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The Berkshires

Schumer on revitalizing Schenectady

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Albany/HV: Schumer on revitalizing Schenectady
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Touring the Empire State to help rebuild what's falling down, Senator Charles Schumer stopped in Schenectady to check on its progress and offer an encouraging word. YNN's Erin Vannella was there and tells us more.

SCHENECTADY, N.Y. -- "I remember when I first ran, driving through downtown Schenectady and I see downtown Schenectady today and it is like night and day," said New York Senator Charles Schumer.

With central and upstate redevelopment as his priority, Senator Schumer visited Schenectady to talk progress and future finances.

"We have a whole bunch of tax credits expiring at the end of this year and as part of our negotiations for the fiscal cliff I am going to be fighting very hard to see that the new market tax is extended," said Schumer.

It's one of two federal incentives the electric city could benefit from should they be renewed before the 31st. The new markets tax credit returns $390,000 for every million invested. The federal historic tax credit includes compensation for green construction.

"It's exciting and things are happening," said Schenectady Mayor Gary McCarthy. "There's a real interest in Schenectady."

City officials show off work already being done at the Metroplex building and soon-to-be Mexican Radio down the street. But momentum has to continue they said, adding to the list, the old Foster Hotel, the Alco site and former Robinson Furniture property on lower State Street.

"If you drive around today, you have to look for a parking space," said McCarthy. "Eight years ago, you didn't have to. We've got a real community. There's real economic activity here and it's growing."

Still, Schumer says solving the fiscal cliff has to come first. Then he and others can push to make Capital Region cities the fed's priority, too.

"This is a great opportunity and if we can pass these credits, I think we'll be able to say without equivocation that while downtown Schenectady is doing better than ever, the best is yet to come," said Schumer.

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