Monthly Archives: May 2014

2014 Spring Environment Conference

This week, environmental leaders from businesses across New York gathered at The Business Council’s 2014 Annual Spring Environment Conference to focus on the latest changes to environmental law, regulations, and policies. This year’s conference focused on New York state’s efforts to “Lean” government processes at the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC).

Attendees heard from New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Joe Martens and Xerox Corporation’s Chief Process Officer Gregory D. North, in addition to other speakers from NYSDEC.

The event was sponsored by Behan Communications, Inc.; Groundwater Sciences Corporation; Harris Beach, PLLC, International Paper, The West Firm, PLLC, and Young/Sommer LLC.  Colden Corporation exhibited at the event.

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Clarkson President Tony Collins to be nominated to Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation Advisory Board

tony-collinsPresident Barack Obama announced he will nominate Clarkson University President Anthony G. Collins to serve as a member of the Advisory Board of the Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation (SLSDC).

With U.S. Senate consent, Collins will join a five-member Advisory Board appointed by the President which reviews the general policies of the Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation and advises the Administrator Betty Sutton. The Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation is a wholly owned government corporation created by statute in 1954 to construct, operate and maintain that part of the St. Lawrence Seaway between the Port of Montreal and Lake Erie and to enhance Great Lakes/St. Lawrence Seaway System utilization and trade.

“It is an honor to be nominated to serve in President Obama’s administration and in a capacity so deeply connected to the North Country,” said Collins. “The Seaway is a globally significant strategic asset with unparalleled opportunities to advance and balance international trade, world-class recreation and environmental stewardship.”

The SLSDC headquarters staff offices are located in Washington, D.C., and operations are based at the two U.S. Seaway locks (Eisenhower and Snell) in Massena, N.Y. The locks are less than 35 miles from the Clarkson University campus. The Snell Lock is named in honor of Congressman Bertrand H. Snell for his sponsorship of the original St. Lawrence Seaway Legislation and other contributions to the North Country during his 23-year career in Washington representing New York’s northern border region. Snell was also a Clarkson trustee for 47 years, including 25 as chairman of the Board.

Currently serving as Clarkson’s 16th president, Collins is a regional and national advocate for higher education – industrial partnerships that couple research discovery and engineering innovation with enterprise for commercialization and economic development with a focus on advancing sustainable energy solutions and environmental technology innovation. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo appointed Collins in July 2011 to serve as co-chair for the North Country Regional Economic Development Council.

Collins is the also the president of the Seaway Private Equity Corporation that invests in new technology companies based in St. Lawrence County, New York, and serves on the board for (TSEC) The Solar Energy Consortium, which mobilizes related resources in New York State; and is a member of NYSERDA’s Technology & Market Development Advisory Committee which provides technical and policy guidance to NYSERDA on energy and environmental research and market development initiatives.

In service to the higher education sector, President Collins is the immediate past chair of the National Association of Independent Technological Universities and a chair emeritus of New York’s Commission of Independent Colleges and Universities. In addition, he serves on the boards of the CenterState Corporation for Economic Opportunity and The Business Council of New York State.

The Business Council supports Broadway Association Annual Awards

The Broadway Association will honor Fred Dixon, newly named CEO of NYC & Company and Crain’s New York Business at its 2014 Annual Awards luncheon on May 8. The event, at the InterContinental New York Times Square, is sponsored by The Business Council of New York State.

Dixon will be honored with the Visionary Leadership Award. He was recently named CEO of NYC & Company which is New York City’s public-private tourism promotion partnership.

The Corporate Leadership Award will be presented to Crain’s New York Business. Crain’s is known for  fast-breaking stories and in-depth reports of Metropolitan New York business news that have earned it a reputation as the most trusted name in New York business journalism. The publication has won numerous awards and frequently scoops other media operations. In 2010, Crain’s New York Business celebrated its 25th anniversary.

The Broadway Association was founded in 1911 as the first business improvement district in the nation. It is a not-for-profit association devoted to the cultural and economic betterment of Midtown West, which comprises the Broadway theater district. Its members include property owners, major corporations, hotels, advertisers, unions, civic associations, theater companies, developers, banks, law firms, airlines and publishers.

The Association works together with other civic, cultural and business organizations and with the City to upgrade services in the Broadway Theater District, helping to foster the healthy climate that ushered in the development renaissance New York City  currently enjoys.

Both The Broadway Association and Crain’s are members of The Business Council.

Those wishing to attend or get more information should contact Nichols & Lence Communications for more information.

Scaffold letter highlights need for reform

Yesterday, The Business Council of New York State, Inc. signed on to a letter to Governor Cuomo, along with other groups seeking to reform Section 240 of New York State’s Labor Law, known as the Scaffold Law.

The letter encourages Governor Cuomo to take a harder stance on reforming the Scaffold Law in light of comments he made recently to Crain’s New York.

Read the Crain’s New York article, “Scaffold-law foes are undeterred by Cuomo comments,” by reporter Andrew Hawkins.

The letter is available online here. Excerpts from the letter highlight the need for reform:

“The Scaffold Law drives up costs on virtually every segment of our economy, from major employers, small business and farmers seeking to make capital investments in their businesses, to school districts and local governments. They not only face higher construction costs, but are also on the hook for the Scaffold Law’s outrageous, only-in-New York absolute liability standard…It has risen to the level of a serious crisis, and with your leadership and determination, we have no doubt that fair, common sense reform that protects both workers and the many diverse stakeholders demanding reform can be enacted…”

Groups signing onto the letter include:

Associated General Contractors of NYS
The Business Council of NYS
Unshackle Upstate
Real Estate Board of New York
General Contractors Association
Manhattan Chamber of Commerce
National Federation of Independent Business
The Business Council of Westchester
New York Farm Bureau
New York State School Boards Association
New York State Conference of Mayors and Municipal Officials
Associated Builders and Contractors
Lawsuit Reform Alliance of New York
New York State Council of School Superintendents
Manufacturers Association of Central New York
New York State Builders Association
American Insurance Association
Professional Insurance Agents of New York
Albany-Colonie Regional Chamber
Rochester Business Alliance
Builders Exchange of Rochester
Rochester Home Builders Association
Seneca County Chamber of Commerce
Syracuse Builders Exchange
Construction Exchange of Buffalo & WNY
Professional Abatement Contractors of New York
Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors Association NYS
Construction Industry Association of Rochester
Southern Tier Builders Association
Associated Builders and Contractors of the Triple Cities
Greater Binghamton Chamber of Commerce
Upstate New York Towns Association


“I Love My Park Day” this Saturday

parksThis Saturday, May 3, New Yorkers across the state will celebrate the third annual “I Love My Park Day,” by volunteering at their favorite state park or historic site. There is still time to register on the Parks and Trails New York website to participate at a location near you.

Governor Cuomo said, “I encourage all New Yorkers to take some time to give back and join the thousands of volunteers that have already signed up to participate in ‘I Love My Parks Day’ this Saturday. New York’s park system is one of our state’s most valued assets, and by helping improve these sites, we can all play a part in preserving them for generations to come.”

This year, it is expected that almost 6,000 volunteers of all ages will help improve parks and historic sites through hundreds of projects including park clean-up, planting flowers and trees, and trail maintenance.

In 2013, 78 participating parks and historic sites hosted 4,000 volunteers for “I Love My Park Day.” 

The Business Council is a proud sponsor of this event!