Nov 21, 2013 Jason Emerson Uncategorized
Nearly 100 members of the Greater Cazenovia Area Chamber of Commerce and guests filled the downstairs rooms of the Lincklaen House for the chamber’s annual dinner meeting last Tuesday, Nov. 12.
Outgoing GCACC President Gene Gissin gave brief remarks on the state of the chamber during 2013 and mentioned many of the new businesses that have joined the chamber’s ranks this year.
The GCACC has 314 members — with about two dozen having joined the organization within the past three years — a central main office location on Albany Street where people constantly stop in for information and an average of 1,800 hits per week on its website, Gissin said.
“When other communities are losing businesses we’re gaining businesses,” he said. “We’ve brought people here and kept people here, and when people are here our stores do well.”
He welcomed numerous new Cazenovia “brick and mortar” businesses to the GCACC ranks: Allure Fitness & Dance, AmeriCU Credit Union, ARTicles, BG Buda’s Cucina Italiana, Blushing Rose Botique, Breathing Space, Cazenovia Equipment, Curtin & DeJoseph, Flowers by Foxgloves, J. D. Hunter Fine Furnishings, Key Bank, Laboratory Alliance of CNY, Latte Da! LLC, Owahgena Pizzeria, Owera Vineyards, Pewter Spoon Café, Pro-Tel Staffing and Prudential CNY Realty.
Cazenovia Town Supervisor Ralph Monforte then gave a talk on Madison County’s buy local campaign, “Buy Madison County: Calculate the Advantage,” which was created to educate local consumers about the advantage of buying goods and services in the county in which they live.
Nearly one-quarter of the county’s $110 million budget comes from sales tax revenue, and those revenues help fund numerous activities in the county — and directly offsets the taxes paid by residents of every town in the county, Monforte said. If every county resident kept $3.52 more of their purchases in Madison County every day, that would add up to $1.5 million in additional county revenue to be used for local projects and programs, to fund non-profits and to lower tax rates.
“There’s a reason why we should buy that morning coffee locally here,” Monforte said. “Everybody can have something to say about their taxes — all they have to do is buy local.”
Monforte said the county has posted road signs, created a website and Facebook page and is seeking to partner with county businesses to get the word out about the program and help fund the marketing for the program. He also mentioned the new “Buy Madison” debit card being offered by Oneida Savings Bank — every time a cardholder uses the card for a purchase, Oneida Savings Bank gives a portion of the fees collected back to the buy local campaign.
Monforte said local businesses who want to participate in the buy local program can put their profile information on the website’s local business directory, and many are offering incentives to customers who purchase items using the Oneida Savings buy local card.
“There are 70,000 people in Madison County, so that’s thousands of cardholders” that could potentially be introduced to participating businesses, he said.
The new GCACC officers for the 2014 year also were announced at the meeting. Jessica Amidon, of Caz Cans, will be the chair of the board; John Hunter, of JD Hunter Fine Furnishing, will be vice chair; Karen Reynolds, of Realty USA, will be secretary; Fred Agerter, of AmeriCU, will be treasurer; and Anna Marie Neuland will continue as executive director.
Also at the meeting, it was announced that Steve Burrell of CRIS CAT and Hume Laidman of SCORE were retiring from the GCACC Board of Directors, and Mike Nichiporuk of State Farm and McKenzie Houseman of Cazenovia Cut Block were nominated and approved as new board members.
The board members with unexpired terms were announced as: Gene Gissin, of Gene Gissin Photography; Robert Slodowitz, of ARTicles; Barbara Bartlett, of Lorenzo; Bob Cowherd, of Cazenovia Auto Sales; Karen Eldridge, of Isabella; Pam Ellis; Pam McFarland, of Cherry Valley Physical Therapy; Shannon Richard, of Morrisville College; Bill Tilison, of Dave’s Diner; Art Bigsby, of Fallon, Fallon & Bigsby; Robert Dubik, of Cazenovia Central Schools; Wayne Westervelt, of Cazenovia College and Pringle Symonds, of CPF.
Jason Emerson is editor of the Cazenovia Republican. He can be reached at email@example.com.
Jason Emerson is editor of the Cazenovia Republican and Eagle Bulletin newspapers.