January 20, 2006

Dryden legislators on Industrial Development Agency

This morning's Ithaca Journal reports on the appointments of Dryden County Legislators Mike Hattery and Martha Robertson to the Tompkins County Industrial Development Agency, and includes a fair amount from them on what they hope to accomplish. For Hattery, it seems to be about the cost and balance in the returns:

"I have a basic view of local government's role in economic development... Government should deliver services efficiently while minimizing the tax burden.... The economic viability of the city is important for the economic viability of the rest of the county..., but balanced development for the rest of the county is important."

Hattery also worries about IDA-supported projects competing with existing county businesses, and suspects that support for housing and multiple-use projects in the city of Ithaca's density policy may "violate the IDA's previous funding criteria." Robertson, on the other hand, is interested in using the IDA in conjunction with planning in work toward affordable housing and concentrated development:

"There are so few tools that we have, [the density policy] might be a tool that we could use to get other kinds of housing... All of the places that we have as community centers now could be made more economically viable... In some cases, they function as bedroom communities now, but we can do a better job enhancing commercial opportunities there."

The Legislature also voted 8-7 to move to a 3-year assessment cycle last night, with Robertson supporting the move and Hattery and Duane Randall opposing it.

Posted by simon at January 20, 2006 8:49 AM in , , ,
Note on photos