The business communities of Buffalo Niagara and Southern Ontario are joining forces like never before. The Buffalo Niagara Partnership recently signed strategic agreements with both the Hamilton Chamber of Commerce and the Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce to offer reciprocal memberships between the Partnership and each of these chambers. This agreement unites our three business regions as one, nearly tripling the size of our reach to over 4,000 area companies and organizations.
A new report by the Empire Center confirms what many have believed for years – New York State’s prevailing wage law drives up construction costs as much as 25 percent, squandering precious tax dollars in the process.
Congress came together in a bipartisan way this week to fully fund the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) through the end of the fiscal year. The $300 million in funding was part of the FY 2017 Omnibus Appropriations bill passed by Congress.
The Buffalo Niagara Partnership’s workforce development efforts are being recognized by the United States Chamber of Commerce. Laura Smith, Vice President of Economic Development for the Buffalo Niagara Partnership, will be participating in the U.S. Chamber’s Talent Pipeline Management Academy. She is only one of 24 men and women chosen from 13 states to take part in this program.
Several of the Buffalo Niagara Partnership’s state advocacy priorities are now on hold after the Governor and State Legislature failed to reach a final budget agreement. To keep state government running, the Legislature did pass a stop-gap measure through the end of May. This budget extender does includes key issues important to the Partnership and economic development efforts in Buffalo Niagara. They are:
Last week, Grant Loomis and I joined twenty-five members of the Great Lakes Metro Chambers Coalition (GLMCC) for our annual fly-in and lobby days in Washington, D.C. During our trip, the group attended more than 50 meetings with Members of Congress and staff. In each meeting, we outlined our main priorities, which range from investing in our nation’s infrastructure to supporting our bi-national economy with Canada. A full list of the priorities we discussed in each meeting can be found here.
New York State has the third highest Workers’ Compensation premium costs in the country. To ease this growing burden on employers, the Buffalo Niagara Partnership is committed to achieving real reform.
Over 500 cities and more than 40 states across the United States have successfully implemented ridesharing efforts, including companies such as Uber and Lyft. However, Buffalo remains the largest economic market in the U.S. that does not offer this transportation alternative. And that has a direct effect on workforce development efforts in our region.