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  • Rensselaer County Tourism Website

    Wednesday, 06 July 2016

    The new Rensselaer County Tourism website will be here soon! Only tourism related companies and venues will be added to the website. Please complete the form to make sure your information is up to date.  Photos will need to be e-mailed separately (please put venue/attraction name in subject line) to tourism@rensco.com.

    Fill out the form today!

  • Chamber Ambassadors Recognized

    Tuesday, 28 June 2016

    The Rensselaer County Regional Chamber of Commerce recently recognized two of its 22 ericaAmbassador’s for outstanding performance. Erica Hebler, AVP branch officer for Berkshire Bank, and Sarah Caciola, office manager at Pattison, Sampson, Ginsberg & Griffin were thanked for their efforts at the June Ambassador meeting and given gift cards to Muddaddy Flats.

    The Ambassador committee assists the Chamber staff in outreach to members. The committee calls and visits members to make sure we have accurate information on the members and to share information on member benefits. In addition the committee assists at our Networking Plus Luncheons and helps welcome new members at other programs.SarahC

    Erica is known not only for calling members, but she often follows up on those calls with personal notes inviting members to upcoming events. She is also available to acclimate new members, she has brought guests to Chamber events to help grow the Chamber’s member base and attends ribbon cuttings for new businesses. Sarah has made contacts with many members, attended ribbon cuttings, and has volunteered as we needed.

    “The Rensselaer County Regional Chamber is a staple in my success,” said Erica. “Working with the Ambassador committee you know first-hand the programs being offered and in turn can help other businesses.”

    Sarah agreed that the Chamber and Ambassador committee have been beneficial. “ The Rensselaer County Regional Chamber of Commerce has been an essential part of my success since joining the Pattison Sampson law firm two years ago,” she said. “My decision to join the Ambassador committee is my way of giving back to the Chamber. Our membership in the Chamber and my commitment to the Ambassador committee has helped me to grow professionally and has allowed me to develop strong relationships with other business professionals in the area.”

    For more information on the Ambassador committee contact Maureen McGuinness, membership manager, at mmcguinness@renscochamber.com or 687-1244  

  • Federal & New York State Historic Preservation Tax Credits

    Monday, 13 June 2016

    historic preservation tax credit workshop 2016 Final Draft 2


    Click here for more information!

  • Linium Index of High-Tech Hiring Survey

    Wednesday, 08 June 2016


    Add your voice to an assessment of the Capital Region's technology job market by taking the Summer 2016 Linium Index of High-Tech Hiring. 

    Linium's quarterly survey is open to both high tech and traditional companies with technology-based positions. The survey will track expectations for tech job growth, which positions are in greatest demand and the opportunities and obstacles in finding quality employees - all of which is informed by your knowledge and experience. 

    Click here to take the online Linium Index survey

    As always, the confidential survey takes 90 seconds or less to complete. Responses will be accepted through next Thursday, June 16, and we'll be reporting results just in time to assist with your summer hiring needs.

    We appreciate your interest, and look forward to your participation!

    Read the results of the Spring 2016 Linium Index of High-Tech Hiring.


  • Governor Cuomo Announces Completion of Patroon Island Bridge Rehabilitation Project

    Wednesday, 01 June 2016

    Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced the completion of the $148 million project to rehabilitate the Patroon Island Bridge which carries I-90 over the Hudson River between Rensselaer and Albany. When construction began in 2013, it was one of the largest New York State Department of Transportation projects in upstate New York. 

    "The Patroon Island Bridge is a key part of this state's transportation infrastructure, as well as an economic driver, that is depended upon by millions of New Yorkers, travelers and businesses from the Capital Region and beyond," Governor Cuomo said. "These critical repairs will help ensure its viability for years to come." 

    The project involved rehabilitating the Patroon Island Bridge and all the ramps comprising the I-90 interchange with I-787 at the western end of the bridge. Work included replacing the bridge decks and bearings, repairing steel, painting the bridges, and replacing and repairing the substructures of the interchange. Work also included building new concrete piers to support the interchange ramps, as well as installing new traffic monitoring systems. New concrete barriers were installed on and between the bridges. Pre-cast concrete deck panels were used to speed construction. 

    The project's staging area located in part of the city of Albany's Corning Preserve has been restored and landscaping was performed throughout the project limits.

    New York State Department of Transportation Commissioner Matthew J. Driscoll said,"Governor Cuomo knows that a safe, efficient and reliable transportation system is the key to economic growth. The Patroon Island Bridge is of vital importance not only for daily Capital Region commuters, but also for tourists, truckers and businesspeople traveling from downstate and Massachusetts to Albany and points beyond along the I-90 corridor."

    Work was structured to have the least amount of impact on traffic as possible as part of the Drivers First initiative developed by Governor Cuomo. The project plans went through a rigorous review to ensure that there were minimal impacts on highway users. 

    The project was funded through the NY Works program, which focuses on improving the condition of bridges from fair condition to good condition in order to extend their service life. This major rehabilitation will better preserve the heavily traveled bridge and ensure safety and mobility for decades.

    At its highest point, the roadway of the Patroon Island Bridge is 106 feet over the Hudson River. The bridge carries an average of 70,000 motor vehicles per day, with an average of 84,000 vehicles daily using the I-90 and I-787 interchange.

    Congressman Paul Tonko said, "Capital Region roads are some of the most highly-trafficked in the state, and this project enhances the local infrastructure that gets New Yorkers to school, work, church, or a recreational destination. I applaud the quality work done over the years by DOT workers to make our commutes smoother and safer – and my thanks go out to Governor Cuomo for continued recognition of the infrastructure challenges we face here in the Capital Region. In Washington, I will continue to support ambitious yet responsible budgets that invest in the American worker as well as our nation’s infrastructure – and give our states the tools they need to repair and replace our roads and bridges."

    Senator Neil Breslin said, "The Patroon Island Bridge is a critical part of the Capital Region's infrastructure. Ensuring its structural integrity for the tens of thousands of vehicles and motorists who use it every day is of the utmost importance. I applaud Governor Cuomo and Commissioner Driscoll for recognizing the importance of a safe infrastructure and the vital role it plays it moving our economy forward."

    Assemblyman John McDonald said, "I am pleased to see the completion of this critical project in the Capital Region that transports up to 70,000 vehicles a day. I recall several years ago as the former Chairman of the Capital District Transportation Committee a discussion of a total replacement of this bridge, which ran estimates into the several hundreds of millions of dollars and significant impact on the environment and traffic patterns that would have been extremely disruptive. Thanks to the leadership of Governor Cuomo and the NYSDOT, we instead focused on a cost effective repair project that had limited disruption to the traveling public and has left us with a bridge that will last us generations to come."

    Albany County Executive Daniel P. McCoy said, "The Patroon Island Bridge is a critical roadway for commuters traveling for business and pleasure to and from Albany County. One of the biggest challenges the rehabilitation project was dealing with was how to keep traffic moving with an average 70,000 vehicles traveling over the bridge each day and even more using the I-90 and I-787 exchanges. The completion of the work ensures drivers will be safe and the life of the bridge extended."

    Rensselaer County Executive Kathleen Jimino said, "Maintaining and improving our infrastructure is vital to the safety of our residents and visitors as well as essential to attracting new businesses and the jobs that are vital to our local economy. The completion of this project ensures safe and efficient travel on this vital roadway and I want to commend the state for making this investment as well as for their efforts to minimize the impact this project would have on motorists during construction."

    Albany City Mayor Kathy Sheehan said, "The rehabilitation of the Patroon Island Bridge is a welcome and long-awaited project. The bridge is an important gateway into Albany, safely and conveniently bringing people to and from our Capital City, connecting the Capital Region and helping boost our local economy. Thank you to Governor Cuomo, Commissioner Driscoll and the Department of Transportation for investing in our great city and for making this important project happen."

    Capital Region Chamber CEO Mark Eagan said, "I commend Governor Cuomo for accelerating major infrastructure projects like the Patroon Island Bridge rehabilitation in order to maintain vital access between Rensselaer and Albany counties. A critical element to keeping the Capital Region’s dynamic economy moving is to ensure this essential Hudson River crossing is available not only for our many visitors, but for the businesses that rely on Interstate 90 as a key shipping corridor."

  • Fair Labor Standards Act Final Rule Released

    Monday, 23 May 2016

    From The Business Council of New York State, Inc.

    The US Department of Labor (DOL) released the final rule regarding the salary level for overtime exemptions.  The rule takes effect December 1, 2016. Information from the Wage and Hours Division of the DOL can be found here.

    As you know, the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) requires that most employees in the United States be paid at least the federal minimum wage for all hours worked and overtime pay at time and one-half the regular rate of pay for all hours worked over 40 hours in a workweek. However, Section 13(a)(1) of the FLSA provides an exemption from both minimum wage and overtime pay for employees employed as bona fide executive, administrative, professional, outside salesand certain computer employees.

    To qualify for exemption, employees generally must pass certain tests regarding their job duties and be paid on a salary basis, and at a salary levelof not less than $455 per week. Job titles do not determine exempt status. In order for an employee to be exempt from the overtime provisions of the law, the employee must pass all three tests. (Note: NYS has its own salary level requirements for executive and administrative professionals. That level is currently $675 per week effective 12/31/2015.)

    Key provisions of the new rule are:

    1. Sets the standard salary level at the 40th percentile of earnings of full-time salaried workers in the lowest-wage Census Region, currently the South. This means the new salary level effective December 1, 2016 will be $913 per week; or $47,476 per year;
    2. Sets the total annual compensation requirement for highly compensated employees (HCE)subject to a minimal duties test to the annual equivalent of the 90th percentile of full-time salaried workers nationally ($134,004); and
    3. Establishes a mechanism for automatically updating the salary and compensation levels every three years to maintain the levels at the above percentiles and to ensure that they continue to provide useful and effective tests for exemption.

    Additionally, the Final Rule amends the salary basis test to allow employers to use nondiscretionary bonuses and incentive payments (including commissions) to satisfy up to 10 percent of the new standard salary level.
    The effective date of the final rule is December 1, 2016. The initial increases to the standard salary level (from $455 to $913 per week) and HCE total annual compensation requirement (from $100,000 to $134,004 per year) will be effective on that date. Future automatic updates to those thresholds will occur every three years, beginning on January 1, 2020.

    In light of the new final rule, employers need to review all the positions in their organization currently considered “exempt” and paid less than the new salary lever of $913 per week/$47,476 per year. Employers can either increase an exempt worker’s salary so the worker remains exempt, or reclassify him or her as nonexempt.

    In response to the proposed rule, The Protecting Worker Advancement and Opportunity Act was introduced March 17th by Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., and Rep. Tim Walberg, R-Mich. The bill would require the Department of Labor to hold off on the regulation until it conducts an economic analysis on the rule’s impact on small businesses, nonprofit organizations and public employees. Obviously, any action by Congress would require President Obama’s signature.

    As part of the next Business Council Labor/Human Resources webinar, we will discuss the new rule and compliance strategies. The next webinar is scheduled for Wednesday, June 29th at 11:00 a.m. Information and on-line registration for this webinar can be found here.

  • Troy BID For Rent Event

    Thursday, 19 May 2016

    For Rent Event Postcard 1

    2016 For Rent Map

     Click here to download the Property Listings and the Property Map (.pdf)

    Tour Stop #1 :: 33 2nd Street :: Block E7 :: Call (518) 587-7600 for more information

    • Restaurant Space :: 2,567 SF, $13 PSF + NNN, Basement Storage Available
    • Office Space 1 :: 677 SF, $12 PSF + NNN
    • Office Space 2 :: 453 SF, $12 PSF + NNN
    • Residential :: Granite counter tops, hardwood and tile flooring, stainless steel appliances, in unit washer and dryer, elevator, historic features, trash and recycling rooms on each floor, one 24-hour parking pass available per unit, additional 24-hour garage parking $65/mo.

    Tour Walk By :: 65 3rd Street :: Block D8 :: The Conservatory

    Contact for appointment www.TheConservatoryTroy.com or call Deane at (518) 461-5076

    • Apartment 202 :: 2,244 SF, 12 Ft Ceilings, 8 Ft windows facing east toward RPI, real hardwood floors, gourmet kitchen with huge granite breakfast bar, 2 bedrooms, 2.5 bath, den/office, laundry room, large storage closet and more. Reserved parking in basement garage included. Available June 15.
    • Apartment 401:: 1,238 SF, perched high on the 4th floor with wonderful views of RPI, Prospect Park and South Troy. In addition to a large, open living room/kitchen/dining area facing east, it has a master bedroom suite with walk-in closet, additional traditional closet and large bathroom with double sinks; guest room with second full bath; and separate utility / laundry room. Reserved parking in basement garage included. Available June 15th.

    Tour Stop #2 :: 30 3rd Street :: Block D7 :: Quakenbush Building :: Bryce Properties (518) 274-7777

    • Tech Valley Center of Gravity (Tour of Working Space)
    • Suite 110 :: Quakenbush Building :: 498 SF off the elevator lobby on the first floor. Asking $664/month, includes heat and electrical with normal usage.
    • Suite 370 :: CALL FOR AN APPOINTMENT :: Third-floor, 333 SF space, south side of bldg., window 8’ off floor. Asking $444.00/month, includes heat and electric. 

    Tour Walk By

    West Side Management / Bonacio Construction To make an appointment call 518.587.7600 ext. 3. Materials located at 33 2nd Street

    256 Broadway :: Block D7 :: The Keenan

    • Residential (NO CURRENT AVAILABILITY) :: Granite counter tops, hardwood and tile flooring, stainless steel appliances, in unit washer and dryer, high ceilings, large historic windows, trash and recycling on each floor, parking nights and weekends, 24-hour garage parking for $65/mo. Commercial tenants in building: Whistling Tea Kettle House and Café, Placid Baker, The Shoppe, Kathleen’s Fiber Arts, The Greek House

    200 Broadway :: Block E7 :: Hendrick Hudson Building

    • Commercial Availability:: 1,038 – 2,228 SF, $10 - $13 SF + NNN

    270 River Street :: Block D6 :: The River Triangle

    • 2nd Floor Office :: 620 SF, $10 PSF + NNN
    • Residential Availability :: Granite counter tops, hardwood and tile flooring, stainless steel appliances, in unit washer and dryer, select units offer views of the Hudson River and vaulted ceilings, 2nd floor common area/patio, trash and recycling rooms on each floor, parking nights and weekends, additional 24-hour garage parking $65/mo. Commercial tenants in building: Canvas Corks and Forks Paint and Sip, Funcycled Furniture Restoration, Artcentric Antiques, JJ Young Staffing Agency, Community Massage and Healing Arts, The Troy Record, Cytogel Pharma, Laura Darling Law, Bright Hub, Troy Hand and Upper Extremity Therapy

    279 River:: Block D6 :: The Dauchy

    • Commercial Availability :: 1576 SF, $12 PSF + NNN
    • Residential Availability: Granite counter tops, hardwood and tile flooring, stainless steel appliances, in unit washer and dryer, select units with vaulted ceilings and exposed brick, trash and recycling rooms on each floor, parking nights and weekends, additional 24-hour garage parking for $65/mo. Commercial tenants in building: Psychedelicatessen Bagels and Café, 3t Architects.

    285 River Street :: Block D6 :: The American Theater Building

    • 5,800 SF, $8 PSF + NNN

    Tour Stop #3 :: 48 4th Street :: Block C6 :: Hornby Zeller Properties, LLC

    • Commercial Office Space :: 1,116 SF, $8 PSF, Furnishings available without additional cost. Utilities allocated by SF. Fit up allowance available. 1, 3, or 5-year lease options.
    • Commercial Office Space :: 1,246 SF, $8 PSF, Street Level, Furnishings available without additional cost. Utilities allocated by SF. Fit up allowance available. 1, 3, or 5-year lease options.

    Tour Stop #4 :: 90 4th Street :: Block C7 :: Proctor’s Building :: Columbia Development

    Enter through the double doors with the Rensselaer County Chamber logo. Please call Brandon if you arrive and the door is locked, he will come let you in. (518) 944-0695

    • 3rd Floor :: 1,900 SF, Commercial Office and Retail, For Lease through Columbia Development

    Tour Stop #5

    1521 6th Ave :: Block B9 :: City Station West :: The United Group

    • Unit #2 :: 1624 SF, Unit #3 :: 1553 SF, Unit #4 :: 2284 SF, Unit #7 :: 2421 SF    

    1520 6th Ave :: Block B9 :: City Station East :: The United Group

    • Unit # 8 :: 3844 SF, Unit # 9 :: 1956 SF, Unit #10 :: 2873 SF, Unit # 12 :: 1746 SF

    Tour Stop #6 :: 501 Broadway :: Block C7 :: Troy Record Building :: The Rosenblum Companies

    Large format renderings, elevations and plans for display located on site

    • +/- 51,000 SF pre renovation, Street Level, For Lease
    • +/- 146,400 SF post-renovation, Street Level, For Lease
    • +/- 8,000 SF retail / restaurant, Street Level, For Lease

    Tour Stop #7 :: 2001 5th Ave ::Block B/C5 :: Berkshire Hathaway Blake Realtors

    • Commercial Property :: 518.464.0870 ext. 2211 for appointments :: $15.50SF + NNN :: Three story medical plaza building with first floor occupied and paying rent. Second and third floors are ready for owner-occupant or re-occupancy for medical or other tenants. New rubber roof, reconditioned AC and parking. Located in emerging neighborhood of historic Downtown Troy. Near Green Island Bridge, access to I-787, RPI, Samaritan Hospital and all that downtown has to offer.

    Tour Stop #8 :: 24 4th Street :: Block C5 :: Troy Innovation Garage

    • Co-working spaces :: The Troy Innovation Garage is an entrepreneurial ecosystem that includes co-working space, studio space, and private offices. Gramercy Communications will be the anchor tenant in the space, occupying 4,000 square feet of space in the 14,000 square-foot building. The Garage will have 75 co-working seats, 12 private suites that can accommodate companies of 1-5 people, as well. There are a variety of meeting and conference rooms that will be available to members too!

    Available for Walk-ins :: 16 First Street :: Block E7 :: Sequence Development

    • Commercial Retail / Office (Previously a Clothing Store) :: 1,200 SF, For Lease at $13.00 per ft ($1,300 per month) newly renovated, 14’ ceilings, hardwood floors, exposed brick, rustic industrial.


  • Troy Bicentennial Celebration

    Wednesday, 13 April 2016

    Mayor Patrick Madden, Troy Cultural Alliance Announce Start of Troy Bicentennial Celebration, Release Details of Special Events

    Mayor Patrick Madden today joined members of the Troy Cultural Alliance (TCA), city and state elected officials, and community and neighborhood representatives for a press conference at the Rensselaer County Historical Society to announce the start of City of Troy’s Bicentennial Celebration, commemorating 200 years of Collar City history since the city’s official incorporation on April 12, 1816. The City of Troy has partnered with the newly formed Troy Cultural Alliance to connect the city’s many diverse cultural organizations, promote Troy as a regional destination and to assist the City of Troy in coordinating events designed to celebrate the city’s Bicentennial.

    “The City of Troy is very excited about our partnership with the Troy Cultural Alliance to celebrate our city’s Bicentennial this year” said Mayor Patrick Madden. “We look forward to collaborating with the TCA on the many special events that will highlight Troy’s Bicentennial Celebration throughout 2016 to promote our city’s rich history and heritage.”

    “The Troy Cultural Alliance is proud to partner with the City of Troy to celebrate the Bicentennial.” says Jon Elbaum, Executive Director of the Troy Savings Bank Music Hall and TCA Chair. “Our mission to promote Troy as a cultural destination aligns with supporting the events surrounding this Bicentennial and will showcase the effects 200 years of cultural diversity and richness has had on our community.”

    Other participating arts and cultural organizations concur. Elizabeth Reiss, CEO of The Arts Center of the Capital Region, says “Bicentennials provide a forum for people of all ages to better understand their community – what it means to live, work and experience Troy. At the Arts Center our goal is to help people connect with Troy’s creative spirit through engaging, hands-on programs. We’ve planned three free weekend programs to ensure everyone can celebrate Troy.”

    To that end, the Rensselaer County Historical Society has planned many events in observance of this historic milestone. “The Rensselaer County Historical Society is proud to help the City of Troy celebrate its rich history during this Bicentennial year. Troy was a 19th century industrial revolution leader and in the 21st century is a nano-technology leader. With focus on highlights of its early years till present days, all residents and neighbors of Troy can join in a grand year-long celebration of Troy’s diverse history.” says Karin Krasevac-Lenz, RCHS’s Executive Director.

    Troy’s culturally broad and diverse patchwork of neighborhoods will also have an opportunity to take part in this year’s Bicentennial Celebration. The city will be offering grant funding to neighborhood groups for community-focused Bicentennial events organized throughout the city to encourage collaboration among neighborhoods and organizations to embrace their unique attributes and history. Additional information on this neighborhood initiative will be announced by the Mayor’s Office at a later date.

    A full list of official Bicentennial Celebration events can be seen below. More events will be announced in the coming months.

    The Arts Center of the Capital Region
    265 River Street, Troy, 518-273-0552, artscenteronline.org
    Collar City Cool - April 17, 2016, 1:30-3:30 FREE
    Collars are once again being made by in Troy--this time by artists of all ages at the Arts Center!
    Use fabrics, felts, papers and cardboards and LED lights to make a modern-day collar for yourself, kids or even a favorite pet! Pre-registration at www.artscenteronline.org
    Troy Voices: Then and Now - September 23-25, 2016
    Performance Debut and Reception - Friday, September 23, 6PM, FREE, Arts Center of the Capital Region. Performance and Introduction to the Archives and Collections - Sunday, September 25, 1PM, FREE, the Rensselaer County Historic Society

    The Arts Center of the Capital Region and the Rensselaer County Historical Society collaborate on this thoughtful investigation into the characters who built Troy. The Rensselaer County Historic Society will open its archives to eight writers, theater artists or performance artists (selected through an open call) to learn about the historic figures who made Troy what it is today. These artists will then use that inspiration to write monologues and weave together the history and people of Troy into new voices. The resulting works will culminated in staged performances at the Arts Center and at the Historic Society.

    Legends of Troy - Saturday, September 24, 12 PM-5 PM FREE
    From the legend of Diamond Rock to the tragic tale of Elsie Vaughn and the Mohawk warrior Dekanisora, Troy history is charged with stories bigger than life! Join us for day-long creative workshops that rediscover and celebrate legends of Troy.

    Making Troy - Sunday, November 6, 2016, 12-5 PM
    The Arts Center of the Capital Region, the Rensselaer County Historic Society and the Center of Gravity collaborate for a day-long, hands-on creative experience building Troy’s past, present and future. Enjoy all three sites for day long workshops on metal casting, planning Troy’s future, building water wheels and making historic letterpress documents. Troy was, and always will be a city of makers. Come enjoy making Troy once again.

    Unveiling of the Col. Albert Pawling Memorial Statue in Pawling Park
    • When: 2pm – 4pm, Friday, April 15th
    • Where: Pawling Park, 560 Congress Street, Troy
    • What: The Unveiling & Dedication Col. Albert Pawling Memorial Statue
    The statue celebrates the Bicentennial of Troy's incorporation as a city and the memory of a man who served as Troy's first mayor, Rensselaer County's first Sheriff and a Colonel in the American Revolution, serving as Aide-de-Camp on the staff of General George Washington. The date, April 15th, also marks the 200th year to the day when Col. Pawling was appointed the first Mayor of Troy. The public is welcome to attend the unveiling for free, but seating is limited. The event will begin at 2pm. The event's program will have several speakers, including Troy Mayor Patrick Madden, Rensselaer County Sheriff Patrick Russo, and Brig. Gen. Raymond Shields of the New York State National Guard.

    April 15th will also include a Wreath & Flag Raising Ceremony at Col. Pawling's gravesite in Old Mt. Ida Cemetery from 11am – 12pm and the Illumination of the Col. Albert Pawling Memorial Statue at 8pm. If you wish to RSVP to the unveiling, please contact Adam Sanzone at 518-867-5047 or email rsvp@pawlingstatue.org.

    Rensselaer County Historical Society

    57 Second St. Open from noon to 5 p.m. Thursday thru Saturday (518) 272-7232, rchsonline.org

    Visions of Troy: 200 Years a City, 1816-2016 - Now through December 17, 2016. “Visions of Troy: 200 Years A City” kicked-off the bicentennial celebration of Troy’s establishment as a city in 1816. The exhibit captures Troy’s history in 50-year increments with the years 1816, 1866, 1916, 1966 and 2016 as touch points. Troy has been in the heart of U.S. history from giving the country Samuel Wilson as the model for Uncle Sam through the Industrial Revolution, when it was one of the nation’s richest communities, to the present. The exhibit also features the restored and lit iconic neon signs from the former South End Tavern! Watch for news of changing exhibits each quarter in our Robison Family Meeting Room gallery!

    May and June History Walks

    History walks are held Saturdays in May, June, September and October. Led by RCHS staff, each tour has a different theme. Tours leave promptly at 10:30 am from the Farmer’s Market Information Booth. $5 per person, free for RCHS members. No Reservation required. Please join us! The Air Was Full Of Smoke And Cinders: Troy’s Great Fire of 1862 - Saturday, May 7, 2016 On May 10, 1862, fire erupted on a bridge crossing the Hudson River and within hours, more than 500 buildings in the city were destroyed. Walk back into history as you retrace the progress of the “Great Fire” and see the disaster’s impact. Explore Centennial Troy - Saturday, May 14, 2016 Explore the last century of Troy’s history, through the lens of the built environment that is Troy today. We will explore Troy’s downtown historic district using historic photos that capture the city at key moments throughout its history. This tour is in conjunction with the Bicentennial exhibit Visions of Troy: 200 Years A City: 1816-2016. On view now at RCHS through December 19th, 2016. Washington Park - Saturday, May 21, 2016 Explore one of Troy’s most iconic neighborhoods, Washington Park. NOTE: This tour only will meet at the corner of Second and Washington Street in Troy at 10:30 a.m. 

    Events for Troy’s Flag Day Parade, Sunday, June 12:
    Finding Troy - Sunday, June 12, 10 AM-5 PM at the Arts Center of the Capital Region
    Before, during or after Troy’s fabulous Flag Day Parade join in on a city wide geocaching experience. Designed to show you more about Troy than you think you know, the search will make learning about Troy’s buildings, landmarks, streets and parks fun for the whole family. Brought to you by the Troy Cultural Alliance!

    Troy’s 49th Flag Day Parade! - June 12, 2016
    1 p.m. Start, arrive early for best viewing spots!
    Parade Route along 4th Street

  • Do you have GOOD NEWS to share with the Chamber?

    Tuesday, 08 March 2016

    Do you know of a business or nonprofit success story? Is it you? The Chamber is seeking nominees for the 2016 "Good News Rensselaer County" awards. Co-hosted by the Chamber and Rensselaer County, this event celebrates businesses, nonprofits and community organizations who make a significant impact on our area's economy and quality of life. Good News awards spotlight companies making a name for themselves at home, in our region, in New York State and, in some cases, in the global marketplace. Recipients are publicly honored during an awards luncheon in the fall.

    To nominate a candidate please contact the Chamber's Director of Member Engagement & Business Development Kate Ollier at kollier@renscochamber.com. We look forward to hearing from you!

    Download the Good News nomination form here!

  • Governor Cuomo Announces Launch of Largest Healthcare-Based Solar Project in New York

    Wednesday, 10 February 2016

    $2 Million in State Support for 21-Acre Solar Project to Offset Energy Use for St. Peter’s Health Partners and Center for Disability Services

    Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the largest state-supported solar project for healthcare organizations in New York. The project will provide two significant health services providers in Albany – St. Peter's Health Partners and the Center for Disability Services – with clean power and will save each facility $50,000 annually. The funding will help support the Governor’s Clean Energy Standard to meet 50 percent of our electricity needs with renewable resources by 2030 and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. 

    "This project represents a major step forward in growing the clean energy economy both here in the Capital Region and across New York," Governor Cuomo said. "By incentivizing the healthcare industry to utilize greener forms of energy like solar, we are not only helping shrink the carbon footprint of these organizations, but also helping reduce their bottom line so they operate more efficiently. Now, they will be able to direct even more resources to those who need them the most—the patients."

    The 21-acre solar project, which will contain about 16,000 solar panels, will be located on vacant land in the Town of Greenport, Columbia County. The solar-generated power will offset about 10 percent of power consumed by St. Peter's Health Partners' St. Peter’s Hospital and the Center for Disability Services. 

    The 5.3 megawatt project will provide the same amount of power each year as would be needed for 850 average-sized homes and will reduce greenhouse gases by almost 2,000 tons annually, equivalent to taking about 375 cars off the road. Construction has begun, and the system is expected to be operating in August 2016.

    Richard Kauffman, Chairman of Energy and Finance for New York, said, "As anchors in our communities, large health service providers are core to helping our communities transition to a clean energy economy. Large solar projects like this support Governor Cuomo’s Reforming the Energy Vision by increasing the deployment of renewable energy technology in New York, making the state cleaner while bringing us closer to meeting our ambitious clean energy goals."

    Total investment in the project is approximately $12 million, including $2 million from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority through NY-Sun, a $1 billion initiative to advance the scale-up of solar and move the state closer to a sustainable, self-sufficient solar industry. NY-Sun is a portfolio of programs, including Affordable Solar to low- to moderate-income residents participate in solar, Shared Solar for consumers unable to put solar on their roof, K-solar for schools and Solarize campaigns for neighborhoods. Additional support for the project was provided through tax exemptions granted by the Columbia County Industrial Development Agency.

    The solar project advances the Governor's Reforming the Energy Vision strategy to build a clean, resilient and affordable energy system for all New Yorkers, and continues the State’s robust growth in solar energy, which increased more than 300 percent from 2011 to 2014, twice the rate of U.S. solar growth overall. The Governor has committed to bringing solar to 150,000 homes and business and to installing clean, renewable energy at every SUNY Campus by 2020. 

    NYSERDA President and CEO John B. Rhodes said, "This investment in renewable energy advances Governor Cuomo’s energy strategy. New York State continues to see its solar resources grow at some of the fastest rates in the nation, improving the State's energy system and adding private investment and jobs."

    Albany-based renewable energy firm Sunstream Hudson I LLC is developing and operating the project for St. Peter's Health Partners, and Sunstream Hudson II LLC for the Center for Disability Services. Baltimore-based MMA Energy Capital and Buffalo-basedM&T Bank are providing financing. Both St. Peter's Health Partners and the Center for Disability Services have signed power purchase agreements with Sunstream Hudson, which will deliver power generated by the solar farm to National Grid. In turn, National Grid will provide renewable energy credits to St. Peter's Health Partners and the Center for Disability Services to offset their electricity usage.

    The new solar initiative is one of several projects at St. Peter's Health Partners aimed at boosting sustainability and reducing the organization’s impact on the environment. At St. Peter's Hospital, a hybrid chiller system was installed with support from NYSERDA to streamline the facility’s natural gas and electricity consumption. Other projects include using solar energy to heat domestic hot water, using bio-based and certified green cleaning materials, and serving sustainable seafood and locally grown produce whenever possible. Looking ahead, St. Peter's Health Partners plans to refine its waste stream processes and expand its recycling programs.

    St. Peter's Health Partners President and Chief Executive Officer James K. Reed, M.D., said, "The mission of St. Peter’s Health Partners is to be a compassionate, transforming, and healing presence in the communities we serve. Clearly embedded in this mission is the responsibility to be a thoughtful steward of the natural resources entrusted to our care. Investing in renewable energy such as solar power and reducing the carbon footprint of St. Peter's Hospital is a way for us to promote sustainability and be faithful to who we say we are."

    Alan Krafchin, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Center for Disability Services, said: “When this system is placed in service, approximately 10 percent of the Center’s electricity usage will be derived from clean, renewable solar power. We are very pleased Sunstream Partners was able to make the financial model for solar technology work for us. This will enable future investment in energy-efficiency projects at our facilities throughout the community.”

    New York State Senator Neil Breslin said, "I applaud both St. Peter's Health Partners and the Center for Disability Services for demonstrating their commitment to the use of renewable energy. With Governor Cuomo's recent announcement of the state's new Clean Energy Standard requiring that half of the state's electricity come from renewable sources, it is projects like these that will help us reach those laudable goals."

    New York State Senator Kathy Marchione said, "The promise of clean, affordable and renewable solar energy is being realized with today’s announcement. This clean power project is terrific news and will contribute to New York State's continued growth as a national leader in building the cleaner, greener, smarter energy sources and economy of tomorrow that we need today. I appreciate Governor Cuomo's continued leadership in this critical area and for making this investment and project a reality. We can have a cleaner, healthier environment and a stronger economy, both of which benefit all New Yorkers." 

    New York State Assemblymember Patricia Fahy said, "Terrific news that two of our major health service providers in the Capital Region will benefit from the Governor’s new Clean Energy Standard, providing both savings on their energy bill and addressing climate change. This is precisely the sort of technological creativity, collaboration and investment that inspires both our business and residential neighbors by placing locally produced power at the core of New York’s energy system."

    NYS Assemblymember Didi Barrett said, "This investment in renewable energy truly demonstrates the positive impact Reforming the Energy Vision is having in districts like mine across this state. Solar projects like this are a win-win-win -- they promote sustainability, reduce carbon footprints, and create local jobs." 

    Interim President and CEO of Columbia Economic Development Corporation F. Michael Tucker said, "This project supports the promotion of solar energy, an important part of New York State’s NY-Sun solar energy initiative, confirms our support of regional businesses in line with the objectives of the Capital Region Economic Development Council, and lessens the impact of environmental pollution." 

    St Peter’s Hospital is a not-for-profit community tertiary hospital with 442 beds, more than 900 staff physicians and nearly 6,000 employees. The Center for Disability Services is a non-profit health and human services organization that provides programs and services for over 12,000 individuals of all ages with disabilities and chronic medical conditions, and employs 2,700 staff.

    About Reforming the Energy Vision
    Reforming the Energy Vision (REV) is New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s strategy to build a clean, resilient and affordable energy system for all New Yorkers. REV is transforming New York’s energy policy with new state-wide initiatives and regulatory reforms. REV will grow the state’s clean energy economy, support innovation, ensure grid resilience, mobilize private capital, create new jobs, and increase choice and affordability for energy consumers. REV places clean, locally produced power at the very core of New York’s energy system. This protects the environment and supports the State’s goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40% while generating 50% of its electricity from renewable energy sources by 2030. Successful initiatives already launched as part of REV include NY-Sun, NY Green Bank, NY Prize, K-Solar, and a commitment to improve energy affordability for low-income communities. To learn more about REV, visithttp://www.ny.gov/REV4NY and follow us @REV4NY.


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