Economy and Business news

Randy Gorbman / WXXI News

The president of the Upper Mt. Hope Neighborhood Association says it's time to reassess the business plan for College Town.

Dan Hurley's comments come following news last week that Saxby's Coffee has closed. That's the third College Town business to shut its doors in four months. Constantino’s Market closed in February and The Corner Bakery closed in March.

Hurley said he has a meeting tentatively scheduled for next Tuesday with College Town’s leasing agent and representatives from the University of Rochester to talk about what can be done to help.


San Diego's Little Italy district has inspired a local attorney to bring a similar concept to the town of Gates, on a smaller scale.

Silvano Orsi has registered a nonprofit corporation, the Little Italy Neighborhood Association, to seek an initial $500,000 in funding for the project from the Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council. He says that could bring some much-needed redevelopment to the Lyell Avenue/Spencerport Road corridor.

Randy Gorbman / WXXI News

Officials from the City of Rochester and five cities  in Quebec have signed an agreement pledging economic cooperation.

Mayor Lovely Warren, and mayors from cities in Quebec signed the agreement in downtown Rochester Friday as part of an effort to foster economic development and create jobs. Warren notes that New York State already does about $8 billion in trade with Quebec, and this is an effort to further Rochester's involvement in that relationship.

A local agricultural company says it will expand its operations to Webster, creating 100 new jobs. That according to Governor Cuomo, who says that Intergrow Holdings will build two new 25-acre state-of-the-art commercial greenhouses to grow produce year-round for the Northeast market.

The project was highlighted Thursday in Rochester by Lt. Governor Kathy Hochul at a meeting of the Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council, as part of an effort called "Finger Lakes Forward," which is focused on agriculture and food production.

The latest numbers are out on job growth from the NY State Labor Department, and they again show a drop in private sector job growth compared to a year ago for the Rochester area.

In April, the figures down a drop of 1,600 private sector jobs compared to a year ago. That follows on the heels of declines in February and March. It was the worst showing in job growth for April in the various metro areas reported by the state.

State Labor Analyst Tammy Marino doesn't think this survey tells the whole story. She notes that it's based on talking to local business owners.

At its meeting this week, the County of Monroe Industrial Development Agency, or COMIDA, approved around $2.3 million in exemptions for the developers of the Sibley Building  downtown.

Attorney and partner with Winn Development on the project, Gerry DiMarco, says work is underway to have the High Tech Rochester incubator occupy the sixth floor, and the commercial mixed-use portion will include 96 apartment units and space for retail and commercial use.

He says it's important that this project on an iconic building in downtown Rochester is completed.

WASHINGTON (AP)  Factory activity in New York shrank in May after expanding for two months, as manufacturers received fewer orders and shipments fell. 

The Federal Reserve Bank of New York said Monday that its Empire State manufacturing index slumped to minus 9 in May, after reaching 9.6 the previous month. Any reading below zero points to contraction. 

Foodlink's New Community Kitchen

May 11, 2016
Alex Crichton

Foodlink has begun construction on  a new 28-thousand square foot state-of-the-art kitchen, located next to its Mt. Read Blvd distribution center.

Officials gathered there today for a groundbreaking -- actually an apple slicing -- to mark the start of the $4.6 million dollar project.

Board Chair for Foodlink, Matthew Ray, says the new community kitchen will enable Foodlink to triple its output.

"This will be a state-of-the art community-based kitchen.  It'll have anything you can think of that'll provide 12-thousand plus meals a day to children in the community."

The latest Paychex - IHS survey on small business job growth shows continued slow, steady growth. That according to CEO Marty Mucci who says that there is greater stability in the monthly jobs index than at any other time during the past 10 years.

But Mucci does believe small business owners may be a little more cautious to add jobs this year, partly because of the elections.

Gas Prices Continue to Climb

May 2, 2016 K

Gas prices have gone up another seven cents a gallon the past week, according to AAA.

Spokesperson Elizabeth Carey says the average around Rochester is now $2.32 a gallon.

She says the higher price is due to increased demand.

"Because prices were so low, more motorists decided to head out, use that gasoline, take road trips and drive more often.  So drivers have been enjoying those prices, therefore driving more and that increased demand is what's really impacting the prices now," she says.