Eight things you need to know on topics related to Saratoga County's economy.
8 @ 8 is a newsletter filled with eight things you need to know on topics related to the economy in Saratoga County, New York. You can expect to see 8 @ 8 in your inbox twice a month. If you have content you'd like us to share or have a topic you'd like to see more of, let us know and we'll work to include it in a future edition! - The Saratoga Partnership Team
1. Ending the year with a Victory for Victory!
In case you missed it, the Saratoga Partnership recently announced that the former five story, 220k square foot Victory Specialty Packaging building in the Village of Victory will soon be converted into 186 units of much needed workforce housing. The $60M project will support more than 100 construction jobs during a two-year period, with an estimated annual payroll exceeding $5 million. The hulking concrete and wood structure on Gates Avenue in Victory, built in 1918 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, has fallen into serious disrepair since it closed as a packaging manufacturer in 2000. Through an agreement approved unanimously by the Saratoga County Industrial Development Agency, the property will generate $7.5 million in PILOT (payment-in-lieu-of-taxes) payments over the next 30 years – 23 times more than if the property remained vacant.
2. Capital Region Draws $84.1M at REDC Awards - Grants include numerous infrastructure projects
The Capital Region's water and sewer systems will get a big boost this year thanks to state economic development grants aw arded through the Capital Region Economic Development Council. Saratoga County was a beneficiary of awards throughout the county for both infrastructure improvements, studies and projects.

  • King Brothers Dairy to build an additional 7,000 square feet of processing space at their Northumberland farm, a $1.8 million project designed to aid with production of their new rapidly expanding French yogurt company. $475,000
  • Saratoga Performing Arts Center to convert the vacant Roosevelt II Bathhouse into a yearlong arts center would generate an additional $3 million annually. $2 million
  • Village of Corinth Wastewater Infrastructure Improvements Project $729,000
  • Village of Schuylerville Fort Hardy Park Master Plan $48,750
  • Village of South Glens Falls Water System Upgrade Funds $919,560
  • Town of Ballston - Ballston Lake municipal sewer at Ballston Lake $5 M
  • Town of Clifton Park - Hubbs Road Multi-use path $278,271
  • Town of Clifton Park - Vischers Ferry Road Erie Canal Access Improvements $150,000
  • Town of Malta Strategic Infrastructure Plan $37,500
  • Town of Stillwater Saratoga Lake Water Quality Study $45,000
  • Town of Stillwater Saratoga Lake Green Infrastructure Feasibility Study $30,000

Click here to read more about the Regional Council awards from the Daily Gazette , and Post Star
3. Top 10 economic predictions for the next 10 Years
As this decade comes to an end and another begins, many wonder what the next ten years will bring. From the national debt and housing market to climate change and military spending, here are the top 10 predictions that may affect the United States and your own personal economy over the next decade. Click here to learn about what is predicted by The Balance.
4.This holiday tradition was sparked by excess inventory and clever marketing
Do you play hide the pickle? Apparently, this “German tradition” started with an enterprising American sales clerk. In the 1880s, the old Woolworth retail stores started selling glass Christmas ornaments in the shape of various fruit and vegetables. Even back in the 1960s when I was a child, fruit ornaments were still a thing. I can remember hav ing glass grapes, oranges, and apples on our tree, perhaps symbolizing traditional tree decorations from older times. Learn how a creative marketer started a tradition.
5. Marc Conner named eighth president of Skidmore College
Marc Conner has been named the eighth president of Skidmore College after serving for three years as provost of Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Virginia. Conner was formerly chair of Washington and Lee University's English department and has published extensively on modern American, African-American and Irish literature. His term begins July 1. Welcome to Saratoga President Conner. Click here to read more from Skidmore College.
6. Amazon’s new area of domination: its own package delivery
The online retail giant announced that its Amazon Logistics division was on track to deliver 3.5 billion packages globally in 2019 — which accounts for approximately half of all of its worldwide orders, according to a spokesperson. (For comparison, UPS, which was founded 112 years ago, delivered 5.2 billion packages and documents for all of its customers in 2018.) In the US alone, Amazon’s delivery network now handles the largest share of its customers’ orders — more than its traditional delivery partners UPS and the United States Postal Service each account for. That acknowledgment backs up a recent estimate from Morgan Stanley that Amazon Logistics was delivering 46 percent of all Amazon orders in the US, while a source previously told Recode that the US percentage has already hit 50 percent. Their network of delivery stations employs 90,000 workers in the US alone. Click here to read more from Vox.
7. Cities of the Future - Ford to make Austin the epicenter of self driving vehicle service
For those who don't believe that self-driving cars are in our future, check out this story from Austin.  Ford Motor Co. plans to launch its self-driving vehicle service in Austin in 2021. But it has a big 2020 planned ahead of that.
According to the Austin Journal , the auto giant has made its first real estate deals in Austin en route to making Austin “the epicenter of Ford’s local self-driving business,” the company announced Dec. 11.  While people can't imagine self-driving cars tooling down the highway remember that in the coming holiday's some of us will be sitting in thin aluminum tubes (a.k.a. airplanes) that are almost entirely "self-flying."
8. I t’s the most wonderful time of the year
For many, the most expensive time of year. There’s certainly pleasure in giving  gifts , but are we any good at it? Many  economists  think not. It started in 1993 with a journal article by economist Joel Waldfogel, in which he argued that gift-giving results in a lot of waste, because the giver is not perfectly informed about what the recipient wants. To test his theory, he conducted two surveys among Yale undergraduates: in the first, respondents were asked how much they would pay for last  Christmas ’s  gifts  (the students were told to exclude sentimental value); in the second, how much they would accept in lieu of the gifts. Waldfogel found the respondents valued their gifts at between 10 per cent and a third less than what they actually cost. Further surveys by Waldfogel confirmed his theory, revealing that people value the items they receiv e about 20 per cent less than the items they bought for themselves.  Click here to learn more.