There are some important facts Western New Yorkers need to know regarding the ongoing support they receive from the Assembly. The Assembly majority led the effort to give communities the opportunity to decide whether to allow gaming, but the Senate declined to go along with us.
We have not said no to casinos in Western New York. We do have sensible, prudent questions about the proposal under consideration. We want to ensure promised economic benefits actually materialize.
The Assembly has shown a long-term commitment to stimulating and supporting economic development in Western New York. The Empire Zones program is succeeding in spurring economic growth, and proposals for its expansion are being considered.
The Assembly also has supported projects that build on the strengths of academic institutions, such as the University at Buffalo and Roswell Park Cancer Institute, joining technology and commerce to create jobs and economic activity.
We have also dedicated millions of dollars to revitalize manufacturing in Western New York by leading state efforts to assist companies such as Adelphia and Delphi Harrison modernize facilities and retrain workers and by funding the redevelopment of abandoned industrial sites. Other Assembly initiatives have sought to maximize the region's tourism potential.
The Assembly has remained focused on the critical issues of education, nursing-home care and economic development. The Assembly budget plan would increase Buffalo school aid $41.6 million in 2001-2002.
Western New Yorkers recognize the future well-being of their region depends on a long-term commitment to sensible economic development.
The Assembly Majority is your partner in this effort. Our goal remains to provide real opportunity and quality of life for working families through policies that reflect your values and build on your strengths.