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Gillibrand outlines entrepreneurship agenda

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U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand says about 800,000 New Yorkers are still unemployed, and that her five-point plan could help fix that.


U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand is calling for legislation and federal funding for small businesses. The Democratic Senator says the proposed measures would ultimately help high-tech firms create more jobs.

Gillibrand outlined her five-point plan on a conference call with reporters Tuesday.

Her "entrepreneurship agenda" includes:

  • Federal funding for business incubators, science parks and "cluster-based economic development strategies."
  • Tax-free savings for entrepreneurs investing in their own businesses.
  • Tax credits for private investors backing high-tech startups.

Gillibrand says focusing federal dollars on high-tech industries will help New York see results.
"The fastest growing industries in New York state are high-tech, biotech, nanotech, energy technology and defense manufacturing," says Gillibrand. She says those fast-growing sectors are where New York is likely to see growth.

Gillibrand admits that the proposed tax credits and grants would cost hundreds of millions of dollars. For just the proposal to grow American science parks, Gillibrand says she's urging Senate leaders to include $107 million in the FY2012 budget.

Overall, Gillibrand says the investments are worth it - and that if it were up to her, she knows exactly where the funding would come from.

"I would very, very eagerly trade the $8 billion a year that we subsidize the oil companies with for any one of these ideas," Gillibrand said. "[That] would more than cover it."

WXXI/Finger Lakes reporter for the Innovation Trail.
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