County’s future strategy report coming

JOHNSTOWN — Two years in the making, Fulton County government is due to receive the county’s long-promised “development strategy” for the future by mid-March.

“We’re expected to have the draft by March 14,” county Planning Director Scott Henze said Monday.

In his activities report to the Board of Supervisors’ Buildings and Grounds/Highway Committee, Henze mentioned the economic development strategy report.

“We’re really pushing to get that completed,” Henze said.

The Fulton County Board of Supervisors in March 2016 authorized an agreement with Troy-based River Street Planning and Development. The firm was charged with preparing a long-term county economy development “vision” strategy for the county. But delays have plagued normal completion.

Once done, officials have promised to put the strategy report on Fulton County’s website — fultoncountyny.gov. Fulton County’s cost for the project was $65,000. Two other revenue streams are providing $95,000 — a $75,000 grant from National Grid, and a $20,000 grant from Empire State Development. ESD is the state’s economic development agency.

County officials have said the new economic development strategy will identify a “vision” of where Fulton County wants to be in 10 years. It will also identify a series of projects, initiatives, ideas, goals and recommendations toward achievement of that vision.

Work to be done through River Street Planning and Development includes: preparing a county profile, producing two marketing videos, preparing a marketing brochure for the Hails Mills Road Extension and the Vails Mills development areas, composing a county housing strategy, identifying retail strategies for retail trade areas, downtown redevelopment, scheduling an economic summit, and researching a proposed regional business park and municipal comprehensive plans.

The report is also supposed to include a color profile to eventually be used in promotional and marketing materials. It will provide bits of existing information about the county, including graphs, tables, charts, maps, photos and images.

Michael Anich covers Johnstown and Fulton County news. He can be reached at manich@leaderherald.com.

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