The North Country Regional Economic Development Councilsubmitted its one-year progress report to the State on Sept. 14, which provides detail on the Councils achievements in implementing its five year strategic plan and includes a list of the 21 priority projects the Council has endorsed for the second round of the Regional Council competition.The report includes a description of how the Council established a framework to advance the plan, revisions to some of its strategies, an implementation agenda and a tracking of the advancement of priority job-creating projects awarded in 2011.
The following 21 projects were endorsed by the Council and submitted to the State as regional priorities for the second round of the Regional Council initiatives competitive grant funding process:
■Adirondack Meat Company - Ticonderoga Construction of a 7,500 square foot meat processing plant and retail store, which supports the agricultural sector by providing access to a local processing facility for livestock.
■Community Transformation Tourism Fund - Region wide Creation of a specialized loan fund for tourism-related ventures, which supports the need to foster tourism development across the North Country.
■Hamilton County Broadband Phase II - Hamilton County Phase II support for the development of middle and last mile fiber in Hamilton County, which supports a key regional aim of bringing broadband access to all communities in the Adirondacks.
■Curran Renewable Resource - Massena Purchase of wood fired combustion chamber to burn green wood in drying process for production of wood pellets, which supports utilization of a regionally sourced renewable resource.
■DANC Value-Added Agriculture Program - Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence Counties Makes capital available to farmers and related businesses for productivity and yield enhancement projects, which supports added value for the regions dairy, maple syrup and other food related industries.
■Creekwood Housing Phase II - Jefferson County 100 units of housing for families and military personnel, which supports the housing needs and future of Fort Drum.
■International Paper - Ticonderoga Assistance for conversion of processes from #6 fuel oil to natural gas, which supports the future of this major manufacturing operation.
■Adirondack Park Recreational Portal, Adirondacks Creation of a common web portal to inventory and link recreational assets and retail services in the Adirondacks, which supports tourism and the Adirondack Park economy. This involves all three regions which cover parts of the Adirondack Park and is therefore an example of a multi-regional project, including the North Country, Capital, and Mohawk Valley regions.
■North Country Regional Food Hub - Canton Establish a 9,000 square foot distribution facility for regionally grown and raised products. This project supports added value for the regions agricultural sector.
■Cape Vincent Green Energy Willow - Cape Vincent Assist in an operation to plant, grow and harvest short rotation willow for electricity production, which supports needed resources for the ReEnergy biomass plant at Fort Drum.
■Current Applications Expansion - Watertown Build a 10,200 square foot addition to Current Applications for expanded production and new product line. This project supports manufacturing growth in the region.
■Strand Theater Restoration Phase II - Plattsburgh Assist with final phase of restoration of the Strand Performing Arts Center, which supports downtown revitalization and expansion of the regions arts assets.
■Lyons Falls Mill Redevelopment Phase II - Lyons Falls Demolition work, development of road to hydroelectric plant, and structural integrity engineering. This project supports increase of locally generated sustainable energy, and carries out next phase of remediation of a brownfield development site.
■The Wild Centers Wild Walk - Tupper Lake Construction of an elevated walkway with interactive exhibits as a major added attraction at the Wild Center to support tourism development in the region.
■Recycled Landfill Recreation Project - Saranac Lake and North Elba Redevelopment of a closed landfill as multi-use recreational site for sports competitions and training, which will supports tourism development as well as the sports and recreation industry in the Lake Placid area.
■Adirondack Museum Optimized Wood Pellet Boiler - Blue Mountain Lake Installation of wood fueled boiler at the Adirondack Museum to support use of locally sourced renewable resources and reduce costs for major tourism asset.
■Raquette River Blueway Corridor - St. Lawrence, Franklin and Hamilton Counties A network of projects enhancing the Raquette River Blueway, which will support tourism development through three counties.
■Long Lake Broadband Phase II - Long Lake Extend fiber to further homes and wireless access points in the Long Lake area. This project supports aim of expanded broadband access in the Adirondacks.
■Adirondack Heart Lake Program Center - Lake Placid Expansion of visitor center and construction of camping facility to support tourism development in the Adirondacks.
■Carthage Apartments - West Carthage Build 364 apartments in the Fort Drum area to support the housing needs and future of Fort Drum.
■Municipal Water and Wastewater Infrastructure Support Fund - region wide A support fund for water and sewer projects in support of economic development. This project supports infrastructure and economic development in the region.
The progress report can be found on the North Country Regional Councils website at http://regionalcouncils.ny.gov/content/north-country.