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There Ought to Be – II

December 21, 2014

We offer another installment of this feature because the Governor has called for ideas for his State of the State message.  He and Larry Schwartz don’t have to rattle our cage, not at all.

There ought to be a New York State program to eradicate Lyme Disease. The Governor should direct the State Health Department to organize a conference to cover the latest research on this disease, its effects, and its current treatments.  This initial conference will involve all NYS institutions and organizations with expertise and information on this disease.  One month following this conference a report will itemize the most promising therapies, treatments, and/or disease transmission targets with the goal of eliminating or limiting the prevalence of Lyme Disease.  Each of these research foci will have a funding request attached and a time line of activities.

There ought to be 10-point plan to resurrect the Binghamton-Elmira region, the worst performing regional economy in the United States and Canada over the last ten years. Note: That would be a new twist in our reportage on this matter. We’ve said many times before that the Binghamton-Elmira MSA is the worst performing in the U.S., but recently we learned that it’s the worst in both the U.S. and Canada. And it’s almost the worst in the Northern Hemisphere. It turns out that there are pockets of abject poverty in Mexico. Many of these are the regions plagued by drug gang violence. Government officials have, in effect, ceded control of those provinces to the drug lords. The Southern Tier is slightly ahead of those regions, but only by a small amount. No es ninguna broma.

There ought to be a German-style apprenticeship program in New York. In Germany, kids go from high school to top-tier high-tech employers. They study part of the day and then go to work the other part of the day. The academic training – done at the equivalent of our community colleges  – is perfectly tailored to the skills needed in the real world. The government, the company and the individual are all partners in the process of learning.

There ought to be a Smart Energy Community pilot project in New York. The state should underwrite the cost of equipping everyone in a small municipality with the capability of monitoring and controlling all their energy usage. Energy should be priced based on peak and valleys in usage. Participation in the program, as well as intelligent (off peak) usage and overall conservation, should be incentivized.  If the right environmentally-conscious community (Ithaca!) was chosen, the project would be a smashing success and make national news.

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