Headlines 2016
Central New York Regional Planning & Development Board
Kathleen A. Rapp, Chairwoman David V. Bottar, Executive Director  

Headlines 2016

Central New York Enterprise Development Fund—September 2016

The CNY Enterprise Development Corporation has closed on $536,180 in loans in 2016. Funds provided include $150,000 in financing to Good Nature Brewery in Hamilton to support the construction of a new brewing facility. Also extended is a $250,000 loan to Paradise Companies, LLC of Syracuse to support the company’s working capital needs during its renovation of the Excellus building in downtown Syracuse. Several new RMAP loans totaling $60,000 were made to various small, rural businesses including a start-up bicycle shop in Auburn.   CNYEDC also supported the expansion of a WBE electrical and security system designer and contractor, Professional Tradesman, Inc. in Syracuse with a $75,000 working capital loan.

Streamlined Solar Permit—September 2016

As part of its ongoing work to reduce solar soft costs, the CNY RPDB helps municipalities to adopt the New York State Unified Solar Permit, a combined building and electrical permit for small rooftop solar PV systems up to 12 kW. The permit was developed by NYSERDA to reduce the time and cost of installing solar, and is part of the state’s NY-Sun Initiative to add more than 3 GW of solar by 2023. To date, 51 municipalities in Central New York have adopted the permit with the assistance of the CNY RPDB, representing more than 40% all adoptees in the state. Municipalities that adopt the NYS Unified Solar Permit are eligible to receive an incentive payment from NYSERDA of $2,500 or $5,000 depending on population size.

SolarizeCNY Joint Municipal Solar Procurement Initiative: Request for Proposals—September 23, 2016

On September 23, 2016, the CNY RPDB issued a Request for Proposals for the development of more than 40 MW of solar PV projects located on 42 buildings and properties owned by more than 20 municipalities and other participating organizations. The CNY RPDB screened 120 sites to identify the most technically and economically feasible sites to be included in the SolarizeCNY initiative. Nearly 28 MW of the total solar PV capacity may be developed as community shared solar projects under the state’s Community Distributed Generation program, which will provide affordable clean energy to residential customers that cannot install solar PV on their homes.

NYSERDA NY Prize Stage I Study Complete—September 2016

A consultant study commission by the CNY RPDB has been completed regarding a Syracuse Microgrid Stage I Feasibility Study under NYSERDA’s NY Prize Program- a first-in-the nation $40 million competition to help communities create microgrids. Microgrids are local energy networks that are able to separate from the larger electrical grid during extreme weather events or emergencies, providing power to individual customers and crucial public services such as hospitals, first responders, and other critical facilities.

The CNY study originated out of an interest from National Grid to improve the system serving the area around Upstate Hospital’s Community General Campus. The feasibility study includes details analyzing the potential capabilities of the microgrid, preliminary technical design, and an assessment of the microgrids commercial and financial feasibility. The results of the Feasibility Study were very favorable and additional funding is being pursued by the agecny under NY Prize Stage II. You can read the full Feasibility Study, and the other 82 completed in Stage I at https://www.nyserda.ny.gov/All-Programs/Programs/NY-Prize/Feasibility-Studies.

Minoa Municipal LED Street Light Project—September 19, 2016

On September 19th, the Village of Minoa voted to move forward with conversion of all 198 cobra head style roadway luminaires to LED in accordance with recommendations made by the CNY RPDB through the CNY Bright Lights program. A formal request was sent to National Grid on September 22nd to move forward with this project which is estimated to save the Village about $4,000 per year, reducing annual emissions by 13 MTCO2e.

NYSERDA Clean Energy Communities—August 3, 2016

On August 3, 2016, Governor Cuomo announced the launch of the Clean Energy Communities (CEC) program to help local governments across the state reduce energy consumption and drive clean energy use in their communities. The CNY RPDB is leading a team of regional outreach coordinators in the Central New York, Finger Lakes, Southern Tier, and Western New York regions.The CNY RPDB and its team will provide technical assistance, step-by-step guidance, project development support and other tools and resources to municipalities and communities.

The CEC provides grants, direct technical support to communities, and recognition to local governments that demonstrate leadership in the area of clean energy. NYSERDA has identified ten High Impact Actions that local governments can take to save money, foster a vibrant economy, and improve the environment. By completing four of the ten actions, municipalities shall earn the CEC designation and become eligible for grants up to $250,000 to support additional clean energy projects.

CNY Electric Vehicle Charging Station Plan—July 2016

With support from NYSERDA, the CNY RPDB completed the Central New York Electric Vehicle Charging Station Plan in July 2016. The objective of the plan is to recommend strategies for supporting current and future electric vehicle (EV) drivers travelling within the region and between NYS regions. Since EVs have a more limited range than conventional internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles that use petroleum fuels, the most critical area of support is providing charging opportunities to EV drivers. Therefore, this Plan identifies gaps where public infrastructure is not currently available in the region to support EV drivers and recommends charging station installations in key locations to establish a comprehensive charging network. In addition to more charging stations, the plan also outlines critical implementation barriers for charging station installations or EV adoption and recommends strategies for addressing them.

CNY RPDB Board Meeting - NOAA Nomination for Eastern Lake Ontario National Maritime Sanctuary—June 2016

On June 22, 2016, the CNY RPDB hosted a Board meeting in the City of Oswego for the purpose of discussing the NOAA recently reopened call for nominations from Great Lakes communities for the establishment of National Maritime Heritage Sanctuaries. NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries has advised a regional task force of four Counties, in the development of a robust nomination for the eastern end of Lake Ontario underwater cultural resource collection which is extensive and impressive. Led by Oswego County, the collaborative project to nominate approximately 2,000 sq. miles of eastern Lake Ontario for the distinctive National Heritage designation could mean substantial related job growth and millions of dollars in new economic development annually in the Central New York Region. CNY RPDB has contributed substantially to the written nomination, organization of the working group, and the public outreach campaign for letters of support from a diverse collection of supporters that have been assembled for inclusion in the nomination which is due to be submitted to NOAA for review in late 2016.

CNY Bright Lights launched—April 2016

CNY Bright Lights, an initiative of the CNY RPDB created to assist municipalities in converting streetlights to light emitting diode (LED) technology, was launched in April 2016.  Through this initiative, the CNY RPDB will provide technical assistance to municipalities in Cayuga, Cortland, Madison, Onondaga, and Oswego Counties in working with utility companies to purchase streetlights to convert to LED and/or to convert utility-owned lighting assets to LED.  The agency will provide cost benefit analyses of the two options and help municipalities identify and apply for funding for LED streetlight conversion projects.

Solarize CNY—April 2016

SolarizeCNY is sponsoring a general education campaign for their 2016 campaign. This campaign will allow customers the opportunity to learn about solar energy for their home or business, and to sign up with one of our partner installers. Additionally, with the advent of Community Solar in New York State, SolarizeCNY will be giving an introduction to this new method of going solar, with the opportunity to participate in a community solar project starting in 2017. This information will be available at the dozen solar fairs that the campaign is sponsoring throughout the fall and winter.

Vision CNY—Regional Partnership for Comprehensive Planning—March 2016

Partially funded through NYSERDA’s Cleaner Greener Communities Program, the CNY RPDB is providing assistance to twelve Central New York municipalities in the inventory, analysis, establishment, and adoption of sustainable land use planning and development tools. Eligible planning partnership initiatives include: development of Municipal Comprehensive Plans, Comprehensive Plan Updates, separate Components of Comprehensive Plans (such as “Greenprint Plans” identifying local conservation land priorities, or Complete Streets or Open Space Plans), New Smart Growth Zoning, and Sustainable Land Use Updates to Local Ordinances. Assistance and outreach to Cayuga, Cortland, Madison, Onondaga and Oswego County included a baseline analysis of planning efforts and regulatory tools, and development of County-wide mapping of Potential Conservation Lands.

CNY My Wind—January 2016

With support from the USDA, the CNY RPDB is preparing a feasibility study for a community wind farm in the Town of Fabius. Community wind projects can be jointly owned by a variety of individuals including local small business owners, farmers, local organizations including schools and universities as well as municipalities. The key feature of community wind is that local community members own and have a significant financial stake in the project beyond just land lease payments and tax revenue. Community wind projects can be any size, ranging from a single turbine to more than one hundred, yet typically serve local communities or consumers. The agency has retained the services of EAPC to collect wind speed and other data using a wind measurement tower that was installed in January 2016. The tower will collect data for at least 12 months, and the data will be used to complete technical and financial modeling for a community wind farm project.

Central New York Regional Recreation and Heritage Plan—January 2016

Funded through NYS Department of State Local Waterfront Revitalization Program development of the CNY Regional Recreation and Heritage Plan is in progress. Mapping for the plan identifies a five-county regionally inter-linked recreational and heritage network linking hiking trails, bikeways, public waterfront access, scenic byways, natural areas, working landscapes, historic sites and heritage areas, rural hamlets, museums, festivals, events and other points of recreational and heritage interest. The plan is concerned with regional natural and cultural resource protection, balanced with development of improved access, connectivity and low impact use, and goals for establishing a regional outdoor recreation and heritage identity and way-finding system to guide future visitors along interlinking routes connecting many of Central New York’s unique and interesting places.

Central New York Regional Planning & Development Board, 100 Clinton Square, Suite 200,  126 North Salina St., Syracuse, NY  13202
phone: (315) 422-8276      fax: (315) 422-9051      mail @ cnyrpdb.org