Last Thursday, the Buffalo Niagara Partnership released a regional agenda for 2015, which was developed in conjunction with Erie and Niagara counties and Buffalo and Niagara Falls. The agenda identifies projects that will improve the Buffalo-Niagara transportation and infrastructure, and others to promote tourism and growth in the area’s education and medical capabilities.
The agenda includes the following priority projects:
• Site acquisition, rail reconstruction and construction of a new main access road for a 400-acre business park proposed for the former Bethlehem Steel site in Lackawanna.
• A long-term extension of the Brownfield Cleanup Program, which will expire at the end of 2015 if it is not extended, which developers with tax credits for projects that clean up and redevelop polluted sites.
• Support efforts by the state Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) to develop a site permit program that would allow liquefied natural gas to be stored, dispensed and transported in New York.
• Improving the cargo pre-inspection program at the Peace Bridge by encouraging the federal Department of Homeland Security to provide adequate staffing to make the program permanent.
• Supporting the state’s Buffalo Billion initiatives to build a regional workforce-development center and creating a Buffalo Manufacturing Works facility near the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus.