Today, the Greater Rochester/Finger Lakes Region of New York was designated as one of the first 12 Manufacturing Communities by The U.S. Department of Commerce as part of its Investing in Manufacturing Communities Partnership (IMCP) initiative. The U.S. Commerce Department-led program is designed to accelerate the resurgence of manufacturing in communities nationwide by supporting the development of long-term economic development strategies that help communities attract and expand private investment in the manufacturing sector and increase international trade and exports.
“The 12 Manufacturing Communities announced today represent a diverse group of communities with the most comprehensive economic development plans to attract business investment that will increase their competitiveness,” said U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker. “IMCP is a critical part of our ‘Open for Business Agenda’ to strengthen the American manufacturing sector and attract more investment to the United States. Innovative programs like IMCP encourage American communities to work together to craft strong, clear, strategic plans to attract manufacturing investment and jobs to transform themselves into globally competitive commercial hubs.”
Selected based on the strength of its economic development plan, the New York Finger Lakes region, led by the City of Rochester was selected out of more than 70 applicants based on the strength of their economic development plan,the potential community impact, and the depth of their partnerships across the public and private sectors to carry the plan out.
As one of the 12 designated Manufacturing Communities, the area will receive coordinated support for their strategies from eleven federal agencies with $1.3 billion available in federal economic development assistance.
These communities will also receive a dedicated federal liaison at each agency that will help them navigate available federal resources. They will also be recognized on a government website, accessible to prospective private foreign and domestic investors, looking for information on communities’ competitive attributes.
In order to earn the designation, communities had to demonstrate the significance of manufacturing already present in their region and develop strategies to make investments in six areas: 1) workforce and training, 2) advanced research, 3) infrastructure and site development, 4) supply chain support, 5) trade and international investment, 6) operational improvement and capital access.
In September 2013, the U.S. Commerce Department’s Economic Development Administration and other agencies awarded $7 million in IMCP grants to 44 communities to support the development of long-term economic development strategies to help them attract and expand private investment in the manufacturing sector and increase international trade and exports. The Obama Administration officially launched the national IMCP competition in December 2013. Later this year, the Administration plans to launch a second IMCP competition to designate additional communities, as well as convene the 70 communities that applied for designation to share best practices in economic development planning.