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Bob Antonacci II


New York State Senate, District 50 (2019 - Present)

Comptroller, Onondaga County, New York (2008 - Present)

Quick Facts
Personal Details

Bob Antonacci (Republican) is a member of the New York State Senate, representing District 50. Antonacci was elected to the office on November 6, 2018.

Antonacci was a Republican candidate for New York Comptroller in the 2014 elections. Bob Antonacci lost the general election on November 4, 2014.

Antonacci currently serves as Onondaga County Comptroller.


  • JD, Law, Syracuse University Law School, 1990-1993
  • BS, Accounting, Le Moyne College, 1984-1987

Professional Experience

  • JD, Law, Syracuse University Law School, 1990-1993
  • BS, Accounting, Le Moyne College, 1984-1987
  • Former Accountant, Ernst & Young

Political Experience

  • JD, Law, Syracuse University Law School, 1990-1993
  • BS, Accounting, Le Moyne College, 1984-1987
  • Former Accountant, Ernst & Young
  • Senator, New York State Senate, District 50, 2019
  • Candidate, New York State Senate, District 50, 2018
  • Comptroller, Onondaga County, New York, 2008-2018
  • Candidate, New York State Comptroller, 2014

Former Committees/Caucuses

Former Ranking Member, Banks Committee, New York State Senate

Former Ranking Member, Budget and Revenues Committee, New York State Senate

Former Member, Finance Committee, New York State Senate

Former Member, Health Committee, New York State Senate

Former Member, Internet and Technology Committee, New York State Senate



Mannion also ran in the 2018 election as a Conservative Party, Independence Party, and Upstate Jobs Party candidate.

General election
General election for New York State Senate District 50

Bob Antonacci (R) defeated John Mannion (D) in the general election for New York State Senate District 50 on November 6, 2018.


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Bob Antonacci (R)

John Mannion (D)
Other/Write-in votes

Total votes: 122,403
(100% precincts reporting)
Democratic primary election
Democratic primary for New York State Senate District 50

John Mannion advanced from the Democratic primary for New York State Senate District 50 on September 13, 2018.


John Mannion (D)

Republican primary election
Republican primary for New York State Senate District 50

Bob Antonacci advanced from the Republican primary for New York State Senate District 50 on September 13, 2018.


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Bob Antonacci (R)


Antonacci ran for election to the office of New York Comptroller. Antonacci was unopposed for the Republican nomination in the primary. The general election took place on November 4, 2014.


General election
New York Controller, 2014
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngThomas DiNapoli Incumbent 60.2% 2,233,057
Republican Bob Antonacci 36.5% 1,354,643
Green Theresa Portelli 2.6% 97,906
Libertarian John Clifton 0.7% 26,583
Total Votes 3,712,189
Election results via New York State Board of Elections

Governor Cuomo Announces Projects Funded Through Empire State Poverty Reduction Initiative Launching in Syracuse

Oct. 3, 2019

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced 10 organizations that will receive more than $1.7 million through the Empire State Poverty Reduction Initiative to undertake community-based projects in the City of Syracuse. These projects are a direct result of the Governor's $25 million initiative to help 16 communities develop locally-driven strategies to reduce poverty and increase economic opportunity for all New Yorkers. "This initiative helps communities develop a pathway to guide low-income New Yorkers toward economic independence," Governor Cuomo said. "With this funding, Syracuse will join other regions in developing models that are effective at addressing poverty in some of the hardest hit areas of the state. I commend these efforts and look forward to seeing the programs deliver results." "We are focused on lifting New Yorkers out of poverty and improving quality of life in every community across the state," Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul said. "With funding from the Empire State Poverty Reduction Initiative, the United Way of Central New York will be able to invest in proven strategies to tackle poverty with job training programs, services for at-risk youth, and assistance with transportation and literacy. Syracuse residents will have a brighter future thanks to this strategic investment." Shortly after the Governor announced the Empire State Poverty Reduction Initiative in 2016, Albany, Binghamton, the Bronx, Buffalo, Elmira, Hempstead, Jamestown, Newburgh, Niagara Falls, Oneonta, Oswego, Troy, Syracuse, Utica and Watertown joined Rochester by developing task forces to oversee local efforts and administer state funding. These task forces worked to identify high-need areas and develop recommendations for investments and other initiatives to reduce the number of individuals living in poverty. Now, the task forces are implementing the poverty reduction plans developed in the first phase to utilize the funding. The United Way of Central New York Inc. is administering the funding in Syracuse on behalf of Greater Syracuse HOPE, due to its capacity to collaborate with a wide variety of entities on common goals and themes. The city-based nonprofit is contracting with community-based organizations to help low-income residents address education, employment, housing and health concerns that were previously identified by the taskforce. These organizations include: -Coordinated Care Services, $325,000 - To fund a dropout prevention and peer mentorship program employing 11 family advocates that will provide support services to 150 at-risk middle school students and their families.-Street Addiction Institute, $205,000 - To create an after-school component for the 150 identified students participating in Coordinated Care Services' peer mentorship program that will address the challenges they face from neighborhood trauma. The organization will provide services that promote school attendance, academic performance, and parent supports through intensive non-traditional academic and behavioral interventions.-PEACE Inc., $75,000 - To incorporate 100 middle school students in a public awareness campaign that will help them improve job readiness skills, increase civic engagement and bolster financial literacy. The project also aims to help participants gain a greater sense of connection to the community.-Home HeadQuarters, Inc., $355,000 - To provide financial counseling to help low-income individuals create viable options for additional streams of revenue and build up existing assets. As part of the project, the company will subcontract with a local credit union to provide a financial counselor and Step-Up loans to assist individuals who participate in workforce training.-Syracuse Northeast Community Center, $100,000 - To help people who are ineligible to participate or have dropped out of traditional job training programs re-enter the workforce through volunteer opportunities with nonprofits that are within walking distance. Also, to provide financial counseling with a focus on budgeting and credit repair. Syracuse Northeast Community Center will partner with Northeast Hawley Development Association, Inc., and the ARISE Child & Family Service.-Good Life Youth Foundation, $100,000 - To teach financial literacy and healthy money management so families can build assets and achieve financial stability. Each enrolled family will receive a small line of credit at the beginning of the seven-month pilot that will be released to them once they complete the financial literacy module to either save or cover critical life expenses.-SUNY Educational Opportunity Center, $150,000 - To support adding two new community engagement specialists to provide individuals with a broad array of services, including aptitude and skill assessments, career planning, and job placement assistance.-Syracuse Model Neighborhood Facility, $183,000 - To establish Community Connectors, people of influence within their respective neighborhoods who can guide other residents to resources that can help them navigate their way out of poverty. Community Connectors will engage their neighborhoods through one-on-one networking and public outreach to provide a more in-depth understanding of social assets, needs and opportunities.-Jubilee Homes of Syracuse, $139,000 - To purchase two vans to be used for a ride service for seniors, individuals with disabilities, and others who require employment-related transportation services including rides to work, grocery stores, pharmacies to pick up medication, and to scheduled primary health care appointments.-The Volunteer Lawyers Project of Onondaga County, $84,000 - To staff a full-time attorney to assist program participants with a variety of legal assistance, including creating small businesses, and removing barriers to employment caused by criminal records. The attorney will create drop-in legal clinics and recruit other volunteer lawyers or law students to assist in counseling clients. New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance Commissioner Mike Hein said, "These projects represent a collective locally generated vision to assist low-income residents and address the root causes of poverty. Under the leadership of Governor Cuomo, this initiative is helping communities rethink the way they approach the issues commonly associated with poverty and develop models that are ultimately more effective." New York State Secretary of State Rossana Rosado said, "Governor Cuomo recognizes that for communities to thrive, we must deliver resources to help less fortunate residents. The ESPRI gives a helping hand to those suffering at the hands of poverty, which in turn strengthens community bonds, gives residents a sense of pride, and fosters growth both in and beyond each locality. These are great programs that will help deliver an equal economic playing field so that we can all prosper." Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh said, "While the recent data from the 2018 U.S. Census Bureau American Community Survey shows the poverty rate in Syracuse has declined from 32.4% to 30.5%, we still have a great deal of work to do. The new funding from the Empire State Poverty Reduction Initiative will help organizations throughout our city do the work to combat poverty, keeping Syracuse on an upward trajectory." Senator Robert E. Antonacci II said, "The focus to fund these initiatives will have a tremendous impact throughout the Syracuse area in reducing poverty. These community organizations play a vital role in assisting those who have a desire to create a better life for themselves and their families. These programs seek to develop skills and create economic opportunities for those who need additional assistance." Assembly Member Pamela J. Hunter said, "Poverty in my assembly district is some of the most severe in the country. With this initiative in place, I am hopeful that we will begin to turn a corner in Syracuse that will allow more families to live financially stable and independent lives. Throughout my time as a representative, I have worked with many of the organizations that will be coordinating on this initiative and I am confident that with their partnerships we will get amazing results for our communities." Assembly Member William Magnarelli said, "Central New York is committed to strengthening its community and reducing the issues that lead to widespread poverty. The Governor's Empire State Poverty Reduction funding will help the local non-profits successful at taking on these challenges enhance their services and reach a larger segment of the population in need." Senator Rachel May said, "Syracuse is ranked as one of the nation's poorest cities. It is also home to many people who love this community and are fighting to change it for the better, by combating poverty, growing jobs, and building community. We are starting to see encouraging changes, and we must continue to support that momentum. There are many groups working directly on the ground with their neighbors, without whom the city's surge would not happen. It is wonderful that Governor Cuomo has allocated more than $1.7 million to these organizations and I look forward to our continued partnership in combating poverty in Syracuse and across the 53rd Senate District." State Interagency Coordinator of Non-profit Organizations Fran Barrett said, "ESPRI continues Governor Cuomo's successful efforts to tackle the root causes of poverty and income inequality. Through ESPRI, Governor Cuomo has empowered low-income New Yorkers to design strategies for removing the barriers they face to achieving economic and social mobility. This is an exciting moment as the citizens of Syracuse are working together for tangible results. The unique system-changing projects launched today are a great example of the work being done across the state in all 16 ESPRI localities. We applaud the work of Syracuse's local leadership and look forward to seeing the impact this effort will have on the lives of Syracuse families." Greater Syracuse HOPE Executive Director Ocesa B. Keaton said, "We are excited about the opportunities afforded to us by OTDA and the Governor's Office. ESPRI funding has given us an opportunity to ground our agencies and government partners in collaborative and innovative strategies to address concentrated poverty. The strategies funded are a reflection of the needs expressed by Syracuse residents who are currently experiencing or have experienced poverty. Our partnerships are applying financial planning, social entrepreneurship, and trauma response wrap-around services to create pathways of opportunities for residents who are most in need." Syracuse Common Council President and Syracuse HOPE Co-chairwoman Helen Hudson said, "I would like to thank Governor Cuomo for this wonderful opportunity to address the most critical needs in our community and for understanding that we cannot curtail poverty without a comprehensive plan. The ESPRI funding gives us the resources we need collaborate with agencies throughout the Syracuse area to give people living in poverty an opportunity to help their families and improve their lives." United Way of Central New York President Nancy Kern Eaton said, "The projects that are being implemented thanks to Governor Cuomo's Empire State Poverty Reduction Initiative are innovative new ways of addressing issues that were identified by people in our community as causes of factors in poverty. Working with children and their families, addressing trauma, support in workforce development and placement, transportation to work, helping people on the road to financial stability, and resolving legal issues all offer people the chance to move beyond economic instability and onto a pathway toward success. People in Syracuse have come together to offer real solutions and we are proud to partner in these efforts." The Governor's Nonprofit Coordination Unit, along with the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance, New York State Homes and Community Renewal, and the New York State Grants and Reform Team conducted listening sessions across the state in 2017 to discuss updates with the Governor's program, answer questions, and connect local government with non-profit providers and business groups. The remaining communities are in various stages of developing and enacting their local recommendations and are expected to announce their individual poverty reduction plans in the coming months.

Governor Cuomo Kicks Off 172nd Great New York State Fair

Aug. 21, 2019

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today kicked off the 172nd Great New York State Fair in Syracuse. At the ribbon cutting, the Governor announced a new promotion to further drive attendance at the Fair - anyone with a valid Amtrak ticket dated between August 21 and September 2 will receive a free admission to the Fair by presenting the ticket or receipt at any Fair box office. The Governor and cabinet officials took the train from Albany to the Fair's special train stop to highlight the ease and environmentally-friendly way of attending the Fair by train. Amtrak operates regular eastbound and westbound trains that use the special stop at the Fair. Schedules can be found here. The Governor also announced three new projects aimed at continuing the forward momentum of the revitalization of the Fairgrounds including: GreenFair, an aggressive project to make the State Fair energy self-sufficient; a new, larger Gate 10 to be completed in time for next year's Fair; and the start of Phase 2 of the State Fair access improvement project to make the Fair more accessible for vehicles and pedestrians. "This is a new and different fair than ever before which is why we are seeing record attendance and it's the third most attended fair in the United States," Governor Cuomo said. "Even if you've been to the fair in the past, this is a different experience after the investments we have made and it is a great economic generator for the entire region. It's also a fair we can be proud of - a phenomenal demonstration of who we are and what we have to offer." "The New York State Fair continues to attract a record number of people with fun activities, events, and programs for the whole family," said Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul, who visited the Fair today. "The Fair highlights some of the best local products and talent that New York has to offer, and we are continuing to invest in and grow the Fair every year. The Great New York State Fair is helping to drive tourism in Central New York and boost the economy of the region and the entire state." To promote attendance to the fair, two Amtrak cars on Empire Service line 63 were wrapped with specially-designed New York State Fair graphics and messaging. All Empire line trains will serve Taste NY products during the fair, with Taste NY promotional materials distributed through seatback flyers, posters and table tents. This will complement I LOVE NY's advertising and digital campaigns that encourage visitors to experience the fair as part of their next New York State vacation. "GreenFair" Project Aims at Energy Self-Sufficiency The Fair will begin an aggressive project, called GreenFair, to become energy self-sufficient, eliminate waste and recycle every available item to create the greenest fair in America. The plan will involve the installation of solar panels and the construction of wind turbines -- upon completion of a detailed plan to determine exact locations -- to capture renewable energy and reduce, eventually to zero, the need for energy from fossil fuels by 2023. The Fair will also reduce the use of disposable plastic items and begin a pilot program to recycle food waste. Additionally, a new pavilion for environmental education will be built. The project directly supports Governor Cuomo's Green New Deal, a clean energy and jobs agenda that puts New York State on a path to a carbon neutral economy and supports the State's goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030. The Fairgrounds has already taken significant steps to reduce energy use. The New York Power Authority completed in December 2018 an $866,000 project to replace lights in six of the Fairgrounds' major buildings with energy-efficient LED lighting, lowering energy costs by an estimated $23,000 per year. The Fair will significantly reduce the use of disposable plastics. The Fair and other state agencies will no longer give away single use plastic tote bags. Tens of thousands of reusable bags are being given away every day of the Fair, in cooperation with other state agencies that exhibit at the Fair. Fair vendors have been notified that beginning next year, single-use film plastic bags will not be permitted. In addition, vendors will be required to provide food and beverages in recyclable or compostable containers. This includes ending the use of plastic straws. A major effort to get fairgoers to recycle returnable bottles, partnered with the Carol M. Baldwin Breast Cancer Research Fund of CNY, increased the number of bottles diverted from landfills. The Fair will also create a waste sorting facility to divert recyclable or compostable items out of the trash and set up a pilot food waste recycling program. The Fair will create an environmental stewardship pavilion on the western end of the Fairgrounds. The new pavilion, which will be energy independent from day one, will educate fairgoers on ways they can reduce their energy footprint, update the progress of the GreenFair project, and highlight the state's energy and climate initiatives. This year's fairgoers, who are interested in driving green and clean, can learn about the many benefits of driving zero-emissions vehicles and check out four electric vehicle models by visiting the EVolveNY booth near Chevy Court in front of the Arts & Music Center. Two ultra-fast 150 kW electric vehicle chargers will be on display, and information about the Drive Clean consumer rebate and New York's statewide EV charging network will be available. Those who already drive clean can charge their vehicle at Gate Four of the Fairgrounds. Fairgoers will be able to identify elements of the GreenFair plan through a green version of the Fair's iconic logo. Gate 10 Renovation and Ongoing Projects With the relocation for safety reasons of the Centro Park-N-Ride bus depot to the western end of the Fairgrounds, the lightly-used Gate 10 becomes a second main entrance to the Fairgrounds. A $1.5 million project to replace the existing gate building will begin after the Fair and be complete in time for the 2020 Fair. The new Gate 10, when complete, will be a larger gate structure -- aesthetically similar to the Expo Center -- including new fencing, paving, streetscaping, lighting and a large LED billboard. The new gate will be the first of many improvements for the western end of the grounds. Gates 3 and 4 along State Fair Boulevard were torn down earlier this year and replaced with more flexible facilities for ticketing and security. Also in 2020, a new Sheep Barn will be built to replace the barn that was torn down earlier this year in the wake of high wind events that severely damaged the prior barn. The Wool Center, a popular Fair exhibit focusing on demonstrations using wool, will also relocate to the new Sheep Barn. Sheep are being exhibited in a tent this year. Part of the space where the Sheep barn once stood has become Goat Park, featuring a fenced-in area where young goats can play and be seen by fairgoers, enhancing the Fair's efforts to bring people closer to agriculture. Other ongoing and planned facilities improvements for the next year include continuing renovations of the Daniella's Catering and Events Steakhouse, formerly the Empire Room; acoustics improvements in the Exposition Center; a $1.1 million project to begin redeveloping agricultural buildings on the western of the grounds; improvements to the Fair's classic Center of Progress, Horticulture and other buildings; as well as other infrastructure projects. Orange Lot Improvements, Phase Two Major construction on the $11.18 million New York State Fair Orange Lot Phase 2 project will begin after the conclusion of the 2019 Great New York State Fair. Preparatory work has already begun. As part of the project, the State Department of Transportation will construct a new I-690 eastbound on-ramp bridge, ensuring that a temporary traffic signal on the highway will not be required during the State Fair after 2019. The new I-690 eastbound on-ramp bridge will also accommodate pedestrians with a 10-foot pedestrian walkway that will help ease pedestrian traffic to and from the Orange lot. Construction will be complete in time for the 2020 State Fair. Construction began on the $27 million first phase of the State Fair's 65-acre Orange Lot in October 2017, with parts of the lot open in time for last summer's concert season at the St. Joseph's Health Amphitheater at Lakeview. The Department of Transportation completed Phase 1 of Orange Lot in time for the 2018 Great New York State Fair. More than 7,000 paved parking spaces are now available in the Orange lot, up from the 4,000 to 5,000 that were available on the previous dirt surface. A new exit ramp to Interstate 690 west from the western end of the Orange Lot now allows fairgoers direct access to I-690 from the State Fair and Onondaga County amphitheater. Prior to the opening of this ramp, vehicles could only exit the Orange Lot from the Exit 7 area of I-690 during events scheduled outside of the Fair. Phase 2 of the State Fair Access improvement project will take Phase 1 a step further. In addition to the new eastbound ramp, the project will finally address the temporary traffic signal that is installed on I-690 for the State Fair every year. Access to the interstate is requested by NYSDOT and subject to approval by FHWA on a yearly basis. Once the project is completed in 2020, there will be no further need for a traffic signal on I-690 during the Great New York State Fair. 2019 Fair Highlights The 2019 Fair will feature a host of new events and activities, part of the annual effort to refresh the Fair and embrace new ideas. Major new promotional events include Christmas In August, featuring an all-day visit from Santa Claus and live reindeer, a display of antique sleighs, and a fun afternoon skills competition for fairgoers in Santa suits. The day ends with the screening of the movie "Elf" in the Expo Center. The new Comic Con Day at the Fair celebrates popular culture with $1 admission for people who come in full costumes, training in the use of the kind of laser swords seen in movies such as "Star Wars," appearances from Bumblebee from the Transformers movies and the Hulkbuster from Marvel movies and comics. A special Marvel Spider-Man comic with a custom front cover showing the webslinging superhero soaring over a crowd in front of the Expo Center, will be on sale during the event. The Fair's new Movie Nights at the Expo features seven evenings of family-friendly movies, such as "Avengers: Endgame." Standup Paddleboard Yoga, taking place on the weekends at the Fair, offers a fun learning challenge for experienced yoga practitioners. A turf field installed in the Expo Center will host youth and adult soccer, kickball, bocce, lacrosse, field hockey and flag football tournaments and, when no tournaments are scheduled, fairgoers will be able to play large-sized lawn games such as Connect Four, yard pond, hula hoops and more. The new Biker Appreciation Day offers free motorcycle parking and $1 admission for those with a valid motorcycle license. The Fair continues to offer more free and low-cost attendance days and promotions than any major fair in the nation. Diversity will continue to be celebrated at the Fair. The Fair's annual Pride Day celebration features a keynote address from Martin Davis, a participant in the Stonewall Riots that marked the beginning of a long fight to end laws discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation. The Fair was the first state fair in the nation to hold an official Pride Day. Women's Day at the Fair this year will celebrate 100 years of women's suffrage. Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul will keynote the annual luncheon and the day will feature $1 admission for all women. Latino Village Weekend, a celebration of Latino music, food and culture, will expand to four days, August 30 to September 2, and move to a new home near the Youth Building. The music festival FunkFest will expand to two days at the New York Experience Stage. The new first day is called WorldBeat and will offer music from around the world, while the traditional FunkFest day focuses on classic soul, funk and R&B, highlighted by appearances from 70s and 80s hitmaking bands Raydio featuring Arnell Carmichael, and Lakeside featuring Capt. Mark Wood. The Fair's main stage, Chevy Court, will host its first-ever Spanish-language performer, the Puerto Rican singer-songwriter Farruko. Chevy Court and the Experience Stage make up the Chevrolet Music Festival, one of the best free music festivals at any fair in the nation. Performers scheduled for free shows on those stages include Bad Company, Lindsey Stirling, Midland, the Mavericks, Rick Springfield, Gavin DeGraw, Ice Cube and more. Full schedules can be found here. Empire State Development President, CEO and Commissioner Howard Zemsky said, "The Great New York State Fair showcases the best of our state, and the record numbers of visitors who attend each summer also support local jobs and businesses, which are vital to sustaining the region's year-round economic growth." New York State Executive Director of Tourism Ross D. Levi said, "A Great New York State Fair getaway is a fun grand finale to any family's summer, with spectacular rides, animals, live performances, food and craft beverages. A trip to the region is sure to create memories that will last a lifetime." Fair Director Troy Waffner said, "We are proud to kick off the 2019 Great New York State Fair and celebrate, for the 172nd year, all of the great things about New York--its innovation, its culture, its diversity and so much more. We continue to grow and get better and better every year, thanks to the Governor's historic investment in the grounds. We look forward to another banner year with amazing concerts, food, entertainment and several new special events for our fairgoers that have definitely been worth waiting for!" Department of Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball said, "As the nation's first Fair, the Great New York State Fair has held true to its tradition of promoting agriculture and has grown with so much great entertainment, rides, music and food that continues to be the hallmark of this event that keeps families coming back year after year. With the Governor's vision for a reenergized Fair, we have maintained those traditions but have been able to take tremendous steps forward, with expanded programming and continued investment in infrastructure that make our Fair shine. We encourage everyone to come spend time at the Fair and see the very best of New York on display." Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos said, "The Great New York State Fair is a celebration of everything our state has to offer, and that includes everything from Free Family Fishing on August 22 and 24, to the Governor's efforts to protect our environment and our communities from the threat of climate change. Plans to green the Fair by increasing recycling and making the Fair energy efficient perfectly complement New York's nation-leading goals to reduce climate pollution and tap into renewable energy sources." Alicia Barton, President and CEO, NYSERDA said, "The Great New York State Fair is a time-honored tradition that attracts thousands of families from near and far to Central New York each year and Governor Cuomo's 'GreenFair' plan is an opportunity for those attending the Fair to see the state's nation-leading sustainability efforts in action. Transitioning the State Fair to renewable energy sources like solar and wind is the latest example, under the Governor's leadership, of projects going green that will further protect our environment and reduce emissions improving the air quality of communities across the state." Senator Robert E. Antonacci said, "Our local farms and recreational offerings get a tremendous boost from the annual State Fair. I thank the Governor for enhancing the State Fair with new improvements and giving these businesses more opportunity to promote their unique products. This regional economic engine shows the rest of the world what great experiences they can find in New York State not only during the Fair but throughout the year." Assembly Member William B. Magnarelli said, "The State Fair is our region's biggest summer event, and with Governor Cuomo's support, it has become one of the largest and most successful in the country. Every summer the Fair showcases Central New York's best foods and features. With new improvements in the works to make the Fair a more enjoyable and accessible festivity, the region can welcome even more fairgoers who will support our local businesses." In addition to new offerings, fairgoer favorites will continue to be available. Visitors can purchase their sporting licenses at the Department of Environmental Conservation's aquarium building and see the freshwater fish of New York. Free fishing clinics will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on August 22 and 24 at the New York Experience Area pond area. Entry to the Fair on these two days is just $1 with a valid New York State sporting license. More details can be found here. 1.27 million people attended the Great New York State Fair in 2019, setting new records for attendance and raising the Fair to third among all state fairs in the nation as measured by industry publication Carnival Warehouse. Since the start of renovations efforts in 2015, Fair attendance is up 41 percent. Improvements to the fairgrounds, including the Expo Center, have also boosted the Fair's year-round facilities rental business, with events other than the Fair attracting an estimated 1 million people in 2018 and the record is on pace to be broken in 2019. Info on the Great New York State Fair is available at, and vacation planning information for the greater Syracuse area is available at

Governor Cuomo Announces Transformational Projects for Auburn as Part of $10 Million Downtown Revitalization Initiative Award

Jul. 30, 2019

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced 13 transformational projects for downtown Auburn as part of the $10 million Downtown Revitalization Initiative award. The strategic investments in downtown Auburn will build on the interconnected relationships between its many natural, multicultural, educational, and historic assets, serving as a meeting place for civic engagement, and sustaining its unparalleled quality of life supported by a strong local economy, diversity, and restored vibrancy for all in the Auburn Business Improvement District and West End Arts District. The investments are part of the Governor's ongoing efforts to revitalize the upstate economy and create more opportunities for Central New York. "Auburn has a unique opportunity to reclaim its rich cultural and artistic heritage through the Downtown Revitalization Initiative," Governor Cuomo said. "By restoring its historic buildings as well as creating modern facilities that will deliver essential public services, this community is poised to flourish for generations to come." "Auburn is rich in history with the advancement of human rights movements and as the home of Harriet Tubman and William Seward," said Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul, who made today's announcement. "Building on our investments in the city, including the Equal Rights Heritage Center, these Downtown Revitalization Initiative projects will transform Auburn's historic city center and downtown, drawing visitors and enhancing quality of life for residents. We are focused on revitalizing Central New York with strategic investments to attract businesses and strengthen the economy for generations to come." Auburn was named a DRI Round 3 winner in July. Auburn serves as the Cayuga County seat and is the second largest city in Central New York. Auburn has a fascinating history in hydroelectric power and agricultural mechanization as well as advancement of human rights movements including abolitionism, women's rights, prison reform and temperance. As "History's Hometown" Auburn has become a primary travel destination and was also named a best small city to raise a family. While recent public and private investment, local planning efforts, and capital infrastructure projects have begun to catalyze downtown's redevelopment, there is still work to be done along the City's riverfront, transportation corridors, and arts district that comprise the DRI investment area and provide the greatest potential for vacant property revitalization and corridor enhancement. The City is seeking to keep the momentum of recent development going by mending a historic downtown impacted by urban renewal and revitalizing vacant brownfield and riverfront properties. To leverage DRI funds, City leadership has embraced a #ThisPlaceMatters campaign to achieve $40 million in public-private funds to invest in downtown. The downtown area boasts several existing assets, as well as significant momentum, building towards this vision. The area includes the business district, arts district, and portions of the Auburn Sparks Brownfield Opportunity Area (BOA) and is central to city and county government activities. It is home to numerous cultural, historical, and recreational resources, including the Seward House Museum, the Cayuga Museum of History and Art, the Case Research Lab, the Schweinfurth Art Center, the Schines Theater, the NYS Equal Rights Heritage Center, the Willard Memorial Chapel, and the Owasco River Greenway Trail. The specific projects to be funded through the DRI include: Create a Unified Arts Campus as a Gateway to Downtown: Implement architectural and site improvements to unify the campuses of the Schweinfurth Art Center and Cayuga Museum of History and Arts as a gateway to the future Auburn Arts and Entertainment District, creating a cultural destination and building community through expanded programming and access to open space in an underserved area. Proposed improvements include a continuous outdoor walkway, parking lot and driveway upgrades, new plazas, new accessible entryways to both museums, and amenities such as lighting, signage, interpretive panels, bike racks, benches, and a play sculpture. Transform an Underutilized Strip Mall into a Public Safety Building: Redevelop a 1970s strip mall on Seminary Street as a new shared services public safety building to create office space for a City and County Emergency Operations Center and Emergency Management Office, as well as facilities to replace the deteriorating City of Auburn Fire Department facility currently located in a dam inundation zone. This project will enable efficient emergency delivery services for the people of Auburn and catalyze revitalization in this portion of the DRI. Transform a Vacant Lot into a Prominent Public Plaza: Redevelop a centrally-located vacant site into a public plaza for events, festivals, and socializing to fill a need for open spaces in downtown Auburn, round out the vision for the State Street Creative Corridor, and draw people to adjacent retail stores and restaurants. DRI will fund site preparation, water lines, stormwater management, seating areas, landscaping, fencing, hardscaping, and flexible performance space. The project will also include public art, moveable furniture, pedestrian-scale lighting, bike racks, and interpretive signage. Enable the Auburn Public Theater to Achieve a Sustainable Future: Renovate the Auburn Public Theater to allow for a greater variety of programming and ensure the community anchor's long-term stability. The project includes the creation of a cafe, community event space, a black box theater, an Auburn Music Hall of Fame, an elevator, kitchen space, a new entryway, and exterior renovations such as a new entrance, digital sign, awnings, and marquees. The facility will activate an underutilized stretch of West Genesee Street, bringing students and staff into downtown and cultivating a workforce equipped for the local restaurant and hospitality industries. Establish a Peer Recovery Facility: Rehabilitate a vacant three-story structure at 13 Chapel Street into a central facility for comprehensive recovery, treatment, and complementary health care services. The facility will house the existing not-for-profit Nick's Ride 4 Friends and other health-based organizations with similar missions, fostering a collaborative approach to the urgent issues of addiction. The project will include both interior and exterior renovations. Rehabilitate the Historic Seward House Museum's Carriage House and Barn: Rehabilitate the Seward House Museum's barn and carriage house to serve as meeting, office, and event spaces, preserving a local cultural asset and driving tourism downtown. The project will include stabilizing and repairing the barn foundation and facade, repairing interior and exterior features, updating electrical service, conducting thermal improvements, protecting the buildings from future degradation, and either fixing or removing an adjacent potting shed. Create a Culinary Arts Facility for Cayuga Community College: Renovate the vacant Plaza of the Arts building to accommodate Cayuga Community College's new Culinary Arts Program and provide a cafe and central space for community events. Interior renovations will include instructional space as well as build-out and fixed equipment for a commercial grade kitchen. Convert a Vacant Structure into A Mixed-Use Development: Convert a vacant commercial structure at 22 East Genesee Street into market-rate apartments and ground-floor retail space to create opportunities for people to live, work, and play downtown. The scope of the project includes new plumbing, electrical, sprinkler, and HVAC systems; energy-efficient windows; apartment kitchens and bathrooms; an elevator; fire-rated stairways; facade improvements; flooring and finishes; masonry and carpentry; and storage units. Establish a Fund to Support Small Business Growth, Exterior Improvements, and Upper-Story Housing: Establish a fund to support the establishment and growth of small businesses, improve the built environment, and increase housing options in downtown Auburn. The program will provide financial support to establish or expand businesses, implement exterior improvements that complement the character of downtown, and undertake interior improvements to renovate or create upper-story housing. Renovate the Health Central Building to Accommodate Specialty Health Services: Rehabilitate 10,000 square feet of space within the Health Central building to house medical, surgical, behavioral, and dental specialties, as well as additional diagnostic and treatment services, reducing the need for residents to travel outside of the community for health care, creating new local employment opportunities, and attracting or retaining ancillary service providers. Examples of improvements include the creation of a waiting room and reception area, exam or therapy rooms, individual and group offices, nursing or staff working areas, and administrative areas and storage. Launch a Public Art Placemaking Initiative: Install public art throughout the DRI area to celebrate local artists, beautify the public realm, and attract visitors to a new 'Avenue of the Arts.' Proposed installations include sculpture and green space improvements at the Boyle Center, a Harriet Tubman Life Cycle sculpture at Freedom Park, a sculpture at South Street and Genesee Street, a mural at the Auburn Public Theater, a mural at Nash's Art Supply, and light pole banners along Loop Road establishing the 'Avenue of the Arts.' Restore a Historic Chapel as a Cultural and Tourist Asset: Renovate the Willard Memorial Chapel, a National Historic Landmark, to improve its community event venue and promote cultural heritage tourism. The project consists of the interior restoration of the chapel in keeping with its original design and finishes, and exterior improvements to the parking lot and landscaping. Renovate the Vacant Rudolph Building for Mixed-Uses: Convert the Rudolph Building at 99 Genesee Street into a mixed-use development across from the Auburn Public Theater. New ground-floor retail space and upper-story residential units will boost traffic downtown following installation of a sprinkler system and new electrical and plumbing, renovations to apartments and other interior spaces, and facade improvements. Auburn developed a Strategic Investment Plan to revitalize its downtown with $300,000 in planning funds from the $10 million DRI grant. A Local Planning Committee made up of municipal representatives, community leaders and other stakeholders led the effort, supported by a team of private sector experts and state planners. The Strategic Investment Plan for downtown Auburn examined local assets and opportunities and identified economic development, transportation, housing, and community projects that align with the community's vision for downtown revitalization and that are poised for implementation. The DRI projects are the latest example of Governor Cuomo's ongoing commitment to Auburn and Central New York. New York State Secretary of State Rossana Rosado said, "All of Central New York and the rest of the state stands proud with the City of Auburn today, as the community reaps the benefits of Governor Cuomo's Downtown Revitalization Initiative. Auburn's downtown is on the precipice of great things and these investments will ensure a bright future for the city and the entire region." Empire State Development President, CEO and Commissioner Howard Zemsky said, "Auburn's DRI projects will build on the city's existing attractions and assets, adding the infrastructure improvements that will create an engaging downtown area and further the sustainable economic growth goals of Central NY Rising." New York State Homes and Community Renewal Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas said, "Governor Cuomo's Downtown Revitalization Initiative is a hands-on approach to bringing state investment to municipalities across the state. In cities like Auburn, we are working directly with communities to identify projects that will have a real impact. Over the last eight years, the Governor has invested $231 million in Central New York that has created or preserved affordable housing for more than 8,000 residents. This $10 million award demonstrates that we are doing more than ever to strengthen local economies, increase access to affordable housing and improve infrastructure as we work to keep Central New York rising." Central New York Regional Economic Development Council Co-Chairs Randy Wolken, President & CEO of the Manufacturers Association of Central New York and Deborah Stanley, President of the State University of New York at Oswego said, "The Downtown Revitalization Initiative is bolstering Auburn's economic renaissance by investing in local assets which will attract jobs and private investment further transforming the downtown area. These strategic and diverse projects will help develop the business district, and build on our momentum to keep the Central New York region rising." Senator Robert E. Antonacci said, "It has been a pleasure to work with the Governor on the Downtown Revitalization Initiative. Auburn is ready to grow and prosper. The downtown core of the city has been ripe for potential for years, and with these investments, the city can truly change direction and welcome additional growth. We congratulate the City of Auburn and look forward to seeing these projects come to life." Assembly Member Gary D. Finch said, "The Downtown Revitalization Initiative has helped dozens of downtowns across the state create momentum for positive change. It's Auburn's turn today as we recognize the important projects that will be funded to make our city better for visitors, workers and residents. I thank Governor Cuomo and the Central New York Regional Economic Development Council for recognizing the importance of Auburn to the entire state." Cayuga County Legislature Chair Tucker Whitman said, "Auburn's businesses and residents have ample reason to be proud today. With these investments, our downtown will be brought back to life. The Downtown Revitalization Initiative has shown time and again that smart economic development policies can foster real change in communities, and I am excited to see the progress take place in Auburn." Auburn Mayor Michael D. Quill said, "I am always proud of the work we do in Auburn, but today is an especially proud day. We are seeing real economic development in our downtown thanks to Governor Cuomo's Downtown Revitalization Initiative. These projects will amplify our city's best features and put long-term plans in place to ensure that future generations will be able to enjoy what we have to offer." For more information on the Downtown Revitalization Initiative, go to: Accelerating CNY Rising Today's announcement complements "Central NY Rising," the region's comprehensive blueprint to generate robust economic growth and community development. The State has already invested more than $5.6 billion in the region since 2012 to lay the groundwork for the plan - capitalizing on global market opportunities, strengthening entrepreneurship and creating an inclusive economy. Today, unemployment is down to the lowest levels since before the Great Recession; personal and corporate income taxes are down; and businesses are choosing places like Syracuse, Oswego and Auburn as a destination to grow and invest in. Now, the region is accelerating Central NY Rising with a $500 million State investment through the Upstate Revitalization Initiative, announced by Governor Cuomo in December 2015. The State's $500 million investment will incentivize private business to invest well over $2.5 billion - and the region's plan, as submitted, projects up to 5,900 new jobs.