McCoy touts progress, outlines year’s agenda

State of the County lists accomplishments and continues goals

Albany County Executive Dan McCoy greets guests after his annual State of the County address Monday, March 10.

Albany County Executive Dan McCoy greets guests after his annual State of the County address Monday, March 10. Photo by John Purcell.

— County officials recently settled six union contracts through 2016, and McCoy said efforts to resolve remaining outstanding contracts is ongoing.

Many touted economic developments and initiatives were tied to the city of Albany, but later that week McCoy said redevelopment of the city helps the suburban communities. His belief is economic growth will stretch into outlying areas if the county has a strong core to build upon.

He also said there are too many Industrial Development Agencies in the county, with eight different bodies vying for individual communities. He said a more regional approach is needed to help place companies interested in moving to the county.

Progress will be continuing at Lawson Lake this year, which reopened last summer as a free camp for county children. McCoy said additional buildings would be opened later this year.

To help foster strong families, he is proposing to give county employees four weeks paid leave after the birth or adoption of a child without tapping into accrued time.

He proposed continuing environmental efforts through establishing a new county Public Service Agency, which he would work with legislators to finalize.

“The agency will hold the authority to explore any and all options to reduce the energy carbon footprint of Albany County by developing and managing renewable energy projects at existing county facilities,” he said. “And the agency will explore how to provide county residents with the opportunity to purchase excess power not being consumed by county facilities.”

He touted his administration dedicating 372 acres for conservation and helping to restore four-and-a-half miles of the county’s Rail Trail.

McCoy thanked former County Legislature Minority Leader Christine Benedict, now serving as deputy minority leader, during his opening remarks for fostering bipartisan support on several issues.

“Bipartisan support was needed on many occasions for the good of Albany County and, as minority leader, Ms. Benedict understood that,” McCoy said.

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