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Monthly Newsletter | May 2021

CEDC 2021 Virtual Annual Meeting

Thank you to all who were able to join us for CEDC's 2021 Virtual Annual Meeting on April 27th as we reflected on our work in 2020 and highlighted CEDC's critical role in Columbia County's COVID-19 response.

Dr. Drummer's Keynote  |  CEDC 2020 Annual Report 

We welcome the new Board members elected at the meeting:
Tarah Gay, Public Sale Auction House 
Michael Molinski, Molinksy Photography
Anita Otey, KeyBank

Major Reopening Begins May 19th
Governor Cuomo has announced the lifting of most industry capacity restrictions starting May 19th given vaccination progress and the decline in COVID-19 cases. Business capacity limits and indoor venue capacity limits will be eased, with 6-foot social distancing limits still required. Curfews for outdoor bars and restaurants will be lifted May 17th. 

Read the Governor's May 3rd press release.

Read the most recent summary of re-opening information and pandemic-related resources for businesses and individuals.

Upcoming Columbia Comeback Meetings

Monday, May 10 | 1:00-2:00 PM
Join with Google Meet | Join by Phone: 478-974-9310 (PIN: 590953378)

Monday, May 17 | 1:00-2:00 PM
Join with Google Meet | Join by Phone: 260-306-5012 (PIN: 927483239)

Questions about reopening? Contact us!

Chairman's Corner: The Columbia County Highway Department
In an interview with Columbia County Board of Supervisors Chairman Matt Murell, Columbia County Superintendent of Highways Tony DeMarco detailed a strong pipeline of planned road construction and maintenance projects for this season, aided in part by renewed state appropriations after funding cuts in the early days of the pandemic. More.

Hudson Mayor Kamal Johnson Interviewed by CapNY
CapNY published this piece about Kamal Johnson's journey to become the youngest and first Black mayor of the City of Hudson, interviewing him about his platform of police reform, accessible housing, and equity; his path to leadership; and his first term amid the pandemic and the Black Lives Matter movement.

Bill Gerlach to be Columbia County Chamber President
The Columbia County Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors announced that the group's new president and CEO is William "Bill" Gerlach, a Columbia County native with an extensive career involving the business development, commercial lending, and relationship management fields. More.

Columbia County Among Top NYS Areas for Small Business Owners 
Columbia County was ranked the 2nd best county in New York State for small business owners by financial technology company SmartAsset. The analysis considered the number of small businesses per capita and their income and tax payments. Greene County also ranked highly, at #15.

Hudson Ranked 5th for Second-Home Buys 
After studying loan originations amidst a nationwide surge in second-home buying, a recent analysis named Hudson as a top vacation home hot spot, calling it "a pandemic favorite for those seeking to get away from New York City." Full article.

204% Increase in NYC Residents Relocating to Columbia County 
The Times Union is reporting a 204% jump in 2020 in the number of people changing their address from New York City to Columbia County, as compared to 2019. This number totaled 1,254 people last year, although a portion may have already owned second homes in the County.

Small Businesses Struggle to Find Workers
A March 2021 survey by NFIB found that 42% of small business owners nationwide reported job openings that could not be filled. The Times Union reported that area CEOs are having difficulty finding qualified workers amid the pandemic.

Shared Museum Passes Available to County Residents
Columbia County residents can take advantage of a new museum pass program made available by the Columbia County Libraries Association, thanks to a grant from the Ellsworth Kelly Foundation. People with a library account can reserve a shared pass for arts and cultural destinations in and around the Hudson Valley. More.  

Economic Development Week Starts May 9th
Next week is Economic Development Week, as dubbed by the International Economic Development Council for the fifth consecutive year. CEDC and its members are passionate about the work we do in this field, helping to define Columbia County's future by thoughtfully shaping the conditions for economic growth. This work behind the scenes – in entrepreneurship, workforce development, infrastructure, and quality of life initiatives  is creating the conditions for continued success.

Join CEDC Today! For more information about CEDC membership, please contact Michael Tucker at
Workforce Development & Education

Scholarships Available for Students Considering Manufacturing Careers
The Chief Executives Network for Manufacturing of the Capital Region (CEN) is once again offering $1,000 scholarships for high school seniors or college students pursuing studies that can lead to qualifying for a position with a manufacturer. More

Registration Open for Summer & Fall Classes at C-GCC
Columbia-Greene Community College has opened registration for its Summer and Fall courses, which start May 17th and September 7th respectively. All 11 credit programs will be open for the Fall with a combination of remote and in-person learning options. More.

New Olana Partnership with Columbia-Greene Community College
The Olana Partnership's "Ladder of Lifelong Learning" now includes a workforce development and internship program with Columbia-Greene Community College. Beginning in Fall 2021, C-GCC students can participate in a two-semester Olana seminar and paid internship experience. More.
Business Resources & Events 

Digital Marketing for Manufacturers | May 12, 8:30am - 12:00pm

FuzeHub is presenting a virtual workshop for manufacturers interested in driving growth through digital marketing, with one-on-one consultations that will result in specific recommendations and actionable knowledge. Register here

Manufacturing Expo: Agriculture & Manufacturing | June 2, 9:00am - 12:30pm
Companies in the agricultural and food processing supply chain are invited to FuzeHub's statewide virtual Manufacturing Expo. Companies can exhibit products from a virtual table, walk the tradeshow hall to make supply chain and customer connections, and gain expert insights from speakers. Register here

Intellectual Property Strategies for Your Business | May 19, 1:00pm - 2:00pm

IgniteU is presenting a three-part webinar series for start-ups, beginning with this May 19th session on "When and How to Seek Patent Protection." Later sessions will address branding, trademarks, and copyrights. Register here.

Tool for Finding Export Markets
The U.S. Commercial Service is promoting its Market Diversification Tool for use by businesses seeking to identify new overseas markets for their products. Click here for the simple tool (enter your product, current markets, and zip code) and how-to video guide.
Columbia County Indicators

Unemployment and Jobs
Columbia County's unemployment rate was 5.3% in March (as compared to 4.0% a year ago), slightly lower than February's 5.8%. Local unemployment remains much lower than the statewide figure of 8.5%, which is down slightly from February after the state added 61,200 private sector jobs in March. Click for data.

Housing Market
Housing market data for Columbia County showed continued growth in the first quarter of 2021. New listings fell by 24.3% compared to a year earlier. Closed sales increased by 44.3%, and the median sales price increased 13.6% from a year prior, to $302,500. 

Sales Tax Collections
Columbia County sales tax revenue for the first quarter of 2021 was $1.4 million higher than the same quarter last year, totaling $11.8 million and representing a year-on-year increase of 13.7%. This compares to a Capital Region sales tax revenue increase of 6% and a statewide sales tax decrease of 3.9%. Data
Other Regional News

Hudson River Valley Greenway's May 2021 newsletter features trail clean-up activities, a four-month virtual Empire State Trail Challenge, Amtrak's carry-on bike program, and other news and events.

Hudson Valley Agribusiness Development Corporation's April 2021 "Cultivator" newsletter features HVADC's role as a founding collaborator in the new Agricultural Viability Alliance (AVA) to bring world-class technical assistance to local farmers and food producers.  
CEDC May 2021 Meetings
May 12 - 8:30AM | Governance & Nominating Committee
May 17 - 1:00PM | Loan Committee
May 25 - 8:30AM | CEDC Board Meeting
May 31 | Memorial Day - Offices Closed
June 1 - 8:30AM | Columbia County IDA & CRC

Click for all CEDC Meeting Schedules

Buy Hudson Bonds
The Hudson Business Coalition’s Hudson Bonds are a great way to support the city's shops, restaurants, galleries, entertainment venues and more.  Hudson bonds support local small businesses by providing much-needed grants to help businesses adversely impacted by COVID-19. CEDC is the Fiscal Agent for the Hudson Bond program. To purchase bonds and view a list of participating businesses, visit
Choose Columbia 

About CEDC
Columbia Economic Development Corporation is the lead economic development organization for Columbia County, New York. Our mission is to strengthen the area's tax base through economic development and job creation, to assist businesses to locate and expand within the County, and to promote Columbia County as a premier spot for both business investment and personal opportunity. Learn more at

One Hudson City Center, Suite 301
Hudson, New York  12534
Phone: 518.828.4718

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Columbia Economic Development Corporation · 4303 US Route 9 · Hudson, NY 12534-4032 · USA