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Dutchess County Executive Marcus J. Molinaro was at Spectral Systems in East Fishkill today to see new high tech optical profiler equipment, purchased by T-SEC, a 501(c)(3) non-profit whose mission is to help revive the regional manufacturing industry to make it more competitive. The new equipment represents a unique public-private collaboration involving Spectral Systems, T-SEC, Mid-Hudson Regional Development Council and Dutchess Community College. The technology purchase was pivotal to Spectral Systems decision to remain in Dutchess County and invest more than $3 million in facility improvements and manufacturing equipment. Additionally, Spectral Systems is expanding its’ employee base more than 13%.
County Executive Molinaro said, “This is a great example of our Think Dutchess Alliance for Business working together to expand our high-tech economy. This project retains and creates jobs, and provides regional businesses and students access to high-tech equipment.”
Spectral Systems, an employee owned company located at 35 Corporate Park Drive in East Fishkill, is the leader in precise infrared optical components, coatings, through final production. Dutchess County Assistant County Executive Ron Hicks began working with Spectral two years ago when Spectral acquired a Connecticut based business and was considering a consolidation/relocation to Connecticut.
Hicks brought in Dutchess Community College (DCC), a fellow member of the Think Dutchess Alliance for Business, and T-SEC to consider Spectral’s needs and determine if DCC and T-SEC’s new SMARTT LAB program would give Spectral the incentive and edge they need to compete and expand in Dutchess County.
T-SEC was established 10 years ago by local industry executives to help manufacturers grow and retain/create new, good-paying jobs. T-SEC works closely with small/medium manufacturers in the Hudson Valley region, providing them with technical and business support free of charge to, for example, improve product lines or operating performance, develop new products or markets, or respond to changing market conditions. T-SEC also encourages the formation of industry/academic partnerships, which provide educational, research and workforce development resources, which are mutually beneficial to both sectors.
Carl Meyer, President and CEO of T-SEC, said, “Often manufacturers lack investment capital to purchase costly specialized manufacturing equipment necessary to improve an existing product or to develop a new product – that is where T-SEC can help. We have been able make key equipment purchases through SUNY 2020 grants along with several Empire State Development (ESD) capital grants from the Mid-Hudson Regional Economic Development Council. That equipment is then located at either specific manufacturing facilities or local community colleges, where both our regional manufacturers and local students can benefit.”
Recognizing Spectral Systems was experiencing increasing market pressure as foreign players were gaining market share because of pricing advantages, T-SEC proposed adding a complementary technology to Spectral Systems’ existing processes to enable them to bring high-tech work, currently done by out-of-state vendors, in-house. This allowed Spectral Systems to make multi-million dollar investments in their plant, improve their bottom line and create at least six new, high-paying jobs. T-SEC purchased an optical profiler with its grant from the Mid-Hudson Regional Economic Development Council, under the Governor’s Consolidated Funding Application (CFA) program and installed it in the Spectral Systems plant. With this equipment in place, Spectral has been able to expand market share and grow its business, thus retaining New York State jobs and adding new employees.
Bruce Capuano, Vice President at Spectral Systems said, “Dutchess County and T-SEC’s assistance was key to Spectral System’s decision to stay in New York and grow our business. We look forward to continue working with them and Dutchess Community College.
Spectral Systems and T-SEC will work with Dutchess Community College (DCC), as part of T-SEC’s SMARTT Lab program to utilize the equipment provides hands on research and training opportunities, including internships, for DCC students. T-SEC’s SMARTT Labs make manufacturing equipment available for use on a first-come, first-served basis by manufacturers, students and faculty. T-SEC is engaged with other successful collaborations with Dutchess Community College, including building and fit-up a metrology test lab on the DCC campus with funding T-SEC obtained from its SUNY 2020 grant.