Jan. 21, 2010

Diamond Packaging Hosts Statewide Workforce Development Initiative Tour

Rochester, NY – Governor David A. Paterson kicked off a statewide workforce development initiative by directing Empire State Development (ESD) Chairman and CEO Dennis M. Mullen and Department of Labor (DOL) Commissioner M. Patricia Smith to work with businesses across New York on how they can take advantage of New York's business development programs.This four city, two day tour, kicked-off in Saratoga and also made stops in Syracuse, Binghamton, and at Diamond Packaging in Rochester. The tour promoted tax incentives, free recruitment and human resources expertise, and innovative marketing services that could save New York State businesses thousands of dollars per year.

"Providing New York's businesses with the necessary tools and assistance they need to develop our State's workforce is critical during these difficult economic times," Governor Paterson said. "By directing Chairman Mullen and Commissioner Smith to make sure businesses are aware of New York's valuable services, our communities can work to develop the economy, get businesses hiring again and put people back to work."

ESD's main priority is to create a climate that assists all businesses in New York State, including start-up companies, companies looking to grow or expand, and those looking to relocate to New York. ESD works with businesses on an individual basis and through partner organizations to tailor numerous programs and services to meet businesses evolving needs.

Empire State Development Chairman and CEO designate Dennis M. Mullen said: "The Governor recognizes that we must all work side by side to leverage our many assets. Working with DOL we can maximize our outreach and educate New Yorkers on the wealth of State resources and assistance available. ESD has several key initiatives already in place, which focus on the needs of businesses. Together we are connecting New Yorkers with those resources so they can save money, create jobs and grow their businesses. This tour will aid in our mission to strengthen our State, grow our economy and get New Yorkers back to work."

In October Empire State Development announced that Diamond Packaging has been awarded $700,000 in Round 1 of the Upstate Regional Blueprint Funding. Diamond will retain 90 existing jobs and create 100 new jobs with this investment.

DOL has a number of services for businesses that can save them both time and money, including human resource services to help companies prepare job descriptions, develop employee handbooks and develop training workshops and seminars. These free services can save a start-up and growing companies thousand in consulting fees. DOL also provides businesses that are hiring with the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC). These credits, administered by the Department of Labor, offer a company up to $4,800 in tax incentives for any business that hire veterans, disabled veterans, youth and food stamp recipients.

Labor Commissioner M. Patricia Smith said: "We have the resumes of over 800,000 hard working and qualified New Yorkers ready to start working today. Together with Governor Paterson and our partners at ESD, we can offer New York companies every resource at our disposal to save them every dollar they can to grow their business and getting people back to work."

In addition to human resource and tax credit assistance, DOL offers help to businesses with recruitment and on-line job postings that employers can utilize free of charge. This service allows employers to post their positions with DOL, as well as having access to hundreds of thousands of resumes, which can save a company hundreds of dollars in recruitment costs. Companies can also take advantage of DOL's technical assistance programs on how to implement social networking to market their products and grow their customer base. DOL provides free social networking training to any company looking to take advantage of this new marketing tool.

For more information on ESD's and DOL's programs and services visit http://www.empire.state.ny.us and http://www.labor.state.ny.us.

About Diamond Packaging

Founded in 1911, Diamond Packaging is a WBENC-certified woman-owned business specializing in developing innovative and sustainable packaging solutions. Utilizing state of-the-art technologies, Diamond designs and manufactures paperboard and plastic folding cartons, and provides comprehensive contract packaging services for the personal care (cosmetics & skin care, fragrance, hair care), health care, pharmaceutical, nutraceutical, and food and confectionery industries. Its client portfolio includes Bausch & Lomb, Beiersdorf, Coty, Elizabeth Arden, Estée Lauder, Godiva Chocolatier, Johnson & Johnson, L’Oreal, and Procter & Gamble. As part of the Global Packaging Alliance® (GPA), Diamond and its alliance members offer packaging solutions to companies operating on an international scale. Customers receive responsive, localized service, award-winning creative designs, identical product specifications and consistent brand recognition, resulting in unparalleled worldwide packaging support. For more information about Diamond Packaging, contact Dennis Bacchetta at (585) 334-8030 x229 or visit the website at www.diamondpackaging.com. For more information about Diamond’s greenbox initiative, visit the sustainability microsite at www.diamondpackaging.com/green.