A place every other place wants to be

Picture this… Johnstown and Gloversville filled with people of all ages — millennials just starting off on their own, families raising young children, baby-boomers looking to settle down after retirement. Around the downtowns are restaurants, locally-owned shops, entertainment venues and parks. Every Sunday, farmers’ markets are filled with goods from local producers. Beyond the cities are welcoming towns, villages and hamlets that represent “small town America.” Nearby are 44 pristine lakes, picturesque mountains and landscapes for residents and visitors to enjoy and explore throughout all four seasons.

Friends and neighbors all agree that the high-cost, high-stress way of life is a thing of the past. Instead of residents moving out, new people of all ages, abilities and incomes are arriving to find reasonably-priced housing and a safe, close-knit, connected community. Opportunities for entrepreneurs, investment and development are fostered by the convenient location.

This is the Fulton County that we envision in the years to come.  But how do we get there?

At the end of October, the Fulton County Board of Supervisors hosted Fulton County: Vision 2026.  The event was an opportunity to share draft long-term goals and objectives with the many community members in attendance. The half-day, summit-style workshop included presentations, videos, a keynote address and a discussion period to obtain feedback and identify future goals.

The path leading to our ideal future requires a plan. We are setting goals to position Fulton County as an extraordinary and enviable place to live, build a strong economy and emphasize the bond between our community and nature. Successfully accomplishing the plan will require bold leadership and a commitment to follow through.

While other regions in New York State are struggling, we are fortunate that our county’s leaders have worked diligently to keep Fulton County on a stable financial path. Through initiatives like SMART Waters, the Tryon Technology Park and Fulton County NY Posi+ive, we are working to promote growth and progressive development throughout the county.

We have affordability, safety, beauty and opportunity — valuable attributes that give us an advantage over surrounding areas. We have a vision of where we want Fulton County to be in 2026. Working together, we can get there.

Charles Potter is Chairman of the Fulton County Board of Supervisors.