When the New York State comptroller’s office recently tallied up local sales-tax revenues at the halfway mark in the 2017 calendar year, it turned out that Ulster County government was up significantly higher than it had predicted.
Though the banks are still the indispensable cornerstone of the capital market, they’re not the same players they used to be. They can’t (and weren’t meant) to address every situation. Filling a gap locally are Pioneer Capital and Hudson Valley Startup Fund, complementary peer-to-peer lending platforms that allow people to borrow and lend money without the necessary participation of a financial institution.
The DEP will $750 million to upgrade the water-supply infrastructure at the Ashokan Reservoir in northern Ulster County. My rough back-of-the-envelope guess is that the Ashokan Century Program will produce construction, technical and administrative jobs in the low hundreds for ten to 15 years — a significant but less than colossal contributor to local efforts in economic development.
Here’s my hypothesis. The suburban ring is providing New York City daily commuters mostly for jobs that require a physical presence. Workers in the exurban area beyond the suburban core, such as the mid-Hudson region, are more likely to have a more peripheral presence in Gotham: independent contractors, artists of various stripes, higher-skilled specialized technical or service workers, part-time or seasonal employees, etc.
The Diaz Memorial Ambulance Service needs money. There’s probably nobody in Saugerties more skilled in raising money for worthy local causes than Bob Siracusano of Sawyer Motors. He and Ward Backhaus of Ward Backhaus Collision are now teaming up on a benefit on Friday, August 4 from 6:30 to 10 p.m. at Bella Luna restaurant on Partition Street.
Years ago, urban developers swarmed to Beacon, and a few years after that to Hudson. Now it may be Kingston’s turn. In places like Kingston’s Stockade district, the game appears to be on.
Ulster councilman and deputy supervisor John Morrow was unanimously elected chair of the Ulster County Industrial Development Agency by his colleagues this Wednesday morning, July 12, at the county office building in Kingston. He succeeds banker Mike Horodyski, a resident of Highland who resigned last month after holding the unpaid position since 2013.
The driver in Kingston’s first official Uber pickup is a native Kingstonian who attended high school in Saugerties. A 2011 graduate of SUNY-New Paltz, he’s an adjunct professor there and also has his own film production business.
Even in a rapidly changing economy, the basic problem doesn’t involve rocket science. Employers say they can’t fill jobs. Potential employees are unenthusiastic about or untrained for many jobs that are offered.
In its 40-year-plus history, the Ulster County IDA has rarely if ever turned down an application for assistance from a business that on many counts seems to qualify for it. But all bets are off this time.