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With Bartholomew now chief of EDC Warren Co., area economic development sets new course

Soon after being named the new president of EDC Warren County, Ed Bartholomew addresses the Warren County Board of Supervisors at their August meeting. In pursuing a regional approach to economic development, Bartholomew has pledged to focus on the needs of rural communities as well as the area’s metropolitan municipalities.

Soon after being named the new president of EDC Warren County, Ed Bartholomew addresses the Warren County Board of Supervisors at their August meeting. In pursuing a regional approach to economic development, Bartholomew has pledged to focus on the needs of rural communities as well as the area’s metropolitan municipalities. Photo by Thom Randall.

— “I look forward to working with these wonderful small businesses as well as the large corporations,” he said. “We all have to be on the same page and keep people posted on how we can be helpful, and how they too can be helpful.”

Bartholomew: Tourism a leading priority

Bartholomew said that tourism development would be a new focus of EDC Warren County.

“Considering that 18 to 20 percent of the county’s employment is related to tourism, we need to be working closely with chambers of commerce and area tourism officials to put together a more comprehensive plan,” he said.

Bartholomew continued that he was going to be taking a regional approach to economic development, by building collaborative efforts with community and business leaders throughout Warren County as well as neighboring counties and the Capital Region. His new merged position, which is to save the city of Glens Falls $50,000 per year, follows that theme.

This regional approach, Bartholomew said, was the most effective avenue to pursue in an era of shrinking grant funding — and the state’s new criteria for regionalization of development efforts.

“We’ll be building consensus — and there will be more sharing as we establish regional priorities and determine how we can collectively work together on our objectives,” he said.

Bartholomew’s regional approach runs parallel with his ongoing multiple roles in public service. He will be continuing as CEO of the Greater Glens Falls Local Development Corp., the Glens Galls Industrial Development Agency, and the Adirondack Gateway Council.

EDC Warren Co. to go public

Along with this change in leadership, EDC Warren County is converting from a private corporation to a public entity.

In the past, such private economic development corporations were seen as a effective, legal way to convey grants and loans to private firms while skirting laws prohibiting government from benefiting private entities.

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