield, Empire State Development Corp. spokesman. Our goal is to foster job growth and encourage companies to locate and expand in New York state. We also remain committed to vigorously exploring all available remedies where commitments havent been met.

Although letters have been sent to businesses not meeting the state requirements, Brassard said she does not expect any state action until after 2006 Empire Zone reports are analyzed.

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