State and federal leaders promised thousands of jobs three and a half years ago when they announced a new photonics institute — promises Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb said have so far gone unfulfilled.

"It clearly is an overstatement with the press conferences that were held, the promises of federal money and state money and here we are and those thousands of jobs have not yet been created and who knows if they're ever going to be," he said.

The photonics Testing Assembly and Packaging, or TAP, facility is now open in Rochester's Eastman Business Park. Seven people work in the building.

"We're not sure what's been spent from either the federal government side or New York state government and this is where we're missing transparency, openness, what really is going on, what's really the adjusted timetable," Kolb said.

But Empire State Development Finger Lakes Regional Director Vincent Esposito said making a dollars-to-jobs comparison is unfair because this is about a new industry and not an individual company.

"This is like creating a new interchange in a highway or broadband," he said. “We are building a state-owned piece of infrastructure that companies can come utilize. So it's not a direct job creator but it's still an enormously important part to a long-term innovation economic development strategy."

Esposito said other private companies plan to start using the facility this month and the state will begin to see some tangible job numbers soon.

"It never has been intended to and never will create a lot of high number of jobs. What it does is provide a facility that New York State has invested almost $200 million in here in Rochester that will attract people to utilize the equipment so that they can commercialize their products in their own private companies and that's where the job creation comes into play," he said.

He said Kolb's criticism about lack of transparency is an unfair one, pointing out the state created a photonics board which met last week specifically to update the public on the state of the project and the investment.

"It's frustrating to see someone that important, an elected official who's always calling for increased transparency, not recognize it when he sees it," Esposito said.

The minority leader, however, said he's looking for specific metrics when it comes to all economic development, so it's clear how much is being spent, on what and if projects are on schedule or not.