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Congressmembers Higgins & Langworthy Are Calling on EDA to Select Upstate New York as Regional Technology & Innovation Hub Site

Western & Central New York Region in the Running for Major Federal Investment Which Would Catapult Opportunities for Upstate Businesses & Workers

  • Higgins, Langworthy, & Tapecon Advocate for Regional Tech Hub
  • Higgins and Langworthy at Tech Hubs Press Conference

Western New York Congressmembers Brian Higgins (NY-26) and Nick Langworthy (NY-23) are calling on the U.S. Economic Development Agency (EDA) to choose Western & Central New York as a national Tech Hub, a move that would be a catalyst for business and job opportunity in the region. Reps. Higgins and Langworthy along with Rep. Joe Morelle (NY-25), who together represent 10 counties across Western New York, working with other members of the upstate delegation, are positioning the community for success in the nationwide competition, hosting several joint discussions with stakeholders to coordinate planning and recently meeting with Assistant Secretary of Commerce Alejandra Castillo to understand program priorities and elevate awareness about Western New York’s application.

Congressman Higgins said, “The United States is positioning itself to lead in global chip making and related technology, and Western New York is the community ready and able to deliver on this goal. With the Western New York delegation and community partners we are working to demonstrate how our region’s innovation, education network, training support system, along with our long history of manufacturing success and hardworking people provides the perfect recipe for Tech Hub success.”  

“With our demonstrated manufacturing success, the designation of Western New York as a Tech Hub would provide a unique opportunity that will spur innovation and economic growth for our nation,” said Congressman Langworthy. “Our skilled workforce combined with these resources will unlock the potential of this region and propel the United States to the forefront of advanced technology manufacturing while bringing new employment opportunities. I’m proud to work with leaders across Western New York earn this significant investment in our communities.”

Reps. Higgins and Langworthy addressed Western and Central New York’s forthcoming Tech Hub application at a visit to the proposed future site of the Larkin Workforce Training Center, located in the Larkin Center of Commerce along with local manufacturer Tapecon’s production facility. The proposed Larkin Workforce Training Center, which would provide entry-level manufacturing workers with skills to advance in their careers at Tapecon and other local manufacturers, is the type of project which could be advanced through the Tech Hub program. Tapecon manufactures flexible electronic circuitry, which is part of one of the key technologies that the Tech Hub program seeks to advance. 

"Tapecon is proud to be part of leading this initiative to help establish the Larkin Workforce Training Center as a Western New York employer-led, hands-on learning center, said Tapecon President Steve Davis. “Its mission is to provide employers access to programs that upskill and reskill their employees along career pathways in electronics manufacturing and other in-demand industries while also attracting and engaging the next generation of workers in our community. "

Partner agencies from industry, academic, economic development, and government, sectors across the Western New York regions that include the cities of Buffalo, Rochester, and Syracuse are working collaboratively on an application due August 15, 2023.

The U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) will designate approximately 20 Regional Tech Hubs across the country in Phase I, awarding a total of $15 million (about $400,000-$500,000 each). Of the 20 awardees, EDA will select between 5 to 10 applicants to receive Phase II implementation grants which are expected to range between $50 million and $75 million. The Tech Hub program was established under the CHIPS and Science Act.

The Western New York application will in part aim to make the region a leader in the expansion of U.S.-manufactured computer chips, building off Micron’s announcement that the company plans to invest up to $100 billion in a semiconductor factory in Clay, New York, near Syracuse. The vision would incorporate a synergetic approach to data science, green energy, photonics, and advanced manufacturing. In addition to making the U.S. globally competitive and strengthening national security, the joint effort would address industry needs for skilled workers in advanced manufacturing and give workers a path to job opportunities that allow for upward mobility. 

This new effort will build on the March 2022 visit of Assistant Secretary Alejandra Castillo, who heads the EDA, at a roundtable in Buffalo with Western New York business and community stakeholders to explore ways to promote economic opportunity in underserved communities, including technologies that would be components of a regional Tech Hub application.

For more information on the Tech Hub initiative visit: