Is County Economic Board too Republican?

By Erika Mahoney

Is County Economic Board too Republican?

February 1, 2013 Updated Feb 1, 2013 at 12:55 AM EDT

Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) The nine-person team charged with spending millions in taxpayer money on economic development projects is now assembled.

Broome County legislators appointed today the new board of the Industrial Development Agency.

The IDA board is a self sufficient, two-year board that develops new and old businesses in the county.

There are five new appointments and four re-appointments.

One of the new members, Minority Leader and Dan D. Reynolds, said he's excited to be serving on the board, but noticed the makeup seems to be more political than in past years.

"We had, prior to this year, quite a bit of experience with the members of the board," Reynolds said. "There were a lot of businessmen that have been on it for a number of years and now we have a lot of new faces, so we'll have to learn fast and do the best we can."

Legislative Chairman Jerry Marinich, who's in charge of making recommendations, argues otherwise.

He said there just two new faces, Jeffrey Davis and Robert Nielsen. Three of the new members are selected from the current legislature and administration.

Broome County Executive Debbie Preston will represent the administration, and Ronald Keibel and Reynolds will represent the legislature.

"I don't look for the party (affiliation), I'm just making sure we have quality people that are on the board that are willing to sacrifice their time to make Broome County better," Marinich said.

Marinich said when democrats made up the legislature's majority there were likely more people on the board with democratic backgrounds.

The four re-appointments include Wayne Howard, Terrance Kane, James Rounds and John Stevens.

Looking forward, Marinich said he hopes the new board is more active in the community. He said one of their first projects will be to develop the new high-tech incubator.

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