Summary of RZFBs criteria in New York City

Private businesses may use RZFBs to finance a broad range of construction projects, including office buildings, industrial facilities or retail complexes. The New York City Industrial Development Agency (NYCIDA) has issued six criteria for determining which projects will qualify for RZFB financing. While these criteria apply in addition to the federal guidelines, they do not necessarily raise standards of transparency and accountability because they are vague and not easily enforceable. For example, IDA states that projects must “contribute to the city’s quality of life,” and “contribute to the economy of the neighborhood in which the facility is to be located.” These phrases are open to wide interpretation, making it impossible to ensure that these projects will produce concrete benefits for low-income and unemployed New Yorkers or incumbent neighborhood residents. 

New York City was able to allocate approximately $121 million. The New York City Industrial Development Agency has bonding authority and has chosen the Capital Resource Corporation to issue RZFBs. In addition to the federal guidelines on establishing recovery zone status, the New York City IDA has established additional criteria for designation. Such zones must have, for example:

  • a poverty or public assistance rate of at least 20 percent
  • an unemployment rate of at least 1.24 times the statewide unemployment rate, or median family income not in excess of 70 percent of the statewide level

The IDA and CRC are subsidiaries of the New York City Economic Development Corporation, which has been following a regular public hearing schedule and procedure in issuing bonds as described in our Resource & Tools section.

More information on Recovery Zone Facility Bonds in New York City in the links below.