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County Executive says White Pine is a finalist for chip plant, but no specifics yet

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Ronald Parillo
Onondaga County Executive Ryan McMahon holds a press conference to update citizens about the status of potential chip manufacturing in Central New York.

Onondaga County Executive Ryan McMahon is reaffirming that semiconductor chip plants are interested in opening here. McMahon said Wednesday that he can’t share specifics on who is interested in White Pine Commerce Park in Clay due to non-disclosure agreements. He did however share that the site is a finalist for three companies.

"There has been reports across the country about different decisions. None of the companies that we have been talking to have said they are not coming to White Pine," McMahon said.

McMahon said the investments and partnerships made across the federal, state, and local levels to attract a chip plant to Central New York make them competitive. While there may be higher costs associated with doing business in the state, he said other variables make up for that.

"Can their U.S. Senator deliver a waiver for more federal money? Compared to our U.S. Senator, doubtful. So, there is all these factors: workforce, being able to recruit, the ability for the site to actually deliver the infrastructure. We can do that on day one," McMahon said.

If a company does move into White Pine, McMahon said over $1 billion in investments will come to the community.

"First you're gonna be talking about construction jobs where people are building the facility, then you're gonna have to be talking about jobs with people making a product and some of these are gonna be technician jobs, some of these will be engineering jobs, some of these will be R and D jobs of the magnitude we've never seen," McMahon said.

The County Executive added if a significant project starts at White Pine, traffic issues in the community will see direct improvements.

"The state owns those roads. If you get a big project there, you gotta fix those roads and so, this project's actually the solution to problems," McMahon said.

McMahon said he doesn’t have a timeline on when a company could move in to the White Pine site, but he believes they will be successful in securing a tenant in the near future.

Katie Zilcosky is WAER’s All Things Considered host and features reporter. She also co-hosts WAER’s public affairs show Syracuse Speaks. As a reporter, she focuses on technology, economy, and identity.