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First Regional Forum on CNY Economic Development to be Held at Le Moyne College

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (For Immediate Release) … Central New York’s Regional Economic Development Council (REDC) will hold the first of several open sessions on Tuesday, Aug. 23, from 6 to 8 p.m. in the Campus Center at Le Moyne College, in a process designed to foster community participation in regional economic development.

Public comments are invited on the working drafts of the vision statement which will be available at the session and also posted on the Web site prior to the event. To gather ideas for the vision and plan, county-based open sessions and focus groups are being held in the five Central New York counties: Cayuga, Cortland, Madison, Onondaga, and Oswego. Suggestions can be submitted through the Web site: nyworks.ny.gov/content/central-new-york.

Earlier this year, Gov. Andrew Cuomo designated 10 REDCs across the state as part of what he terms a “new operating model for New York state government.” The goal of the program is to increase employment and business activity while improving the quality of life across the state. Each council will incorporate broad public participation in developing a five-year strategic plan for its respective region. Councils will apply for resources through the newly created NYS Consolidated Funding Application, and will develop performance metrics, identify obstacles to growth, and monitor progress. In his role as Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Cuomo used a similar, community-driven approach to administer the federal Empowerment Zone program, which began under President Bill Clinton in 1994. The REDC program is being coordinated by Lieutenant Governor Bob Duffy.

“We will gather together and listen with respect to each other,” said Le Moyne President Fred Pestello, a member of the council who has directed strategic visioning processes in two higher education cases. “All ideas are welcome. Diversity is Central New York’s singular asset: we are a mix of urban, suburban and rural; our community includes generations of the Onondaga Nation and Northside newcomers hailing from Bhutan to South Sudan. This will be a remarkable exercise in building community and hope.”

To learn more on the regional councils, visit nyworks.ny.gov/content/central-new-york. For more information on the Le Moyne College session, call 315-445-4255.

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posted on: 8/15/2011