MAYVILLE – Chautauqua County Legislator Rod Rogers (Green Party – Forestville) is announcing that his initiative to improve effectiveness in local government has earned bipartisan support.
Several weeks ago, Rogers announced that he would be proposing the creation of a “Lundine-style” commission for Chautauqua County. This week, Legislators Rogers, George Borrello (R-Irving), Tom Erlandson (D-Frewsburg), and Mark Tarbrake (R-Lakewood) joined together to introduce legislation establishing the Chautauqua County Commission on Government Effectiveness.
“It’s clear that we need to do more than continue to talk year after year about the need for change,” says Rogers. “As the saying goes, “Our goals are only goals, our dreams and desires are only dreams and desires until we take action.”
Rogers has stated repeatedly, “If we continue doing things the way we have been doing them, the population will continue to decrease and our costs to live here will continue to increase.”
In a press release released by the Democratic caucus, it stated that Rogers believes that by working together, the leaders of the villages, towns, cities, county and other affected groups, can make the necessary changes to achieve that viable and healthy future that we all want for ourselves and our region.
Erlandson pointed to the county’s recently published comprehensive plan as justification for his support. The plan states that “the community views local and state government” as the top weakness in the county. In particular, “high taxes, too many layers of government, and poor leadership” were ranked as the biggest weaknesses of government.
The direction the legislators are suggesting is called for in Chautauqua County’s comprehensive plan.
According to the 2010 U.S. Census, Chautauqua County’s population saw a decline of 3.5 percent, with the median income well below the national and state median income levels. Rogers believes that the only way to turn this situation around is by bipartisan cooperation toward that new, more effective model.
The cosponsors will be working together with Legislative leadership to develop a list of qualified individuals to serve on the commission. The cosponsors plan to announce this list in the coming weeks.