Posted at: 07/03/2013 6:52 AM
Updated at: 07/03/2013 6:38 PM
Democratic candidate for Rochester mayor and current City Council President Lovely Warren unveiled her economic development plan Wednesday morning.
Warren says her plan – Building Communities of Opportunity for All of Rochester – would refocus City Hall to address the city’s unemployment and shrinking tax base.
She said, “Rochester should be proud of the recent redevelopment of our downtown, but we must resist the temptation to simplistically measure our economic growth in terms of the number of ribbon cuttings a year. Doing so has given our city a false sense of prosperity and diverted our attention from our most critical economic challenge – our burgeoning unemployment.”
Her plan includes new public policy to link spending with job growth goals, new incentives for small businesses and new strategies to address the city’s employment skills deficit. Warren also suggests using new technology to create what she calls an “open checkbook” of all city spending.
The plan would also include identifying new funding opportunities that Rochester would be eligible for.
Mayor Richards' campaign released a statement saying, "Tom Richards has spent his entire professional life creating jobs in Rochester, first as a business leader and now as Rochester's Mayor. Under his leadership, nearly $1.7 billion has been invested in businesses and neighborhoods in every corner of Rochester, for projects large and small. When the future of Eastman Business Park was in jeopardy, it was Mayor Richards who spearheaded the effort to save over 6,000 jobs. For the first time in our city's history, Mayor Richards brought together labor, contractors and the City to create a job training program for city residents and minorities, and insisted upon their hiring for big ticket projects like Midtown. This was never City policy, until Tom Richards insisted on it. Ms. Warren's press release underscores her lack of experience with economic development. Her plan is collection of random ideas from a politician who has never created a private sector job in her life. The people of Rochester deserve more than plans; they deserve the results that Tom Richards is providing."
Warren will face fellow democrat and incumbent mayor Tom Richards in a primary this September.