The Erie County Legislature referred a resolution sponsored by Legislator Timothy R. Hogues (D-Buffalo) requesting the organizers of the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus Economic Opportunity Panel appear before the Economic Development Committee to fully discuss appointing members from nearby residential neighborhoods and businesses to that committee at its February 21 session.
The resolution seeks to discuss the appointment of representatives of residents and businesses in the Fruit Belt and McCauley Gardens areas, including from the Fruit Belt Housing Task Force and McCauley Gardens Tenant Association, to the Economic Opportunity Panel before the Economic Development Committee. The Economic Opportunity Panel has the stated mission to address workforce development and economic opportunity in the neighborhood of the Buffalo Medical Campus. This action places the resolution on the committee’s agenda.
“We believe that an important step to community engagement would be for the legislature’s Economic Development Committee to invite all stakeholders to a meeting to discuss this matter to reach a consensus and outcome for everyone involved,” Legislator Hogues said. “Members from the tenant association and task force would help formulate future public policy that would impact this neighborhood. The economic opportunities that evolve from the Medical Campus’ development can provide a step up to the middle class for these residents, yet they have unfortunately been left out of the process.”
The McCauley Gardens, located in the borders of the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, has 149 apartments as well as small businesses on 15 acres, and residents and business leaders have expressed interest in contributing to the Economic Opportunity Panel.
“The County Legislature fully supports the continued unfettered development and redevelopment of the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus and nearby community, but we believe that it is essential that neighborhood stakeholders be part of any development or advisory committee formulating policy or planning for the neighborhood,” Legislator Hogues concluded.