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Artvoice Weekly Edition » Issue v10n31 (08/04/2011) » Section: Letters to Artvoice

Development For the Rest of Us

Governor Cuomo’s next plan in his campaign to make New York the “empire state, once again” is a revitalized series of Regional Economic Development Councils (REDC). These councils will be formed by executive order and serve as a new approach to job creation based on community consultation and regional reciprocity. The councils could be a benign to brilliant form of representation in economic development—if they weren’t overwhelmingly composed of business interests.

I Reiterate, Chris Collins: Rats!

I moved to Western New York in 1998 after graduating from veterinary school in Louisiana. As a young professional, I was uncertain what the challenges of private practice would be. Some of my first impressions of the region were of the Erie County Department of Health. I volunteered at the free rabies vaccination clinics for cats and dogs jointly sponsored by the DOH and my Niagara Frontier Veterinary Society. I took advantage of the county’s program to test rabies titers on high-risk individuals (such as veterinarians and their staffs) and provide affordable rabies vaccines to those who were not yet protected against this deadly and relatively common virus. I studied county and state reports of the incidence of rabies and other diseases in our region. I placed my trash in the blue rodent-proof bins provided by the city of Buffalo in their efforts to control the local rat population. I listened to the Erie County Health Commissioner as he discussed their numerous programs designed to benefit the health of local residents. In short, I was really pleased to have moved from rural Louisiana, where public health planning is essentially nonexistent, to Buffalo, where I was part of a medical community that clearly understood that prevention is the key to many public health problems.

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