State lawmakers in the spotlight

The state budget process, energy issues, Chautauqua Lake, and more were all topics addressed by State Senator George Borrello and Assemblyman Andrew Goodell during the Chamber’s Annual State Legislative Breakfast. This event draws a varied audience each year consisting of local businesspeople, nonprofits, and local government representatives.

While both the Senator and Assemblyman agreed it’s not ideal to wrap up direct policy issues in the state budget negotiations each year, they indicated it will be a challenge to change that practice. Senator Borrello is cosponsoring a bipartisan measure on that topic, but also noted it would require a change in the state constitution to change the practice. Assemblyman Goodell pointed out it’s the only place where the Governor has any leverage to bring policy matters to the legislature for consideration.

Energy discussions included issues around enhancing the state’s electric power grid, the continued use of natural gas, wind turbines, and tax breaks for purchasing electric vehicles. Some of the discussion focused on incentive programs for green energy products and projects that may be borne by users through service charges on energy bills.

On the controversial topic of designated wetlands for some portions of Chautauqua Lake, Senator Borrello noted the state Department of Environmental Conservation has indicated that even a wetlands designation for some bays would not prevent people from using the lake or putting docks in, but it may require additional permits for some uses. Assemblyman Goodell added the designation alone does not change the fact that Chautauqua Lake remains a lake, but urged people who have concerns to directly send messages to the DEC and the Governor’s office to voice their opinions.

As Assemblyman Goodell will be retiring from that position at the end of the year this was his final breakfast with the Chamber of Commerce. We thank him for his service to the county and our communities.

Sincere thanks to our sponsors for this event: Brooks-TLC Hospital System, Chautauqua Institution, Chautauqua Suites Meeting & Expo Center, DFT Communications, Jamestown Community College, Jamestown Mattress Company, LaBella Associates, Media One Radio Group, National Grid, Observer, The Post-Journal, and UPMC Chautauqua.

Additional thanks go to John D’Agostino, editor of The Post-Journal, OBSERVER, and Times Observer in Warren, Pa. John has moderated this state legislative discussion for the Chamber for many years and we sincerely appreciate his participation.

The Chamber has traditionally held three legislative events annually. The final one, featuring Congressman Nick Langworthy, is expected to be scheduled for late this summer. Please watch for that date and we hope you can join us at that time.


Due to unforeseen circumstances, we had to move our Business After Hours event this month. The date and time remain the same, but the venue has changed.

Please join us for a sneak peek at a brand new and unique space! Southern Chautauqua Federal Credit Union has constructed a Community Training Center at 110 Mall Blvd. in Lakewood that will soon be open for use by local businesses and nonprofits. You get an early look just by coming to our event! There will be complimentary appetizers and beverages!

This event is free to members and nonmembers alike. Advanced registration is not required, but is appreciated for our planning purposes, and will get you on the Who’s Who in the Room list.

The Chamber’s Business After Hours series allows you to stop in after work, check our list to find our Who’s Who in the Rom, have a fun social time while making some great business contacts, and then move on with the rest of your evening. Be sure to bring business cards for networking and our door prize drawing.

This Business After Hours is sponsored by Southern Chautauqua Federal Credit Union, Jamestown Community College, Media One Radio Group, National Grid, Observer, and The Post-Journal. Registration is open now through our online calendar at www.chautauquachamber.org. We look forward to seeing you there!


First Friday in Westfield offers something for everyone! You can enjoy the open businesses along Main Street and in the vicinity, along with street vendors, live music, and much more.

Vendors are welcome for this summer season. This year a small vendor registration fee is being charged to help cover the costs for marketing, promotion, and street closure for the event. This helps to create a safer and more successful event for both vendors and customers. Participating as a vendor offers valuable networking and sales opportunities. The price for business vendors is just $20 per event. For nonprofits its $10 for those selling goods, and no charge if you are a nonprofit setting up an information-only table (no sales.)

Sponsorships are also available for First Fridays. Learn more or sign up now on the Chamber’s web calendar at www.chautauquachamber.org and join us for First Friday. Dates through the summer are June 7, July 12 (reunion weekend), August 2, and September 6.


Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)
Are you a paying subscriber to the newspaper? *

Starting at $2.99/week.

Subscribe Today