Niagara Gazette — During his state of the state address this week, Gov. Andrew Cuomo outlined a number of new initiatives offering great promise for communities like Niagara County and regions like Western New York.
And while some of these efforts may prove costly and are coming at a time when the state’s finances are being impacted by Hurricane Sandy cleanup efforts, we applaud Cuomo for unveiling a plan for 2013 that reminds New Yorkers of the need to approach the coming year with enthusiasm and pride.
This is the Empire State after all, a place that has led the nation in many areas and can do so again, with the right outlook and leadership.
While we have questions — chief among them where the money will come from to cover the tab for all of Cuomo’s initiatives — the governor deserves high marks for doing something other high-level officials in Albany have neglected to do in past years: Remember Upstate New York and the potential benefits it can, if properly cultivated, offer to the state’s overall economy.
In his address, Cuomo reinforced his support the “Buffalo Billion,” an effort his office launched last year that is aimed at investing $1 billion for economic development projects in the Buffalo area, including Niagara Falls and surrounding communities.
He also announced a new “Market NY” campaign aimed at better promoting regional assets, including those found right here. As part of a larger plan, the governor is calling for the creation of “Taste-NY,” an initiative that would focus on improved promotion of home-grown and home-produced products, a seemingly perfect fit for Niagara County’s growers and winemakers.
He’s proposed a new advertising competition offering shares of $5 million for regions developing new and effective marketing campaigns. Such a program would seem ideal for tourism-rich Niagara Falls and neighboring communities.