Assemblyman John Ceretto, R-I-Lewiston, today urged the strategic plan review committee to closely analyze today's presentation by the Western New York Regional Economic Development Council.
"Western New York and Niagara County have been hit hard by the economic downturn and can put these economic development dollars to good use," Ceretto said. "With a growing tourism industry and the potential for a revitalized manufacturing sector, Niagara County is poised to make a comeback. Winning these important economic development funds is imperative, and I feel that, based on merit, our region deserves the investment."
One particular proposal Ceretto sees as essential is the Niagara Falls International Airport Master Plan, which will be the basis for future capital investment, economic development, and job creation at the airport.
"A master plan is needed to help the airport expand and coordinate millions of dollars in capital projects, which will enhance the quality of life for local residents and create good-paying jobs," said Ceretto. "Due to fiscal restraints at the federal level and significant reductions to annual state assistance, NFTA cannot afford to complete this important economic development project without state funding."
Ceretto further noted that expanded passenger flights can help bring tourists to the area, while investment in cargo flights can help invigorate a local manufacturing economy and turn Niagara County into a transportation hub.
"Making our region a transportation hub is key to strengthening other segments of the economy, such as tourism and manufacturing, and will result in welcome economic growth and job creation - two things our state's economic development councils hope to accomplish, and at a reasonable investment for the taxpayer," Ceretto said.