Written by Christy Hinko Friday, 08 April 2011 00:00
Senator Charles Fuschillo, Jr. and Assemblyman Robert Sweeney announced the passage of legislation they authored to expand the Broad Hollow Bioscience Park (BHBP) at Farmingdale State College on Tuesday, March 22.
The bill is expected to create hundreds of jobs on Long Island. The legislation (S.3536/A.5664) will allow Farmingdale State College to enter into lease agreements to expand BHBP.
“The Broad Hollow Bioscience Park is a key component of Long Island’s economic engine. It has helped build up Long Island’s biotech industry, created jobs, and provided educational opportunities to students. At a time when over 116,000 Long Islanders are unemployed, this is a measure that would lead to hundreds of new jobs for local residents and tens of millions of dollars in new revenue for our economy. We need this bill to become law, and I urge Governor Cuomo to sign it,” said Fuschillo.
The proposed expansion would create a total of 787 direct and indirect jobs and an annual payroll of approximately $50 million for the region.
“This legislation removes a serious obstacle that had hindered the facility’s ability to grow and compete in today’s economy; showing what can and should be accomplished when businesses and government work together to promote economic development,” said Assemblyman Jim Conte. “Creating and preserving well-paying local jobs is the key to a successful economic recovery, and I am pleased that the Legislature moved swiftly to pass legislation that will enable the growth of our region’s economy, while giving private industry the freedom they need to create jobs.”
BHBP is a biotechnology research park developed on the campus of Farmingdale State College in conjunction with Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, widely known as one of the premier research institutions for genetics in the world.
Since 2002, Farmingdale State College has held a strategic partnership with OSI Pharmaceuticals to operate a high tech bioscience facility at BHBP. BHBP works in partnership with Farmingdale State College to train Long Island’s next generation of young scientists by offering internships to students in the College’s bioscience degree program and providing money for scholarships.
“Thanks to the efforts of Senator Fuschillo and Assemblyman Sweeney, this legislation greatly strengthens our efforts to ensure that a leading biotech firm will not only remain on Long Island, but also will be able to grow its research operations and contribute to the economic prosperity of the region. The synergies between the Broad Hollow Bioscience Park and the campus have enhanced greatly the exponential growth of our bioscience program, added to the research achievements of our faculty and students, and provided scholarships that enable meaningful opportunities for the next generation of scientists—all great plusses for Long Island,” said Hubert Keen, President of Farmingdale State College.
“On behalf of OSI Pharmaceuticals and Astellas, I’d like to thank Senator Fuschillo and Assemblyman Sweeney for their commitment to the local bio-science community and leadership in bringing this important bill to fruition. This legislation will be a significant step forward for the residents of the State of New York, as it will enhance current and future economic and educational opportunities on Long Island,” said Naoki Okamura, chief executive officer, OSI Pharmaceuticals. “OSI and Astellas are extremely proud of the many exciting possibilities, including our potential future growth at the site, that result from this new strategic partnership between OSI, the University and the State of New York.”
Last year, Astellas Pharma Inc., one of the world’s foremost pharmaceutical companies, acquired OSI Pharmaceuticals. As a result of OSI’s previous success at Farmingdale State College, Astellas is looking to expand OSI’s presence at BHBP to nearly 40 acres.
“It is a major step toward assuring that OSI will remain our anchor tenant, with all the job creation that it entails, and it positions Broad Hollow Bioscience Park to be a long-term contributor to the development of biotech innovations,” said George LaRosa, Board Chair, Broad Hollow Bioscience Park.
Once the project is complete, Broad Hollow Bioscience Park will serve as incubator facility for small, biotech companies, a move that could spur the creation of more jobs and benefits to students. The measure passed both houses of the New York State Legislature with overwhelming support. It now needs only Governor Cuomo’s signature to become law.