Conservative Candidate Unveils “Potocki Prosperity Program”
Utica, NY (WIBX) - The man hoping to unseat Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente, Jr., this November, unveiled another list of proposals for job growth in the area. Conservative candidate, Rodger Potocki, is calling his plan, Potocki Prosperity Program. He says a key part to any election is hearing the consistent call for the creation of new and better jobs in the area. "After all, a community without good jobs is a decaying community," he said, as he points to his reason for holding the press conference in a location, (corner of Broad & Mohawk St.) that has seen better days. Potocki briefly reminisced about the bustling bygone era that he says at one point boosted a couple of GE plants, "when the area had a really strong economy."
Potocki says in terms of job creation, Picente has no major accomplishments to point to. "I can't think of one successful project after his 7 years in being County Executive, and in his jobs previous to that working for the state, where there's been a success of what we can call a permanent contribution, an improvement to job expansion in the community. All the indicators of our economic condition, show us still on the decline. New leadership is one answer, and I want to provide that new leadership by offering new ideas and approaches," he said.
The Potocki Prosperity Program is calling for:
Taxes - Under his Taxpayer Relief Program, Potocki says he will work to reduce the area's tax burden by lowering property and sales taxes. "Under my program, all will pay less," he said.
Community Investment Fund - Potocki says creating a venture capital fund, will allow growth within the community. "I will lead an effort to create a private sector-managed community investment fund specifically designed to provide venture capital to local start up businesses." He says Oneida County residents will have the opportunity to invest in this fund similar to the stock market.
Farming - The conservative candidate says if elected, he will work with farm-focused business people and groups to stabilize and expand the agriculture industry. "There are already a number of new production and marketing programs in place and I will look to support them further. I am disappointed that new businesses producing yogurt that are rapidly expanding did not locate in Oneida County. As county executive, I will become the personal liaison between county, its business development agencies, the Cooperative Extension and county farmers."
International Incubator - Potocki says he will propose the establishment of an international incubator center, to work in cooperation with the Refugee Center and other non-profit groups, to assist new immigrants develop business ideas. "But it is critical to understand that I envision a private sector run incubator linked to resources and tools that will allow immigrants to flourish and grow business. This entity should also be tied into our college and university system, through business and economics departments," he said.
New Development Relationships - Potocki says he will call for defunding Mohawk Valley EDGE. "I will recommend the withdrawal of county taxpayer funds that support the Mohawk Valley EDGE. Not questioning the intent or dedication of that organization, a true cost/benefit assessment of its achievements cries out for new approaches," he said. The candidate says the group is far from being effective saying, "The EDGE has not come anywhere near replacing jobs lost since its creation."
Job Training and Labor Need Matching - Potocki is also calling for the expansion of the county's internship programs. "A primary target for training must be the entrenched underclass. Internship programs should be expanded for recipients of government assistance to receive life skills training in order to be eligible for job consideration and to hold onto one once gained. These life skills concepts range from being on time, to personal finance, to work ethic inspirations," he said.
Hydraulic Fracturing - The candidate criticized Picente for his lack of leadership on the "Hydrofracking" issue. He says the state is on the verge of making a major decision on the controversial practice of natural gas extraction, and Picente is not fighting hard enough to delay that decision. Potocki says the decision on the issue, which is set to be announced in 90 days--should be moved to 190 days to allow for further analysis. "Where are the Oneida County Planning and County Law Departments? From the start, he should have ordered them to answer the many questions the public wants answered. Is not the County Planning Department a regional land use planning agency? If fracking is not a regional land use question and concern, nothing is." he said. Potocki goes on to say that the county executive should be taking the lead in providing all citizens and municipalities the critical and objective information they need on the issue.
Path to Prosperity - Potocki says his plans and ideas are a start to putting the area on the path to prosperity. "We cannot continue to be satisfied with personal and family wages lagging far behind most other communities even in New York State," he said. The race for Oneida County Executive will be decided on Tuesday, November 8th.