In my opinion, if the taxpayers of Chautauqua County are paying the bill, whether it's providing tax incentives to businesses, or paving our roads, we owe it to them to keep our money in the area. When we hire people from outside the area, we are shipping our hard earned tax dollars to another region. They get the benefit of our tax dollars, we don't.
However, I understand that in a legislature, board, or any other committee, people are going to have different opinions.
What happened at the last legislature meeting was the majority party in the legislature refused to take a position, they refused to express their opinion. By tabling a resolution to require a percentage of local workforce and suppliers be used for projects funded by the taxpayers through the IDA, these legislators decided they don't want to let the public know what they support or do not support. They took a pass on taking a position.
Two of these Republican legislators are asking that we elect them to a higher office. Yet they voted not to voice their opinion. Do they support local workers and suppliers, or not?
It's a simple question that they dodged under the protection of their partisan colleagues. Leadership requires taking a stand, not hiding from the public. Let's hope they take the opportunity to state their view clearly so the people know prior to going to the polls next month. The resolutions for local labor and suppliers will be returning again this month.
County Legislator Robert Whitney
Legislature Minority Leader