May 13, 2008

The Politics Of Economic Development, Part II

Following up on yesterday's post about politics and economic development, a good test of whether the Niagara County Legislature is together in moving the county forward economically is whether or not they stand as one in fighting Governor David Paterson's plan to eliminate the position of Upstate Economic Development Czar.

The Upstate position was created by former Governor Eliot Spitzer, who divided the job of running the Empire State Development Corp. into two parts by creating equal upstate and downstate branches. Unfortunately for Western New York, Paterson is now being influenced by a downstate-dominated panel of business executives to end this system and appoint one director to oversee the entire statewide agency.

This cannot be good for Niagara County. Most Upstate economic development officials believe that current Upstate Chairman Dan Gundersen has been effective in his role, which is certainly a positive. But it's not about Gundersen personally, it's about Upstate and WNY losing a voice in economic development advocacy.

There should be no gray area when it comes to where the NC Leg should stand on this issue: As one, unified against this proposal by Governor Paterson. This is too important to let petty politics get in the way. If, of course, that's possible.

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

No relief in the sales tax for gas, spend any savings from Mt.View on NCCC, and they want to smell James J.'s fingers. Yes I would say an F is in order, the republican fat cats are useless, oh I forgot they painted some barns

Anonymous said...

Blame the governor its all his fault now. boo hoo FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF

Lancer said...

I see these idiotic comments, obviously from the same person, over and over, saying the same thing. And you know what? That's exactly why the Niagara County Democratic party just plain sucks. They are completely incapable of having a rational discussion about an issue without interjecting their ridiculous comments. Mt. View, smelling Jim Joyce's fingers, republican fat cats, etc, etc. With this mentality, is it any wonder that the democrats have been unable to make any headway whatsoever in the county? As a Republican, I say keep it up. Keep showing your true colors. It makes it easy to decide who to support on election day.

Anonymous said...

How dare those Republicans invest in the future of our young people by fulfilling the county's obligation to assist with the funding of NCCC!

And yes, I think the upstate economic czar is an important issue. For years we have felt neglected by downstate interests, and now it is being confirmed.

Anonymous said...

The loss of an upstate economic development champion would be very significant. I have some expertise in economic development and can tell you that decisions are not made in months any more, they are made in weeks, days and even hours. When a prospect knocks on your door, you'd better be ready to put your best foot forward because there are no second chances. For too long, our region has suffered because the Manhattan-based ESD has not been able to respond in a timely manner. If we go back to that model, we can expect more of the same, no matter what the politicians say. If Gunderson is indeed empowered to put a package together and close a deal, then we cannot afford to lose him.

On a note from yesterday's post, IDA packages have become the standard price of doing business in NYS. What I mean is that our tax structure and other competitive measures are so out of whack with other states that IDAs really are about mitigating bad policy to help exisiting companies locally rather than attracting any big fish to the area. If people consider that to be failure, so be it, but take away IDAs and watch small expansions locally dry up.

I'm not saying its the best way to operate, but until you can do a complete overhaul of the state's business climate and address competitive issues, it's the best we've got.

Anonymous said...

And one last point from my previous post...IDA boards can screw up a lot of things, but at the end of the day, 99 percent of the packages are cut and dry. If take an objective look (which I have done at a previous juncture in my life) at the projects approved when the GOP controlled the board vs. the Democrats you couldn't possibly see a difference. Sorry again to break the myth, but the facts don't lie.

Anonymous said...

NCCC is the future ha ha, I thought we were Marlins? Housing at a 2 year college for townies, whats next park a few old cars in front of the new dorms? Yes just a project to hire a few more republican cronies.

Anonymous said...

I have no interest in smelling Joyce's fingers...who knows what the Democrat coroner is doing with those dead bodies.

Anonymous said...

For that matter, the live hookers as well.

rob clark said...

I agree that we do need an upstate rep. for economic development. No matter who it is. But grow up people those last couple of comments are just wrong. Dem,GOP, whatever you are GROW UP.

Anonymous said...

Sure Rob, hire 10 upstate reps, it will help lower the unemployment rate. We really need to start getting rid of the pork jobs not adding them. But the republican's know better, hire hire hire, tax tax tax. Nose jobs, penis implants, yes remember you got a F, no wonder duh?