MAYVILLE – Chautauqua County legislators are interested in taking advantage of the Start-Up New York program to spur business in the county.
Members of the Legislature’s Planning and Economic Development Committee on Wednesday quizzed Bill Daly, executive director of the county Industrial Development Agency, about how Jamestown Community College and Fredonia State College can get involved in the program.
Daly said he has been appointed to committees at both colleges, but neither institution has developed a proposal to be approved by the state Education Department.
Legislator Fred Larson, D-Jamestown, shared a memo he had written to Daly earlier this month asking about properties that are available in the county for development. He told Daly that he thought the list provided to him needed to be revised. Larson said several of the properties had been sold and some of the acreage on the list was not accurately described. Larson said one site in the Chadwick Bay Industrial Development Park in Sheridan was split by railroad tracks.
Daly said that the list included sites owned by the IDA or the county but that he also works with private owners when a developer is looking for a site. He said commercials and other marketing plans for promotion of the county are being worked on.
Committee Chairman George Borrello, R-Silver Creek, said, “I think private industry can get it done faster and quicker.”
Larson, who was formerly the county’s attorney, said some sites built up by the county have enticed new businesses, pointing to the success of the Serta company in Jamestown as an example.
Larson suggested committee members invite representatives from both colleges to a meeting in the near future so that the committee can better understand how the colleges will help promote the Start-Up program.
Borrello said he will check with both colleges to see if a representative could attend a meeting.
Committee members confirmed the request to appoint Cory Duckworth, JCC president, to the IDA board.
Borrello said he has been named a member of the IDA. Daly told committee members that the appointment will mean that Borrello will be required to keep some confidences about IDA matters. Committee member Terry Niebel, R-Sheridan, said he thought that county legislators should be loyal to the Legislature first. Borrello said he was sure the issues would be related to confidential matters.
Larson said he hoped for a strong working relationship between the IDA and the Legislature to promote the area for job development. “I would not have run for election and begged to be on this committee if I did not think this was so vital to the county,” he said. “We need to act as partners.”
Larson also had specific questions about the Al-Tech Revolving Loan Fund that is administered by the IDA. Daly said that the entire $12 million available in the fund is out in loans.
Daly also gave details about other tax incentive programs and programs that can reduce costs for nonprofit agencies.
He encouraged members of the committee to visit the IDA website for current information.
In another matter, committee members tabled a proposed resolution to monitor the phosphorus levels in Chautauqua Lake, pending further details on who will do the monitoring and what would be done with the data.