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Following Governor Andrew Cuomo’s State of the State address last week, local officials are proceeding with caution – as a new economic development model is set to arise in New York State.

Lieutenant Governor Bob Duffy will be leading 10 new Regional Economic Development Councils. Those councils will work to integrate local job-creation engines, like Genesee County’s Economic Development Center.

GCEDC President Steve Hyde says he’s optimistic about the Regional Councils – but he maintains that there is no substitute for localized economic development.

"A regional model without a local connection is a model that will fail," says Hyde. "It would be virtually impossible to pull off some of the stuff that we're doing - with the partners we have in the city, towns and villages - without a strong local presence.

"At the regional level, you just don't understand what the needs are in the marketplace, unless you have someone there on the ground."

Hyde is a Vice-Chairman on the New York State Economic Development Council, and says he sees the potential in Regional Development Councils.

"I still think there could be opportunities through a regional model," he says, "to consolidate and eliminate some waste, possibly. And also the opportunity to improve communications across the organizations."

According to Hyde, no one is exactly sure right now of exactly how the Regional Economic Development Councils will work.


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