The state of New York's $142 billion budget for 2015-2016 includes $1 million to help support the unmanned aerial systems (UAS) test site at the Griffiss International Airport in Rome.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)-selected site is run by the nonprofit Northeast UAS Airspace Integration Research (NUAIR) Alliance, which also manages airspace in Massachussetts and Michigan as part of the test range.
According to Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi of Utica and Sen. Joseph A. Griffo of Rome, the test site – among other items in the new budget – will help move the Mohawk Valley region’s economy forward. The appropriation will help fund data collection and other important functions at the site.
The test site became operational last year. Projections are that the testing operations will lead to several-hundred new jobs in the Mohawk Valley region in the coming years, the state legislators say.
“This [overall state] budget is the result of the combined work and effort to find common ground that is sensitive to the needs of our communities … and that fosters real opportunities for better jobs and a better economic outlook,” Sen. Griffo says.