What do you think of when you hear the words “alphabet soup?” The vegetable soup with a floating alphabet? It was always fun to look at the different letters and see what you could spell with them. And before you knew it, the soup was gone. Today, as an adult and working in government, alphabet soup takes on a whole new meaning. [Read more...]
The Workforce Development Institute is a statewide nonprofit organization with flexible regional programs. WDI began as a partner to the state AFL-CIO and local labor federations to provide workforce training and education services to regional and local unions. It has since broadened its role and its constituency to include economic and community development and business.
A year ago, headlines in the Watertown Daily Times read, “North country awarded $103.2 million.” Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo had announced the first Regional Economic Council Awards, and the north country was among the top four winning regions in the statewide competition.
In 2000, the federal government began its push to “Bridge the Digital Divide” between metropolitan and rural areas to bring high-speed, reliable broadband telecommunications infrastructure to rural America. The problem, then as it is today, is that low population densities in rural areas do not provide sufficient return-on-investment for private carriers. Therefore, government, on the federal level through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and the state level through Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s recently announced Connect New York Broadband Grants, has played a significant role in motivating private and public sector investment in broadband telecommunications infrastructure in rural areas like the north country.
New York launched a new approach to its economic development and job creation program with the establishment of regional councils across the state. This bottom-up approach, advanced by Gov. Cuomo, has enabled the region to create its own economic strategy and realign its regional priorities. As we enter the second year of the regional council initiative, the effort has been recognized by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in a new report that places New York State in the top 10 states for growth, productivity and livability. The report can be found at: http://www.uschamber.com/press/releases/2012/june/new-us-chamber-study-r.