Eight things you need to know about 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. MaltaWorks $20.21 Campaign Kicks Off Today
The Saratoga County Prosperity Partnership, Saratoga County Chamber of Commerce and the Town of Malta Economic Development Committee today launched the MaltaWorks $20.21 promotion to drive traffic to small businesses in the Town of Malta that have been fighting to keep their operations open after battling the economic impacts of COVID-19 for the past year. Thanks to a grant awarded to the Saratoga County Prosperity Partnership by the Globalfoundries and Town of Malta Foundation, small businesses will be getting an added boost between March 1 and May 2. You can enter to win weekly giveaways by simply spending at least $20.21 at a small business in the Town of Malta, then emailing a copy of their receipt to info@saratoga.org. Each week, MaltaWorks $20.21 will randomly choose the winners of a $100 and $50 gift certificates. At the end of nine weeks, all participants will be entered into a drawing to win the grand prize of a $500 gift certificate at a business of their choice in the Town of Malta. Week 1 will kick off with a chance to win a $100 gift certificate to Lake Ridge Restaurant or a $50 gift certificate to Malta Farm & Garden
2. Navigating the ‘She Cession’: The Daycare Dilemma
While the economic fallout of the pandemic has been hard on all of us, women and working families have been hit especially hard. According to Brookings Institute, by the beginning of 2020 (the centennial of the 19th Amendment’s ratification) women’s labor force participation stood at 58%, nearly a three-fold increase since 1920. Unlike the Great Recession, which laid off more men, who saw construction and manufacturing jobs dry up, the pandemic shuttered industries in which women make up the majority of workforce: education, hospitality, medical services, and retail. “Four times as many women (across the country) dropped out of the workforce as men,” said Crickett Thomas-O’Dell, the Capital Region regional director of the Workforce Development Institute. The impact on women is so profound, it’s now being called the She Cession. With the modern realty faced by working parents, we are long overdue for a realignment in our labor market policies, schools, and daycare systems. If we want to see our regional economy rebound, we need to try to increase the availability of childcare for working families. Click here to read Shelby Schneider latest blog in the Saratoga Business Report.
3. $25 Billion Restaurant Relief Act Could Help Restaurants Survive COVID-19 Pandemic
As part of the larger American Rescue Plan (ARP), Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer plans to include the Restaurants Act. The $25 billion dollar grant program will help the struggling industry survive the COVID-19 pandemic. 54 percent of New York restaurants, more than half say that they will not survive in the next six months without more federal relief. "Restaurant employment in the Capital Region has been down 50 percent in the pandemic. Some restaurants have about 80 percent of their revenues down," Schumer noted.

Currently proposed in the Relief Act:
• Grant Maximum – $10 million per restaurant group, $5 million per individual restaurant.
• Eligible Expenses – Payroll and benefits, mortgage, rent, utilities, maintenance, supplies (including protective equipment and cleaning materials), food, operational expenses, covered supplier costs as defined by the SBA under the PPP program, sick leave, and any other expenses deemed essential by the Administrator.
• Covered Period – Grants can be spent on eligible expenses from Feb. 15, 2020, through Dec. 31, 2021, and the Administrator may extend the period through two years from enactment if conditions warrant.

Senator Schumer also notes that $5 billion in set-aside funds will aim to help smaller, mom and pop operations.
The Restaurants Act would also make eligible food service or drinking establishments (including caterers, brewpubs, taprooms and tasting rooms) that are not part of an affiliated group with more than 20 locations. The new relief fund will be designed to provide flexible grants that can be used to cover payroll, mortgages, or rent, set up for outdoor seating, PPE, paid leave, food and other supplies, or debt and other expenses.
4. Starlink Could Bring Internet to Rural Communities in New York
SpaceX has received $885 million in subsidies from the Federal Communications Commission to bring broadband to hard-to-reach areas of the United States. SpaceX is the only satellite provider awarded an FCC contract, with plans to provide service for customers across 642,925 locations in 35 states. SpaceX has already launched 900 of their 12,000 Starlink satellites. SpaceX will receive subsidies for the next 10 years, provided they meet milestones for bringing broadband service to the areas they have been assigned. The FCC program hopes to provide broadband for over 5.2 million unserved homes and businesses. Per the FCC, claims 99.7% of customers can expect to receive broadband with speeds of at least 100/20 Mbps.
5. NY Approval of Revenue Sharing for Battery Storage Will Benefit North Country Customers
Last week, New York State Public Service Commission (PSC) approved tariff changes. The changes mandate that when wholesale revenues for storage assets exceed contractual operating costs, 70% of that difference will be shared with customers, once a year. The PSC set a battery storage goal to have 3,000 MW of energy storage fully functioning by 2030. They are hoping revenue sharing will "provide an incentive for the companies to maximize the wholesale revenues of the storage asset." The North Country already has begun costruction on a publicly-owned 20mw battery storage facility. Breaking ground last year, the project in Franklin County will contribute to New York state's goal of achieving a 3gw storage capacity by 2030.
6. Shenendehowa Graduate & Girls Who Code Aim to Change Tech Industry
Aneesa Hussain is a 2012 Shenendehowa High School graduate with a bachelor’s degree in informatics/cybersecurity from the University at Albany. She has teamed up with Girls Who Code, a nonprofit formed in 2012, to work on closing the gender gap in the tech industry. Through her work with the nonprofit, Aneesa hopes to encourage more girls to consider positions in the STEM fields, and teach them to become role models for others throughout their educational and professional careers. Together, Aneesa and Girls Who Code hope to triple the number of females working in computer science and technology fields by 2025.
7. Trader Joe's to Open New Location in Halfmoon
Last week, Trader Joe's announced they will be building their second Capital Region store in the Town of Halfmoon. The new store will be located at 3 Halfmoon Crossing Boulevard, owned by Equinox Cos. of Albany. Trader Joe's opened its first store in the Albany region in 2012 on Wolf Road. The population in the Town of Halfmoon grew the most in the Capital Region - swelling by 14.5 percent, from 21,514 to 24,635 residents according to the most recent data released by the U.S. Census Bureau. With a great location off I-87 Exit 9, low taxes, business friendly environment, and a pro-business local government, it’s no wonder they chose to expand to the town. The town of Halfmoon is very excited about Trader Joe's coming to our town," Supervisor Kevin Tollisen said. "The town is very business-oriented and we take pride in the work that we do to bring business to our town. This is terrific."
8. Notary Public License Exam Preparation Courses
SUNY Adirondack Continuing Education is offering two online Notary Public License Exam Preparation courses designed to teach you the essential information you need for the New York State Notary Exam. A self-paced course is available through May 5, and a live course on Zoom will take place on Wednesday, March 31 from 9am to 1pm. View course details under Professional Development in our Continuing Education catalog. Pre-registration is required using the online registration request form.
CHILD CARE SURVEY FOR EMPLOYERS AND WORKFORCE
As more parents are returning to work compared to the onset of the pandemic months ago, a study released in October by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce shows childcare remains a barrier for parents who want to return to work. The Saratoga County Prosperity Partnership, Saratoga County Employment & Training, Warren County Employment & Training, Brightside Up, and the Southern Adirondack Child Care Network are conducting two separate surveys to assess the marketplace for future child care needs. Any data collected will be aggregated and your individual responses will remain confidential.

  • Whether you are a parent who currently has children in child care, are seeking care, or have used childcare in the past, please take a moment to complete this survey.
  • If you are a business located in the Capital Region, please fill out this survey.