The Town of Harrietstown is going to have a new Supervisor come Election Day… and in a regular feature here on WNBZ, we’re taking a regular look at the positions of the two candidates.. We’re going to look more closely at the Town’s Business Park and more specifically today, we’ll hear on Candidate lay out his side of the story… On Monday we’ll explore the viewpoints of Candidate Tom Catillaz on this issue…
Town of Harrietstown Supervisor Candidate Bob Bevilacqua says Economic development is clearly our most important issue, and goal, for the Town of Harrietstown. During a recent conversation with WNBZ, the councilman says “We cannot afford a wait and see attitude. We also cannot go it alone, or dismiss valuable existing resources by being short-sighted. We need to aggressively address this issue cooperatively with our neighboring municipalities and regional partner organizations.” The benefits, he says will include more jobs, improving wages, an expanded and more stable tax base and retention of local youth…
The Business Park is one of the key issues for the Town of Harrietstown Bevelacqua says In today’s economy, service sector businesses dominate the manufacturing sector. Suggestions that the Business Park is remote (since it is 10 miles from the village) and is hindered by not being near an interstate highway system (therefor no effective means for supply or distribution of goods) demonstrates poor judgment and would represent a large step backwards.
The industrial and manufacturing paradigm is the business model from the 20th century, not the 21st. Information in the digital form, molecular biology, nanotechnology is the material science that changes the possibilities and opportunities of products and services. The interstate highway we need is larger broadband internet access. This is a key element in any plan for prosperity.
Many local governments are looking to develop incubator buildings and sites. The business park is a great opportunity for business development. Harrietstown has been laying the groundwork, and now with the APA permit approvals just received last spring, the park is well positioned to be marketed effectively. We should not waste taxpayer monies on a speculative ‘move-in’ building plan, in the hopes that a manufacturing firm will find it attractive. Rather, we should focus on a regional outlook for business and tourism, and use the business park for locating incubator facilities which match that research.
Click Below to listen to a recent K&J Show interview with Bob Bevelacqua
A reoccurring theme is: We will need to work together as a region. We need to provide programs and services to recruit new business, and aid new and existing businesses.
We need to work with our neighboring communities to address the availability of safe and affordable housing. We cannot take for granted private or governmental infrastructure like standard mail and parcel post services. It is essential we stay vigilant in an effort to maintain what we already depend on. These kind of fundamental issues impact greatly on the ability to improve our local economy.
Bob believes that there are actions we can take now, that do not require additional taxpayer support:
1. Economic Preparedness – to target certain industries such as biotechnology we need to become better prepared as a community. Harrietstown has prepared shovel ready sites. We now need to take that next step and begin to aggressively market ourselves. This should include building an economic profile of our local region that specifically details what we can offer in terms of labor force, demographics, infrastructure, quality of life, etc.
2. Development Teams – A development team is not led by government, but is made up of representatives of the key industries we wish to target such as biotechnology, tourism etc.
3. Cooperative Partnering – individually, our local towns and villages will find it difficult to provide all of the resources, site options and marketing dollars necessary to attract industry.