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Bruno's exit raises questions about AMD plans

Wth much of the Capital District still reeling from the news State Senate Majority Leader Joseph Bruno, R-Brunswick, won't be seeking re-election, his exit from the political scene could also cause alarm for those tracking one of his largest ongoing projects: the construction of an Advanced Microchip Devices chip manufacturing plant in Malta.

Bruno played a major role in advocating for a $1.2 billion state incentive package to entice AMD to choose Malta as their next manufacturing site. It was not unusual for Bruno to use his political might to bring change the Capital District.

Local figures close to the project don't see a need to worry, though.

It should have no effect on AMD's decision to come here, said Michael Relyea, executive director of the Luther Forest Technology Campus, where the AMD plant would be located. "This is a project that has been in motion for 10 years in this community. Once something like this gets in motion, it's hard to stop."

Malta Supervisor Paul Sausville said he shares those sentiments.

"He has set the stage for AMD to come to Malta," said Sausville. "The train is on track, and if he wants to jump off, the train is still going to find its way to the station."

Sausville added that Bruno has accomplished a lot during his 32 years in the Senate.

"He's 79 years old; he's done an awful lot for his constituency and has done a lot for the area," he said.

Bruno, along with Gov. David Paterson and Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, D-Manhattan, met with AMD CEO Hector Ruiz Tuesday, June 24, at the Capitol.

No announcements were made by any party regarding the visit, and Relyea referred to the meeting as "meet and greet" in nature.

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