The other day when Mayor Butler hosted a meeting to discuss the city applying for Governor Cuomo's latest permutation on economic hunger games, I praised the effort as a necessary response to the rules of the game. This time it's one ten-million dollar prize for one North Country city or village.
However some took issue with my criticism of false rivalries that set up one community for gain and others for disappointment while most municipalities will just not participate. Meanwhile the public follows little of this Regional Council program.
Some communities like Watertown have hired a "rainmaker" consultant on the premise they have access and juice. Others may have other strategies in hopes of convincing a blue ribbon panel from a think tank that they should get the money.
All of this does spur good proposals but any choice is arbirtrary and given the differences between communities and programs, this is all very much apples and oranges
If Watertown is awarded the money, then it will be deemed an especially good program but does that mean it is ?
A lot of work goes into this Regional Council program and I am amazed at the effort that goes into it, especially by those chairing it all. The relationships and idea sharing has been a good thing.
But the competitions are not akin to the Yankees and Red Sox. It's submitting grant applications and in this case there is only one grant. That said, Watertown should win, because the mantra of our times is "it's all about me.".