Utica, NY (WIBX) - The Genesis Group and Rome Clean and Green are teaming up to make the Mohawk Valley a more beautiful place.
Together, they will establish the Mohawk Valley Keep America Beautiful Program, operating with a $50,000 grant from The Community Foundation.

Ray Durso, Executive Director of the Genesis Group, says the program will help highlight the region, both within the state and nation.

"Once we saw the success and we saw the needs of all of the region, we thought it would be a great idea," Durso said. "Let's raise the bar. And this is a great win for all of our community. Certainly, we look forward to working with all the towns, the cities and the villages."

Diane Shoemaker, who retired last week from a government job in Rome, was named the coordinator for the program. She says the new initiative will take Rome's successful idea and apply it across the region.

"If we're going to be competitive in the region, in the state and in the nation," Shoemaker said. "We have to start working together. We have to bring all of our municipalities, all of our cities, town and villages to the table to work on projects, to help us become sustainable as the Mohawk Valley in the state of New York."

The new MVKAB program will start in Herkimer and Oneida Counties, but has plans to expand into the six county region. In addition, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority has another $1 million dollars available to share with the six-county Mohawk Valley region, though no funds have been allocated for projects yet.