On December 15, the Buffalo Niagara Partnership unveiled its 2017 Council Agendas at its second annual Council Agenda Rollout. Attended by members of our four industry Councils, the program featured presentations by Dottie Gallagher-Cohen and our Council Chairs:
- Christine Bonaguide, Chair of the CanAm Council
- Steven Ricca, Former Chair of the Development Advisory Council
- Mike Leydecker, Chair of the Logistics & Transportation Council
- Steve Davis, Chair of the Manufacturers Council
The presentations focused on the work each Council completed in 2016 and outlined the Council’s advocacy and programming initiatives for 2017. The common theme of building upon our past accomplishments ran through each speakers’ remarks, with special emphasis made on continuing to work inter-Council to achieve our advocacy and programming goals.
Gallagher-Cohen emphasized the importance of the Council’s guidance in not only forming the Council Agendas, but also informing the Partnership’s Advocacy Agenda, which will be unveiled on January 12 (register for the Rollout here).
With the presentation of their Agendas, the Councils will now begin to focus on achieving as many initiatives as possible through its programming.
For more information on our Council Agendas, continue reading below or click here.
2017 Council Agendas
In her remarks, Christine Bonaguide mentioned that similar to this past year, the CanAm Council will focus its advocacy on implementing border efficiency measures to better move goods and people across Buffalo Niagara’s international border crossings. This includes ensuring the bridges are functioning at their peak, with appropriate and adequate staffing, particularly during the Peace Bridge Rehabilitation Project. Bonaguide stated another key advocacy initiative for the Council is to implement the newly passed Promoting, Travel, Commerce, and National Security Act.
She also said that in 2017, the Council will host its second annual Signature CanAm event, CanAm Now, while expanding its programming calendar to include Nexus promotion and export education.
Development Advisory Council
Steve Ricca stated that moving into 2017, the Development Advisory Council will focus on aligning policy at all local Industrial Development Agencies, including the ECIDA and the NCIDA, to better reflect the vision set forth by One Region Forward. He emphasized the Council’s goal to work to remove barriers to development by incentivizing asbestos abatement and reforming remediation requirements and supporting the reformation of Scaffold Law.
Ricca also mentioned the Council’s programming calendar will center on supporting its advocacy goals and conducting the necessary market research for the City of Buffalo’s Affordable Housing Study and the Downtown Buffalo Housing Study.
Logistics & Transportation Council
During his presentation, Mike Leydecker stated the Logistics & Transportation Council will continue to focus on ensuring Western New York receives its fair share of transportation funding. It will also support legislation that will permit ridesharing and support funding for the Environmental Impact Statements for the Transit Options Amherst Corridor and Transit Option Canalside/Cobblestone metro-rail expansion projects.
Leydecker indicated that programming for the Council will include major infrastructure project studies and the 2050 Long Range Transportation Plan, as well as education on smart cities and autonomous vehicle development.
Council chair, Steve Davis said that the Manufacturers Council will continue to support the community’s workforce development initiatives. He mentioned the Council will specifically advocate for the scheduled reauthorization of the Pell Grant program, with expansion of program eligibility, and the overdue reauthorization of the Perkins Career and Technical Education Act.
Davis said the Council’s programming will include its Manufacturing Month Kick-Off event. The Council will also continue to engage the Buffalo Niagara Regional Workforce Development Coalition.