Broome County Executive Jason Garnar says things are looking up as he delivered his fifth State of Broome County address February 18.

The Democrat acknowledges the challenges over the past year dealing with the health, economic and emotional impact of the COVID-19 pandemic but says the community is going to “come out of this stronger with great new partnerships and resources.”

Kathy Whyte/ WNBF News
Kathy Whyte/ WNBF News

The Executive says there are bright spots on the horizon for a turn around in the economy and the return of events like baseball as infection rates drop and COVID vaccination rates rise.

Garnar says the economic hit of the pandemic could have been much worse had previous budget planning not put millions of dollars aside in the maintained fund balance and now sales taxes are starting to make a rebound.

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The Executive is even planning for future projects, something that seemed less certain a few months ago as the coronavirus rapidly spread.  Garnar in his addressed highlighted plans to finally see redevelopment of the hulking white former Endicott Johnson Victory factory building.  A number of projects have been proposed for the site in Johnson City but have fallen through.  Garnar says he’s looking forward to the redevelopment of the building into a residential community.

Garnar is planning to take his message to municipalities around the county with virtual road trip events to be scheduled soon.

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