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2023 Annual Report

 2023 Annual Report 

Click on the link to view the Port of Oswego Authority 2023 Annual Report.

2023 Annual Report

Contractor Bid Submittals for West Terminal Pier

Contractor Bid Submittals for West Terminal Pier

Click on the link to view the results of the contractor bid submittals for the West Terminal Pier Repair project.

Contractor Bid Submittals

Contractor Bid Submittals for Goble Marina Bathhouse Renovations

 Click on the link to view the results of the contractor bid submittals for the Goble Marina Bathhouse Renovations.

Contractor Bid Submittals

Economic Impact of Maritime Shipping in the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Region

This report is completed every five years, and was funded by the St. Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation, St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation, American Great Lakes Port Association, and others.  The study took over eight months to complete, with over 1,000 data points gathered.    


Some highlights of the report include:   


  • economic activity generated over half billion dollars related to maritime operations at the Port
  • the Port’s revenue impact or business operations on cargo operations was over $399.8 million
  • jobs – a surge in jobs, from 209 jobs in 2017, increasing to 2229 jobs in 2022
  • 300 indirect jobs support other jobs in the overall community
  • the Port is a job creator for the regional community but also for the state
  • taxes – employees, cargo handled, and the economic activity the Port supports generates taxes;  over $80 million in federal and state taxes generated  through cargo operations
  • of the three ports on this report in New York state, the Port had 49% of the economic activity, 63% of business revenue, and 43% of local purchases in New York      


To view the full report   

Economic Impact Report


















Senator Schumer

 Senator Schumer Secures Funding for Oswego Break Wall 

Once again, Sen. Chuck Schumer is working to make positive improvements in our CNY Economy, said Port Exec. Director Bill Scriber. Thanks to his more than $17 million earmark in the Federal budget for the Port of Oswego, the entire Oswego harbor break wall will be repaired—including the break wall surrounding Oswego’s treasured West Pierhead Lighthouse. That benefits the Port and three other businesses on the harbor, as well as the vast tourism and recreational boating and fishing in Oswego.

Port of Oswego - Ontario Center for the Performing Arts Study

The Port of Oswego Authority has recently conducted a feasibility study on a Performing Arts Center to be located within the Port of Oswegdo Authority property. The feasibility study was conducted by the DLR Group.

DLR Group is a global integrated design firm specializing in significant cultural arts projects. Ranked as the No. 1 U.S. Cultural Design Firm by BD World Architecture. DLR Group designed the Onondaga Lakeview Amphitheater and the $100M expansion and renovation of the Cleveland Museum of Natural History.

The study looked at the economic feasibility and community support of a venue to  be located within the City of Osewgo. The studycollaboarated with the Ontario Center for Performing Arts, Inc.; a local non-profit performing arts venue serving Upstate New York for over 40 years. The study provided preliminary business plans, input on design, capacity, layout, market potential and financial analysis.

Fran Enwright, Chair of the Port Board of Directors, stated "he is excited about the concept of a multi venue center that would make a significant, positive impact on the local economy attracting people from around New York State and country."

This was paid for by the Port of Oswego Authority and a grant from the State Economic Development Agency. During the study the port reached out to multiple community groups and leaders.

William Scriber, Executive Director, stated "he is happy the port was able to undertake the study and provide a clear direction for community improvement in keeping with the Legislative Mission of the port."

Click on the following link to view the feasibility study:

Public Hearing (Zoom Meeting) - Comprehensive Plan

Public Notice

The Port of Oswego Authority pursuant to Public Authorities Law, Port of Oswego Authority Section 1354 is developing a Comprehensive PlanA Zoom public hearing will be held on November 5, 2020.  Information on the plan and the hearing can be found at the ports web site,  Comments will be accepted at until November 5, 2020. A link to the zoom meeting will be posted here on November 4, 2020.


Due to the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Emergency, and pursuant to Governor Cuomo's Executive Order 202.1 issued on March 12, 2020 suspending the Open Meetings Law and subsequent executive Orders, the Port of Oswego will conduct its public hearing on Thursday, November 5th, at 11:00am on Zoom.


Members of the public may attend, listen or view this hearing meeting by going to the web site:

Meeting ID: 882 6848 6453

Passcode: 009413

To listen by phone:

 +1 646 558 8656 US (New York) 

POA General Terms and Conditions -

Click here to view the General Terms and Conditions.pdf

Contact William Scriber, Executive Director, for questions on the General Terms and Conditions.

Castaloop USA Becomes Port Of Oswego Authority Partner

Through this agreement, Castaloop USA shall market and represent the Port of Oswego’s commercial interests for the development of new business opportunities while the Port Authority will continue to maintain its quality operational services that the market has come to expect from Oswego.


Executive Director, Oswego Port Authority, Mr. William Scriber: ‘’ As the port moves forward with an aggressive expansion plan we see the partnership with Castaloop as a key to accessing new business opportunities. As the only port in New York State on Lake Ontario we are an intermodal transportation center at the crossroads of the Northeastern North American’s shipping market with access to over 60 million people.   As we move forward with Castsloop we are staying true to our mission of creating economic opportunities for both the local community and New York State. “

’’We are proud of the Board of Director’s confidence in Castaloop’s ability to foster growth for the Port of Oswego and the Greater New York Northern region.  We recognize Executive Director Scriber’s leadership and vision to achieve such an alliance, a first for the Port of Oswego.  As Castaloop continues its growth, it is through such strategic partnerships that we strive to establish our service network of locations throughout the St.Lawrence, Great Lakes and Maritimes in sharing our vision with the market: To Make a Difference.’’ Castaloop USA Inc.’s President, Mr. Philip O’Brien: 

For all questions or market inquiries, please address Castaloop USA Inc.: - 418-948-4141 or Oswego Port Authority 315-343-4503,

The Oswego Port Authority is a New York State Public Authority created by state legislation to serve as an economic catalyst on Lake Ontario and New York State.

Castaloop USA Inc, is a Delaware company wholly owned by Castaloop Inc.

'In the next three years, you won't recognize the port' Scriber takes the wheel at Port of Oswego, plans expansion and development

By Matthew Reitz, The Palladium-Times 12/27/2018

OSWEGO - With the interim tag recently removed from his title, Port of Oswego Authority Director William Scriber says the port has made significant strides in the past year and is "moving ahead quickly" to develop the Oswego city waterfront and increase shipping and storage capacity.

Scriber was appointed interim director at the port in 2017 following the departure of former chief Zelko Kirincich. Scriber served as county Board of Elections commissioner for more than a decade before joining the port in 2009 when he was named manager of administrative services.

Following a year in which the port set records for moving grain, Scriber says plans are in development to improve infrastructure and the surrounding area.

"In just one short year we're moving as quickly forward as we can and I suspect in the next three years, you won't recognize the port," Scriber said in an interview with The Palladium-Times. "We're looking to get back to the orginal focus of a community center that supports the city, the county and upstate New York."


To read the full article go to:

Port of Oswego Economic Impacts Study Released - Supports $26.7M in Economic Activity, More Than 209 Jobs

Oswego County Today 09/24/2018

OSWEGO - The Great Lakes Seaway Partnership announced the release of Economic Impacts of the Port of Oswego, a report documenting the many contributions made by the port and Great Lakes Seaway Shipping to the city of Oswego, Oswego County, state of New York and Great Lakes region.

The study reports that in 2017 the Port of Oswego and maritime commerce supported:

- 209 jobs
- $26.7 million in economic activity
- $13.8 million in personal income and local consumption expenditures
- $5.8 million in federal and state tax revenue

To read the full article go to:

Port of Oswego Establishes New Tariff on Port Operations

The Port of Oswego has established a new tariff on port operations. As a result of the new 2018 ILA contract and new rates to customers, the port has establised preferred loading/unloading times for vessels entering the Port of Oswego. These times will provide the best possible cost to our customers and be in line with other ports on the Great Lakes to ensure effective handling of cargo.

Million-Dollar Deadline Looms for Port as State Legislature Mulls Flood Relief Bill

Oswego County News Now - June 17, 2018
By Brandon Wood

OSWEGO - Time is quickly running out on state legislation that would allow the Port Authority of Oswego to apply for much-needed funding for damage that occurred during high floodwaters last year.

Read the full article here -

Strong Shipping Season for Port of Oswego

'Strong' Shipping Season for Port of Oswego

Oswego County News Now - June 17, 2018

Washington, DC (June 13, 2018) - The St. Lawrence Seaway reported overall gains in traditional cargoes throught the month of May, with shipments of coal, grain, liquid bulk and general cargoes totaling 4.67 million metric tons (mt) - keeping Seaway traffic above the five-year average.

Read the full article here -

Port of Oswego Authority Enters World of Containerization

Future shipments will support the state’s burgeoning craft-brewing industry

Oswego County Business Magazine (11/30/2016)
By Lou Sorendo


    The Spliethoff vessel MV Qamutik


     The Port of Oswego Authority will make history on Tuesday.


    The first container shipment to the port will arrive at a yet-to-be determined time in the afternoon, according to The Great Lakes Seaway Partnership.


    The port is headquartered at 1 E. Second St., Oswego.


    The Spliethoff vessel MV Qamutik will be bringing machinery and brewery equipment from Germany to the port for delivery to Rochester.


    Additional shipments of this type are scheduled for spring and are destined for Fulton and other central New York microbreweries, according to the partnership.


    “The importance of this container call is lower costs to local businesses who import and export goods,” said Laura Blades, director of public affairs for the partnership.


    Zelko Kirincich, executive director and CEO of the port, and Terrence Hammill, port board director, have been pursuing containerization for several years.


    Containerization is a system of intermodal freight transport using intermodal containers — also called shipping containers and ISO containers — made of weathering steel.


    Kirinich has said containerization will increase tonnage, particularly involving agricultural products, and will mean added value and higher-end cargo. Space for additional cargo has been accommodated by the creation of the Oswego Intermodal Center, located at the former site of the FitzGibbons Boiler Co. plant on the east side of Oswego.


    The Port of Oswego is the first U.S. port of call and deep-water port on the Great Lakes from the St. Lawrence Seaway.


    The port’s strategic location puts it less than 350 miles from 60 million people. The port annually handles products that include aluminum; a variety of grains such as corn, wheat and soybeans, salt, fertilizer, petroleum products, cement, nuclear power plant components and windmill parts.


    The port has been the recipient of 14 Pacesetter Awards — an honor extended by the St. Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation to those Great Lakes ports that aggressively market international exports and imports.


National Award Honors College's Agricultural Testing Labs

Oct. 18, 2016


SUNY Oswego’s enterprising Agricultural Testing and Analysis Labs at the Port of Oswego and the Shineman Center won a national Award of Excellence on Tuesday at the University Economic Development Association Annual Summit in Roanoke, Virginia.


The labs—created to close an export loop in the regional economy—utilize trained student chemists to test and analyze grain shipments, meeting the needs of one of the Port of Oswego Authority’s largest customers, Perdue AgriBusiness, and providing on-the-job business experience for undergraduates.
The UEDA honored the program for “synergistically connecting Talent + Place in ways that enrich participation, and otherwise enhance quality of place.”

College President Deborah F. Stanley expressed appreciation for the award. “As the largest employer in Oswego County and a progressive and relevant economic anchor in our region, SUNY Oswego fosters intentional learning that prepares our students to contribute real, hands-on intellectual capital,” she said. “We are focused on the future and work to position our students on the front lines of the next generation of business and industry.”


Supported in part with a commitment of $250,000 through Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office to equip the laboratories, the college’s program seized an opportunity presented by Perdue and its determination to reduce its energy footprint while shipping 30,000 tons of grain a year through the Port of Oswego to its facility in Norfolk, Virginia, for export. The college ultimately seeks to have its student inspectors obtain U.S. Department of Agriculture certification to provide USDA weights, grades and testing, enabling the port to export grain and increasing the volume of corn, soy and wheat passing through Oswego.


“We truly had a call to action by key stakeholders in order to move this project forward,” said Pamela Caraccioli, deputy to the president for external partnerships and economic development. The college made an “active, dynamic and responsive” proposal to Perdue, the Port of Oswego Authority and government leaders.


The testing and analysis program is designed to serve as a model for colleges seeking to respond substantially to the resource needs of business and industry.


“Key to these efforts is fostering critical partnerships with business and industry, as well as government and economic development organizations across the region,” Caraccioli said. “SUNY Oswego’s leaders, faculty, staff and students continuously serve as catalysts for developing collaborations, and make an impact through research, community service and workforce development.”


‘High-stakes job’ 

Caraccioli made the trip to the UEDA’s summit with two students, senior biochemistry major Iain Thompson, working at the Port of Oswego as a cooperative education student, and senior accounting major Noah Oliver, who developed pricing models for the testing and analysis labs.


The two-year-old program, under the leadership of biological sciences faculty member Anthony Contento, has so far trained 26 students in a five-week course coupled with three weeks of on-the job mentoring to ensure excellence, consistency and safety in testing and analysis year-round, including summers.


“This is a really sound operation,” Contento said. “I’m here to manage and train, but it’s student-run once the students complete course requirements and on-the-job training at the Port and Perdue’s facility in Livonia. This is an adult job with very specific requirements they have to meet. This is for business and industry—it’s a higher stakes job.”


Thompson, a 2016 recipient of the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Student Excellence who plans to attend medical school, said the Port of Oswego job transcends testing and analysis to provide a collaborative work experience within a real business framework.


“I’m learning to troubleshoot problems in the field, and to communicate among levels (of co-workers and managers),” he said. “I’m learning the business. I’m learning how food processing and safety are handled. It’s something I’ve always been interested in.”


Scaling up

The labs at the Port of Oswego and the Shineman Center use innovative testing methods and equipment—among them infrared grain analyzers, near-infrared spectrophotometers, falling-number machines and others to weigh, sort and test samples of grain shipments for moisture, starch, proteins and other grading measures. On request, the labs can mill samples into flour to apply other quality criteria.


A second port customer, Sunoco Ethanol, also has begun utilizing the testing laboratories, and additional market research is under way in support of obtaining the USDA designation.


Oliver, the accounting student, is helping to craft a business plan aimed at scaling up the college’s effort, Caraccioli said. For example, among grant applications in the pipeline are one to purchase and equip a mobile lab to take the testing and analysis directly to grain producers and distributors in the region.


Additionally, the college can expand the labs’ capabilities to monitor other agricultural products sourced in New York state, in response to Governor Cuomo’s New York State Certified High Quality initiative.


For more information about the college’s Agricultural Testing and Analysis Labs, contact Anthony Contento at 315-312-2032 or


Port of Oswego welcomes SUNY Oswego co-op workers

SUNY Oswego cooperative education student employees William Ernest and Allison
Taylor (from left) speak with Port of Oswego Executive Director Zelko Kirincich and college
President Deborah F. Stanley, a strong supporter of college-community partnerships that
spur economic development.
Both candidates for graduation in May, Ernest and Taylor work full time in paid co-op
positions with the port and SUNY Oswego’s Agricultural Testing and Analysis Laboratory.
They grade and test New York state-grown grains—corn, soybeans and wheat—at the
port prior to the exchange between farmer and buyer, and do higher-level analysis in the
college’s lab.
Their mentor, biological sciences faculty member Anthony Contento, said the Port of
Oswego also supports seven student internships in the sciences and business.
U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer is spearheading the port’s application to gain U.S. Department
of Agriculture designation as a certified grain inspection facility.
(Posted: Mar 15, 2016)

National Marine Sanctuaries


National Marine Sanctuaries
February 8, 2016
Whereas, the National Marine Sanctuaries Act of 1972 authorizes the Secretary of
Commerce to identify and designate areas of the marine environment as sanctuaries and
provide for the comprehensive conservation and management of these areas; and
Whereas, the federal government has designated 14 National Marine Sanctuaries,
including the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary in Lake Huron; and
Whereas, the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary was established in 2000 at 448
square miles and was expanded in 2014 to include 4300 square miles; and
Whereas, in June, 2014 the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration launched a
national sanctuary nominating process and encouraged citizens to nominate candidate sites;
Whereas, the State of Wisconsin has nominated 875 square miles of Lake Michigan waters
to be designated as the "Wisconsin-Lake Michigan National Marine Sanctuary; and
Whereas, four New York counties and the City of Oswego are working to nominate a large
section of southeast Lake Ontario as the "Great Lake Ontario National Marine Sanctuary;
Whereas, Erie County, Pennsylvania has nominated all Pennsylvania waters of Lake Erie -
a total of 759 square miles - as the "Lake Erie Quadrangle National Marine Sanctuary;" and
Whereas, Buffalo area activists are developing a proposal to nominate New York portions
of eastern Lake Erie and western Lake Ontario as the "Erie Niagara National Marine
Sanctuary;" and
Whereas, in northern Wisconsin and Michigan three marine sanctuary proposals are under
development which would engulf almost all U.S. waters of Lake Superior; and
Whereas, the waters of the Great Lakes are a shared resource enjoyed by many users; and
Whereas, the American Great Lakes Ports Association and its members oppose restrictions
on the waters of the Great Lakes that may negatively impact maritime commerce; and
Whereas, marine sanctuaries often include restrictions that might impede ship and port
operations, and landside development;
Therefore, be it resolved, that the American Great Lakes Ports Association opposes the
inclusion of ports, harbors, shipping lanes, privately held waterlots, and dredge material
disposal sites, within the boundaries of any proposed national marine sanctuary in the Great
Lakes region; and
Be it further resolved, that the American Great Lakes Ports Association opposes marine
sanctuary restrictions within any marine sanctuary in the Great Lakes that may limit vessel

USACE to host ribbon cutting for completion of Oswego Harbor Detached Breakwater repairs

Buffalo, New York--The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Buffalo District will host a ribbon cutting ceremony for the completion of the Oswego Harbor Detached Breakwater repair work, Wednesday, November 25, 2015 at 10:30a.m., in the McCrobie Building, 41 Lake St, Oswego, NY 13126. 


Attendees include:

*             U.S. Senator Charles Schumer

*             U.S. Congressman John Katko

*             City of Oswego Mayor Thomas W. Gillen

*             Port of Oswego Chairman Terrence Hammill

*             USACE Buffalo District Commander LTC Karl Jansen


The Oswego Harbor Detached Breakwater experienced extensive damage during SuperStorm Sandy due to oversized waves and the extreme angle they were hitting the structure. Because the damage was caused by Sandy, the breakwater was eligible of funding to repair the structure using Superstorm Sandy appropriations.


The work was completed a year ahead of schedule by Durocher Marine Division / Kokosing Construction Company, using a combination of armor stone material from the Jamesville Quarry, NY and the Rock of Ages Quarry, VT and 973, 16-ton dolos formed and poured by Lakeland Concrete Products, Lima, NY.

Hochul visits port, says "sky is the limit" for facility

By BENJAMIN KAIL | Posted: Friday, September 25, 2015 4:00 am

OSWEGO — After an extended tour meeting local officials, workers and students gaining hands-on experience at the Port of Oswego Authority Thursday morning, Lieutenant Gov. Kathy Hochul says the "sky is the limit" for the port's potential.


Hochul's visit follows heavy state and federal investment into the port this year, including a $40 million boost to improve rail lines and rail yards connecting the port to New York City and beyond, and the ongoing $19 million Army Corps of Engineer project to repair the Oswego Harbor breakwater.


Port Executive Director Zelko Kirincich and other officials gave Hochul a crash course on port products — especially aluminum and grain — and the heavy equipment used to move them, even encouraging Hochul to try out a forklift on her own.


In an interview after the tour, Hochul said she and Gov. Andrew Cuomo believe the port to be an economic driver both locally and for the entire state.


"The port has the capacity to do so much more," she said. "The sky is the limit." She particularly noted the port's effort to provide students with in-depth job training.


"The alignment with SUNY Oswego is great," Hochul said, referencing the college's lab where students test grain shipped in and out of the port for Perdue AgriBusiness. "It provides the economy a pipeline of trained talent." Kirincich said nearly 20 students — a mix of SUNY Oswego, CiTi and summer interns — get an experience at the port they can't have in the classroom.


Richard Converse, a port mechanic who trains CiTi students, said their busy workload varies from day to day but includes servicing the port's basic and heavy-duty equipment and even performing oil changes occasionally for charter boat captains.


"We add value to the area by hiring a lot," Kirincich said after the tour. "Kids want to learn. They're very hungry." Port officials note the facility's revenues have been increasing steadily — from $3.6 million in the 2012-2013 fiscal year up to more than $5 million projected this year — and they say Hochul's visit is one more sign the port is on state leaders' radar for economic growth.


"It's a good opportunity for [Hochul] to see the monumental strides being made here," said Terry Hammill,chairman of the port Board of Directors. "It's great to have a small port become an economic powerhouse benefiting the whole state." Mayor Tom Gillen, who also serves on the port Board of Directors, said the port's success goes hand in hand with possible expansion of Fort Ontario and the potential designation of a four-county shoreline region of Lake Ontario as a National Marine Sanctuary.


"Were just breaking the surface of the impact the port will have on the city, the county and central New York," Gillen said.

Rolling out a revised plan for an inland port

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on September 30, 2015 at 6:08 PM, updated October 01, 2015 at 9:56 AM
Inland Port larger view.JPG
Map shows railroad lines that would bring cargo to and from a proposed 225-acre "inland port" east of Syracuse. (Central New York Regional Economic Development Council)

Syracuse, N.Y. — A proposed 225-acre cargo distribution facility east of Syracuse has the potential to create more than 2,000, according to proponents.


"It's exciting for New York," said Zelko Kirincich, executive director and CEO of the Port of Oswego Authority, which would operate the facility. "It's a need for the entire state. It will serve our industry, our exporters and our importers."

Inland Port.JPG
Star marks the general location of a 225-acre cargo distribution facility that proponents say could create more than 2,000 Central New York jobs. The colored lines are railroads that would bring cargo to and from the facility.  


No formal announcement has been made about the project, but some details were released Wednesday at a meeting of the Central New York Regional Economic Development Council.


The facility would be built on a vacant, 225-acre site off Interstate 481 in the Jamesville area. A map displayed at the council's meeting shows the general location of the proposed facility to be a former industrial site north of I-481 and south of Syracuse University's Skytop student housing complex. The New York, Susquehanna and Western Railway, which would be a partner in the project, operates a rail line through the site.


It is not the railroad yard in Manlius where proponents had previously discussed building the facility.


Kirincich said the Manlius railroad yard that was previously studied does not have enough room to accommodate the facility and has the disadvantage of being surrounded by residential development. The new site has neither of those problems, he said.


Robert Simpson, co-chairman of the economic development council, said the project is among those included in the council's application to Gov. Andrew Cuomo's $1.5 billion Upstate Revitalization Initiative.


The council voted 15-0 to approve its application to the initiative Wednesday during a meeting at the Holiday Inn in Salina. The application will not be made public until it is submitted to the state on Monday, however.


Under the initiative, three of seven competing regions in the state will each be awarded $500 million over five years to defray the cost of economic development projects that are designed to generate long-term growth.


The cargo facility, sometimes referred to as an "inland port," would accept shipping containers transported by rail from the Port of New York and New Jersey. The containers would be taken off rail cars and put on trucks for distribution throughout the Northeast and Canada.


Proponents say the facility is needed to ease growing congestion at the Port of New York and New Jersey. The congestion is expected to get worse when bigger locks under construction on the Panama Canal begin allowing container ships capable of carrying up to three times more cargo than current ships to pass through on their way to East Coast ports.


Simpson said the facility has the potential to create 300 to 400 jobs directly related to the loading and offloading of cargo. In addition, the facility would spur the construction of up to 3 million square feet of warehouse and distribution space, leading to the creation of an additional 1,600 jobs, he said.


He said the site's location just 1.5 miles from the south side of Syracuse, an area with high poverty rates, is an advantage because it would be a potential source of employment for people who need it the most.


Improving access to employment opportunities will be a major element of the regional economic development council's proposal to the state. At the council's meeting Wednesday, Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul announced a $100,000 state grant for a pilot program that will provide bus transportation from areas of Syracuse with high poverty rates to places of employment. The money will be used by Syracuse Express, a transportation company in Liverpool, to purchase buses for the program.


Simpson said the projects the council has included in its application to the state have the potential to create nearly 6,000 jobs. The council is seeking $103.2 million in state funding in the first year of the Upstate initiative, but private investment in the projects would be 16 times the public investment, he said.


Contact Rick Moriarty anytime: Email | Twitter | Facebook | 315-470-3148

Central New York makes its case for $500 million in state economic aid

By Rick Moriarty | 

on October 05, 2015 at 7:43 PM, updated October 05, 2015 at 8:07 PM

Syracuse, N.Y. — Drone research, indoor farms, a cargo terminal and a resource complex for veterans are among the projects that would receive funding if Central New York is one of the winners in Gov. Andrew Cuomo's $1.5 billion Upstate Revitalization Initiative.


The Central New York Regional Economic Development Council's application to the new state aid program lays out a plan to invest public and private dollars into six "signature investment" areas that the council said could create 5,909 local jobs.


"We have been challenged to think big," the council said in the application, which was signed by CenterState CEO President Robert Simpson and Syracuse University Chancellor Kent Syverud, the council's co-chairs. "And we have. We have reached out to businesses inside and outside our region, and we have meaningful transactions to bring to the table immediately."


The 88-page plan, entitled "CNY Rising From The Ground Up," does not contain a detailed list of all anticipated development projects, with costs and job-creation estimates for each.


For example, it makes reference to "strategic transactions" that it said could create 1,963 jobs in the region. Together, they account for $598.8 million of the $889.9 million in first-year project costs included in the plan. However, the application does not provide details of any of the transactions.


Instead, the council described six industries and strategies that it would invest in if it is chosen as one of the three regions to receive $500 million in economic development aid over the next five years.


These are the six areas where the council would spend the state aid:


Unmanned systems: The council said it would invest $250 million over the next five years to make Central New York a global center for the development of unmanned aerial and ground systems and their safe integration into commercial airspace and road traffic.


It pegged the cost at $81.2 million, with $50 million coming from the state. The first-year investment would create 1,364 jobs for the region, it said.


Indoor farms: The council would spend $50 million on programs to boost the region's agricultural output and exports.


Among the projects would be the development of indoor farms — also known as "controlled environment agriculture" — in Cayuga and Onondaga counties. Combined, they would cover 150 acres, use $15 million in state grants and have the potential to create 339 jobs, the council said.


Global manufacturing and logistics hub: The council would invest $40 million to create an intermodal cargo transfer facility, or "inland port," on a 225-acre former mining property off Interstate 481 in the Jamesville area.


The hub could directly create 300 jobs, plus 1,644 jobs in surrounding manufacturing, warehousing and distribution facilities that would be attracted to it, the council said. In addition, it would reduce shipping costs for regional manufacturers by 40 percent, it said.


National veterans resource complex: The council would invest $12.5 million for a hub at Syracuse University that would provide research, programming, education, training and entrepreneurship support for military veterans.


The complex would utilize $12.5 million in state funds and create approximately 300 jobs, the council said.


Government modernization: The council would invest $25 million to create and implement a plan for more effective and efficient local government.


The investment would advance the work of the Commission on Local Government Modernization for Syracuse and Onondaga County, the council said.


Fighting poverty: The council would spend $50 million implementing strategies to improve economic opportunities in distressed communities.


The strategies, made through a new organization that would be called the Alliance for Economic Inclusion, would include attracting and growing good jobs in poor areas of the region and establishing workforce and education programs that align with employer needs in key industry sectors. The council said the effort could put 5,000 unemployed or underemployed residents into jobs.


The council appears to have been following the state's instructions when it decided not to include details about the "strategic transactions" that account for more than half of the projected first-year project costs and a big chunk of the jobs the council said its plan would create. The instructions required the seven competing regional councils to submit applications that focused more on long-term economic strategies rather than simply list potential building projects.


The three regions that win the competition will be required to submit more detailed project proposals and work with the state to establish grant agreements. Cuomo is expected to announce the winners of the competition in early December.

APNewsBreak: Records offer peek into legal tactics in probe of NY-NJ authority in use of $1.8B

By JAKE PEARSON and DAVID B. CARUSO | Associated Press | Oct 2, 2015 12:05 AM CDT in Politics


NEW YORK (AP) — Documents obtained by The Associated Press offer a peek into the legal strategies being explored by officials for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey who are under investigation for a controversial decision to divert $1.8 billion from an agency rail project to state highway repairs.

One tactic apparently under consideration — persuading prosecutors to wrap up the probe with a sternly worded grand jury report instead of an indictment.


The Manhattan district attorney and the Securities and Exchange Commission have both been examining whether the Port Authority misled bondholders when it used the money on state-owned roads, including the Pulaski Skyway, an elevated road connecting two New Jersey cities, Newark and Jersey City.


That's an issue because the Port Authority's main business is operating metropolitan New York's major airports, seaports and key river crossings, and the bi-state agency is generally forbidden from spending money on state roads.


Facing an empty highway fund, New Jersey Gov. Christie canceled a planned new rail tunnel beneath the Hudson River and in 2011 announced that the authority would spend $1.8 billion from that project to rehabilitate the Skyway and a nearby bridge and road.


Authority officials justified the move by declaring that the Skyway was an access road to the Lincoln Tunnel, a circuitous eight miles away. One of the authority's own lawyers warned that the explanation "may raise questions in the minds of some."


The documents obtained by the AP in response to a public records request show that nine outside law firms hired to represent the Port Authority and its employees in the Pulaski Skyway inquiries billed for more than 1,100 hours of work in June, July and August alone at a cost of more than $650,000.


The Port Authority has been disclosing billing invoices in the investigation for months but ordinarily blacks out detailed information on the work the lawyers are doing. In the recent AP request, one page was left unredacted.


That invoice, submitted Sept. 11, revealed that a lawyer for the Port Authority's general counsel has been researching the district attorney's past use of grand jury reports to resolve criminal investigations. That's a tactic that prosecutors use in rare circumstances when they want to publicly identify systemic problems in agencies or institutions but do not bring criminal charges.


The legal team representing Port Authority officials also has been strategizing how to respond to an internal inquiry being conducted by a Washington D.C., law firm.


That work, according to the invoice, included research on legal protections that prevent public employees from being forced to incriminate themselves during interviews by their employers.


The Port Authority said in a statement that it had hired attorney William Jacobson, of the firm, Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe, to advise the authority's board on "corporate governance" issues arising from the Pulaski Skyway probes.


A spokeswoman for the Manhattan district attorney declined to comment on the investigation. The SEC also has declined to discuss the status of its probe.


Separately, the U.S. Attorney in New Jersey has sent subpoenas to the Port Authority regarding investigations into a host of other issues, including United Airlines' decision to start a money-losing flight from Newark to a small city in South Carolina near where the Port Authority's then-chairman had a vacation home. The airline began flying at a time when United was lobbying the Port Authority for a new hanger and lower fees at Newark's airport.


The investigations began after Port Authority officials and an aide to the Republican Christie were accused of creating a traffic jam around the George Washington Bridge to punish a local Democratic mayor for not endorsing the governor for re-election. One official has pleaded guilty and two are awaiting trial.

Novelis plant in Oswego adds hundreds of jobs thanks to multi-million dollar expansion

by Alex Dunbar, CNY Central 01/28/2015

OSWEGO -- Over the past five years, Novelis has quietly made major investments in their Oswego facility. Novelis has been a leader in aluminum recycling for years and recently the company has made a bold move into a new customer base.


"Over the past five years we have invested around $400 million here, primarily around the automotive business if you will,” says plant manager Chris Smith.

This week a $48 million expansion opened. It takes in scrap aluminum, melts it down into raw material, and then processes the new aluminum onto massive spools for one of the biggest clients in the auto business. This year Novelis is providing the aluminum for the body of the best-selling pickup truck in the U.S. - the Ford F-150. The 2015 model weighs 700 pounds less than last year’s because the body is 95% aluminum.

"Basically they have certain fuel efficiency targets they need to hit going forward. So the easiest way they can do that is replacing steel with aluminum,” Smith says.


The new expansion has two lines - four stories tall that run aluminum sheets through a massive building before they are wound onto spools for automakers. A third production line is being built right now next to the other two - it is expected to open in December of this year. Novelis' growth has been helped by a partnership with the Port of Oswego, allowing them to ship materials across the great lakes.


"They listened to our needs, they learned about the automotive business and they've been really lock step with us along the way,” Smith says.


Novelis hopes to add 250 jobs over the next few years - that is in addition to the 450 jobs the automotive expansion already brought to Oswego.

Massive project to protect Oswego's Harbor

$18-million for super-sized rocks and more

by Laura Hand, CNY Central

These concrete forms, called Dolos, are being made near Rochester to rebuild the Port of Oswego and protect from erosion  / Photojournalist Craig McDowell

OSWEGO -- The Oswego Harbor is getting a makeover, to repair erosion damage from Hurricane Sandy and stop future wave damage.


There is nothing small about the project:  its $18-million price tag is being spent on bringing in granite boulders, many of them in the 32-thousand pound range, to shore up break walls and shorelines. There ae trains, every two and a half days, bringing in cargoes of rocks from near Syracuse and from Vermont.  The granite is leftover from  countertop production and each is numbered to be placed in an exact place. Once unloaded from trains, the granite is moved by flatbed to behind the Port warehouses, where giant forklifts stack them until needed.


Smaller rocks, some as small as 3 pounds, are being used to 'fill in the holes' in the underwater rock re-enforcements, and they'll be coated with DOLOS, being fabricated in Lima, just south of Rochester. 


The 32-thousand pound pre-cast concrete structures will help disperse the energy of oncoming waves.  Lakelands Concrete Products is manufacturing them to Army Corps of Engineers specifications, and says it's the largest project of this structure size in North America. The 1,000 Dolos (it means knucklebone) are being staged just beyond Oswego's Maritime Museum, trucked in on flatbeds. Workers attach lifting chains and they're moved into position by an oversized  dark green piece of equipment.


Port of Oswego Authority Executive Director Zelko Kirincich says the harbor rebuilding will mean less dredging (and less expense) for his operations, and better protection for the port.


The port stabilization is also good news for anglers:  the underwater system being created under Army Corps of Engineers supervision is also expected to be fish-friendly.


The project is on schedule and should be finished by November, when heavy waves start rolling in.

January 22, 2014 - Senator Schumer Secures Heavy Equipment

 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: January 22, 2014




Schumer Met with New Port Director Zelko Kirincich to Discuss Plans to Make Oswego Prime Port in Eastern Great Lakes – Reveals that the Port Will Receive a New Equipment Like Container “Reach Stacker” to Handle More Traffic, Unloading of Large Shipments

Schumer Also Revealed that, After his Push, the Port of Oswego Will Receive a New Dump Truck, Two New Generators and Four New Security Cameras, Making the Port of Oswego the Most Secure Port in the Great Lakes System

Schumer: Port of Oswego is a Growing Economic Engine for the Region that – with New Equipment – is Poised to Go Into High-Gear

Today, at the Port of Oswego, U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer met with the newly-installed Director of the Port of Oswego and announced that he has secured on behalf of the Port a new reach stacker – a piece of equipment like a forklift used to unload heavy cargo – a new dump truck, and two new generators.  Schumer secured this new equipment from the Federal Surplus Property Program, which offers public law enforcement agencies like the Port Authority the chance to acquire used equipment.  Schumer also announced that, after his push, the Port of Oswego has been awarded a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Port Securities grant to install four new security cameras, giving port officials a 360-degree view of Port activities.  The new security feature makes the Port of Oswego the most secure port in the Great Lakes system, which is all the more important because the Port is the first international port of call from the Great Lakes on the St. Lawrence.


These improvements come on the heels of a $1.5 million TIGER Grant that Schumer helped secure to fund the rehabilitation of the rail link that connects the Port of Oswego to local distributors and transportation networks. Schumer said the new equipment and infrastructure projects will help the Port increase its capacity, improve the transportation links to and from the port, and make the port more secure – all of which will increase the Port’s contributions to local economic growth.


“With this new equipment, we are one step closer to making the Port of Oswego the prime port in the Eastern Great Lakes.  Increasing the Port’s capacity and security means more shipments can travel through Oswego and deliver economic benefits to the whole region; already the Port pumps over $1 billion into the local economy,” said Schumer.  “The new security cameras will make Oswego the most secure port in the entire Great Lakes system, ensuring that Oswego will be the go-to location for high-security shipments.  What’s more, the reach stacker will allow heavy cargo shipments to more easily unload at Oswego and send their goods off to market.  This new equipment is simply a pile of good news for the port, which is now poised to accept more shipments and grow in prosperity.”


Schumer, joined by Zelko Kirincich, Executive Director of the Port of Oswego, Oswego Mayor Tom Gillen and port board members, announced that he has secured several key items for the Port of Oswego. Schumer first announced that he was successful in getting a transfer of a specialized forklift – known as a container reach stacker – from the federal government’s surplus equipment program.


The Port Authority – a state entity – was eligible to apply for the surplus equipment, and Schumer helped push it through. The forklift will be used to handle and shift containers at the port, in a way that the Port of Oswego does not currently have the capacity to do. Specifically, the Port lacks any ability to handle containers of overweight shipments like aluminum, without renting a crane from an outside contractor, which poses an unnecessarily large expense to the Port.  In addition, the Port will receive a new dump truck and two new generators from the Federal Surplus Property Program to add to their existing capacity. Schumer also announced that the Port would be receiving a DHS Port Securities Grant that will fund the purchase and installation of four new security cameras at the Port.  The Port of Oswego had applied for this grant in collaboration with the City of Oswego Police Dept., the U.S. Coast Guard, and the U.S. Border Patrol. The grant will provide $20,000 for four additional security cameras that would give port security a 360-degree view of the entire port and allow them to share data with local and federal law enforcement. Stationing four additional cameras at Oswego would bring the total amount of security cameras to thirty, and make the Port of Oswego the most secure port in the Great Lakes System.


Schumer explained that the Port of Oswego is a highly-trafficked international port of call, which puts a premium on security.  The additional security cameras and ability to quickly share data with other law enforcement agencies safeguards the Port of Oswego and allows them to handle higher-security shipments, thus boosting their overall economic potential.  Trade through the Port of Oswego, as well as the direct and indirect employment it generates in the region, creates over $1 billion in local economic activity according to estimates from last year.


Schumer has long advocated for upgrading the infrastructure both at the Port of Oswego and its surrounding transportation systems.  In 2011, Schumer fought hard to secure over $160,000 of homeland security funding which allowed the Oswego port to build and install a 17-camera Integrated Surveillance System at the Port of Oswego Authority.  At the time, Schumer argued that because the investment in a high-tech Integrated Surveillance System at the Oswego Port was accessible to all levels of law enforcement, it constituted a major step towards increasing safety and emergency preparedness in Oswego Harbor. The funding came at a crucial time when other cuts might have impacted preparation for a local or national emergency, but the award helped to ensure that the port remained safe and secure. It has helped expand port recovery and resiliency capabilities; and further capabilities to prevent, detect, respond to, and recover from attacks involving improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and other non-conventional weapons.


Last year, Schumer secured a $1.5 million DOT Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) Grant to help the Port upgrade its deteriorating rail link.  The grant will allow the port to make critical upgrades to infrastructure and equipment so that it can meet future shipping demands, increase productivity, and preserve its role as a critical resource for businesses throughout Central New York and even across the globe.  Schumer had personally met with Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx to urge him to select the Port of Oswego for TIGER funding.  The Port will use this funding to upgrade rail along the docks, which customers like Trafigura aluminum and Goldman Sachs rely on, and that has deteriorated to the point of shutting down. What's more, the grant will allow the port to leverage $1.75 million in matching funds to bring the total investment in infrastructure upgrades to $3.2 million. The Senators noted that the project would create close to 100 construction jobs and prepare the regional port for a new era of increasing shipping demands.

February 19, 2013 - Need For Railroad Upgrades

 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: February 19, 2013


The Port of Oswego Is a Critical Asset For CNY Business & Global Supply Chains For Everything from Soybeans to Aluminum, But Deteriorating Rail Lines & Lack of Critical Equipment Could Hamper The Port’s Ability to Grow & Compete

Schumer Urged the Federal Railroad Admin to Provide Direct Loan for the Rehab of Rail Link That Connects Port To Globe – Without Modernization, Rail Is at Risk of Shutdown & Port Would Be Rendered Useless

Schumer Also Called for Transfer of Surplus Forklift That Port Needs to Handle Boost In Demand, Overweight Shipments of Products like Aluminum

Today, at the Port of Oswego, Senator Schumer unveiled a plan to ensure that the Port of Oswego can make critical upgrades to infrastructure and equipment so that it can meet future shipping demands, increase productivity, and preserve its role as a critical resource for businesses throughout Central New York and even across the globe. Schumer urged the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) to provide a much-needed $1.5 million loan to the Port of Oswego through its Railroad Rehabilitation and Improvement Financing (RRIF) program, which aims to finance development of railroad infrastructure. The Port would use this funding to upgrade rail along the docks, which customers like Trafigura aluminum and Goldman Sachs rely on, and that has deteriorated to the point of shutting down.

 Schumer also noted that the Port of Oswego is in need of a specialized forklift to better handle large, overweight materials at the port, like aluminum. Therefore, Schumer urged the federal government to transfer one such forklift to the Port through a surplus equipment program. Schumer also announced his support for the Harbor Maintenance Act of 2013, which would unlock critical dredging funding that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) needs in order to dredge the Port and maintain operations. While the Port’s popularity with the shipping industry has grown significantly in recent years—and boosted economic growth across Central New York—its ability to maintain existing business, and attract future suppliers hinges on these critical upgrades.


“The Port of Oswego is gearing up for a boost in ship traffic and imports in valuable commodities, but the federal government holds the keys to unlocking the full potential of this trade hub in Central New York,” said Schumer. “The fact that the Port of Oswego’s rail line - a critical link between the port and local supply chains - has been left to decay is unacceptable, and the Federal Railroad Administration should immediately provide funding to revamp this crucial one mile of rail. I am also urging the feds to transfer a surplus specialized forklift to the Port of Oswego that is currently collecting cobwebs so that critical funding is not unnecessarily spent on outside contractors. Finally, I am supporting a proposal to provide federal funds to dredge the Port of Oswego so that the numerous cargo vessels that come through each day can continue to pump over one billion dollars into the local economy each year.”


Schumer was joined by Jonathon Daniels, Executive Director of the Port of Oswego, other Port officials, members of the Oswego County Legislature and the City’s Mayor, Tom Gillen. Over the past several years, the port’s popularity with the shipping industry has exploded due to its status as the only deep-water port on the U.S. shores of Lake Ontario. The port has transformed into a critical asset for retaining existing businesses reliant on shipping and for attracting new growth opportunity to Central New York. Commodities shipped out of the port include soybeans, windmill components, cement, chemicals, ores and minerals, like road salt, which represent some of the major businesses taking advantage of the port throughout Central New York.


However, the Port of Oswego could soon be rendered useless should its rail link, which would transport these commodities to the outside world, be shut down. A $1.5 million direct loan from the RIFF program would allow critical upgrades to a mile of rail to prevent that from happening.

Schumer noted that the RRIF program was established by the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21) in 1998 and amended by the Safe Accountable, Flexible and Efficient Transportation Equity Act: a Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU) in 2005. The RRIF program authorizes the FRA Administrator to provide direct loans and loan guarantees up to $35 billion to improve railroad infrastructure. Eligible borrowers include railroads, state and local governments, government-sponsored authorities and corporations, joint ventures that include at least one railroad, and limited option freight shippers who intend to construct a new rail connection. 


Schumer added that the rail along the docks at the Port has been in place since 1963, and has not undergone any major rehabilitation since that time. The rail has deteriorated to the point where CSX has at times shut down activity, and rail at the north end is out of alignment, which causes derailments on a consistent basis. Furthermore, the port has eight switches on site - none of which work properly - which is hazardous now that the port handles 1,000 cars annually. In the near future, should the Port of Oswego be able to meet expected demand, frequent shipments of soybeans, wheat, corn, aluminum and other cargo could increase bringing another 250-500 cars annually within the next year. However, continued deterioration of the rail could force closure of rail along dock and reduce the Port’s appeal to potential users and new business interested in locating in Central New York.  


While upgrades to rail infrastructure are most critical, Schumer also emphasized his request for the transfer of a specialized forklift – known as a container reach stacker – from the federal government’s surplus equipment program. Port Authority  - a state entity - would apply for the surplus equipment. The forklift would be used to handle and shift containers at the port, in a way that the Port of Oswego does not currently have the capacity to do. Specifically, the Port lacks any ability to handle containers of overweight shipments like aluminum, without renting a crane from an outside contractor, which poses an unnecessarily large expense to the Port. The Federal Surplus Property Program offers public law enforcement entities like the Port Authority the chance to acquire used equipment


Schumer also announced his push for the Harbor Maintenance Act of 2013, which would free up critical dredging funding that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) needs in order to dredge the Port of Oswego and keep the port accessible to the numerous vessels that arrive each day. Each day, sediment settles at the bottom of Lake Ontario, reducing water depth and creating a safety hazard for the cargo vessels – all of which help pump over one billion dollars into the local economy every year. Schumer is backing legislation that would release funding that is stuck in the Harbor Maintenance Trust for dredging in Oswego and other harbors across New York. The recently-introduced Harbor Maintenance Act of 2013 would ensure that incoming money from the Harbor Maintenance fee is spent on harbor maintenance projects, like dredging Oswego Harbor, rather than stuck in the account.


A copy of Schumer’s letter appears below:

February 18, 2013

Mr. Joseph Szabo, Administrator

Federal Railroad Administration

1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE

Washington, DC 20590

Dear Administrator Szabo:


I write today on behalf of the Port of Oswego, located right along Lake Ontario. The Port of Oswego is accessible from any international port in the world and one of the most productive in North America with nearly 120 vessels and more than one million tons of cargo moving through its site on an annual basis. This heavy and growing demand is the reason I write. We must work together to keep the Port competitive and equipped for today’s shipping demands.  


Oswego’s Port boasts international clients and cargoes alike. As you know, these users often require multiple transportation models to move goods. Local and global customers of the Port also demand trucking and rail transportation choices. However, the Port’s rail system is in trouble and at risk for irreversible disrepair unless we act soon.


The one mile of rail line that sits along the terminals of the Port has been in place since 1963. Since then, only routine maintenance measures have been in place to meet safety standards. These routine measures are no match for the wear and tear caused by fifty years of use. In fact, the rail along the dock of the Port has deteriorated so badly that CSX has had to actually shut down rail transportation activity. Rail cars have often derailed, and were it not for the gifted mechanics on the Port’s staff, productivity would be taking a major hit.


With over 1000 rail cars now handled annually by the Port of Oswego, I am urging your administration to act swiftly and approve a Railroad Rehabilitation and Improvement Funding (RRIF) loan for the Port. A loan of $1.5 million to address the one mile of inadequate rail could increase rail usage by nearly 50% within one year of remediation. This loan could also increase shipping numbers for a myriad of commodities transported by local and global clients. However, unchecked, the continued deterioration could force a delay or a closure of the Port’s rail line.


I am confident that with your support the Port of Oswego can remedy this very serious rail issue. With the expedient help of the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), both current and prospective rail users at the Port stand to benefit. Therefore, I respectfully request you work in conjunction with my office to expedite a loan review for the Port of Oswego as it relates to the RRIF program. I invite you to call upon me should you require any further details to ensure rail service in one of New York’s most crucial ports remains functioning and competitive.


The mission of the Port of Oswego Authority is to serve as an economic catalyst in the Central New York Development Council District Region by providing diversified and efficient transportation services and conducting operations in a manner that promotes regional and international growth and development while being mindful of our responsibility to serve as a steward of the environment.
Adopted - September 28, 2011
Revised - March 8, 2017

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