Work remains for counties

Fulton and Montgomery counties have reached an agreement regarding Montgomery County’s use of the Fulton County Landfill. Could this be a sign of greater cooperation between the two counties?

The Fulton County Board of Supervisors on Monday approved a 10-year deal with Montgomery County to allow it to dispose its waste at the Fulton County Landfill.

The deal appears to benefit both counties. Fulton County could realize at least $1 million per year in revenue, which will go back into the county Department of Solid Waste operation. Montgomery County gets a place to dump its trash after its relationship with the Montgomery-Otsego-Schoharie Solid Waste Management Authority ends.

We hope the two counties now will work together on some other projects. Among them:

  • A potential casino in Montgomery County. Ken Rose, director of Montgomery County’s Business Development Center, said he’d like to see the Fulton County Board of Supervisors approve a resolution in support of the casino effort in Montgomery County.

Given the strong regional economic effect of a casino, the show of support may be a good idea.

  • A proposed highway from Fultonville to an area near the Johnstown Industrial Park. While this project could steer more economic development into Fulton County, some officials in Montgomery County have noted they are concerned about the idea. Not only could development skip Montgomery County, they say, but it could hurt existing businesses, such as truck stops.

Fulton County plans to study the bypass idea, but Montgomery County officials ultimately would need to be on board with the plan for this to work. Montgomery County officials need some assurance their county would benefit from the project.

  • A regional business park along Route 30A. The idea for the proposed 300-acre park for the two counties – on town of Mohawk land with water and sewer services provided by the city of Johnstown – has been kicking around for years. We hope the two counties will work with the two municipalities to come up with a deal; the park could benefit a wide area.
  • Restarting rail service. Officials have been considering restarting rail service on a stretch of the abandoned FJ&G Railroad bed between Fonda and Johnstown to benefit economic development.

A site selector who toured the area last year noted 72 percent of businesses coming in want a site with rail service.

Given that the land has not been developed, the idea is feasible and worth consideration.

Both counties already are working together on a regional branding project. Let’s hope the work leaves an impression on officials that the entire region must grow in order for it to thrive.