Thank You And Welcome Governor Andrew Cuomo

Thank You And Welcome Governor Andrew Cuomo

By Todd Tranum

President and CEO of the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce & Executive Director of the Manufacturers Association of the Southern Tier

We produce Chamber Corner on the Thursday prior to the Sunday of publication. This is the third rewrite of this edition of Chamber Corner in the past 48 hours.

And believe me I am not complaining! There has been significant positive activity related to the Repowering of the NRG facility in that time frame. Following a successful repower rally last weekend we working with the Chautauqua County Labor Coalition were prepared to load up some buses and take a trip to Albany next week.

On Friday, David Wilkinson of the Chautauqua County Labor Coalition and I released a statement postponing that event.

Friday night we received an affirmative message regarding the repowering of the NRG Dunkirk facility.

Today, with confidence, we can say the voice of Chautauqua County was heard. The details of the final deal that will Repower NRG Dunkirk are for those who put the package together to share with the community.

We thank those who worked tirelessly and put it all on the line, to advocate for and ultimately deliver on a commitment to an incredibly important economic development project here in Western New York. First of all, thank you to NRG and its team for making this investment in the community. We thank State Senator Catharine Young for her unwavering support and dedication to seeing this project through to a conclusion that is good for Chautauqua County, the region and all of New York. Thank you to Assemblyman Andy Goodell, former County Executive Greg Edwards, and incoming County Executive Vince Horrigan for their hard work on this project. The support of Senator Charles Schumer and Congressman Tom Reed helped elevate the visibility and the importance of this project. We thank David Wilkinson and the Chautauqua County Labor Coalition and its membership for rallying huge support and being a consistent voice on this project. At the end of the day it was the voice of the workers, employers and residents of Chautauqua County that resonated from here and across the state on this project and truly made a difference. We warmly welcome Governor Andrew Cuomo back to Chautauqua County and thank you for hearing our voice on this important economic development initiative.

Shop Local. Shoptauqua!

When you Christmas shop at local, independent businesses you are actually strengthening our economy.

A 2012 study done in Salt Lake City, Utah, found that local retailers return an average of 52 percent of their revenue to the local economy, compared with just 14 percent for national chains. The same Civic Economics Study found that local restaurants return an average of 79 percent of their revenue to the local economy.

These numbers support what the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce has been promoting for years now – shopping locally makes a difference in our local economy. In addition, we are so fortunate to have such an eclectic mix of merchandise here in Chautauqua County including artisan, handcrafted and specialty items that may not be available anywhere else.

One of the ways the Chamber helps to drive foot traffic into local businesses is through the use of ShopTauqua Gift Checks. If you can’t find just the right gift, consider Shop Chautauqua County Gift Checks.

Available in denominations of $10, $15, and $25, these gift checks are a perfect gift. They can be used just like any check at more than 80 participating local merchants for everything from groceries to hardware to jewelry. Since its inception, the Chamber’s Shoptauqua Gift Check program has had a more than $2-million impact on the local economy.

Shop Chautauqua County Gift Checks are available only through the Chamber of Commerce. Because processing may take a little time, we encourage you to call the Chamber to order ahead. That way, your Gift Checks can be ready when you want them.

Please call the Chamber at 484-1101 or 366-6200.

Support our local business, support local jobs and support our local economy, buy local this holiday season!

Chamber Can Still Assist With The State Health Insurance Exchange

Let the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce be your first call for health insurance questions.

As many local business people are still contemplating the effects of the Affordable Care Act on their company and employees, the Chamber continues to work to sign many up with the New York State of Health exchange.

Some of the questions we continue to get are: Can I stay with my existing insurance plan and provider? Is it a better economic move for me to enter the new state exchange system? What makes the most sense for my business and employees? For answers to these questions, we encourage business people to set up a meeting with the Chamber’s trained representatives. Each scenario is different, based on employee and business structures. We would be happy to work with you to identify the health insurance plan that best meets your needs.

If you have questions give us a call at 716-366-6200 or 716-484-1101 or e-mail