Thompson Initiatives Abound From Green Expos To Darwin-Martin To The Niagara Falls Train Station.
Imagine the establishment of a Green Initiative Institute in Buffalo that would offer grants to green entrepreneurs while serving as an all-purpose business incubator for up and coming green enterprises?
Fortunately, before long none of us will have to use our imaginations to conjure up such a vision, thanks to a $2 million appropriation secured by Buffalo/Niagara Falls NYS Senator Antoine Thompson.
"There are going to be only two of these Green Initiative Institutes, one on Long Island and one in Buffalo," he reports. "The result will be that business people who live in Buffalo or Niagara Falls who have an idea for a green business enterprise that is commercially viable will have a place to go to apply for grants, share ideas, and get other help that will hopefully turn their green initiative into a success."
Of course the Senator's status as Chairman of the NYS Senate Environmental Committee couldn't have hurt when it came to deciding where these Green Initiative Institutes would be located.
In fact, far from being a newcomer to the Environmental Movement, Senator Thompson has been holding events that encourage green entrepreneurs for years. His annual Green Expos for environmentally conscious entrepreneurs have grown exponentially, from their first incarnation in the Main Place Mall in Buffalo to a much larger second version held in the Walden Galleria in Cheektowaga.
"Participation in these Green Expos has doubled from the first year to the second," he reports. "Obviously, interest in green technology is increasing because people understand as I do that it is the key to the economic development of the future for WNY."
Still, traditional projects can't be ignored either.
"While high tech is important, we also have to fund more traditional projects, such as keeping the Delaware Park Ring Rd. maintained for hikers and runners who are now using it more than ever," he adds. "We have also been able to secure $4 million for the Darwin-Martin House and we are continuing to fund projects to improve and maintain Martin Luther King Park as well as Broderick Park and the Black Rock Canal Park at the foot of Ontario, spending $500,000 on this initiative, $300,000 this year."
Meanwhile in Niagara Falls...
"I have also been able to secure a lot of funding for Niagara Falls including money for roof repairs for the John Duke Center in Hyde Park as well as work on the Niagara Falls Train Station and the Niagara Arts and Cultural Cener," he adds. "Obviously, Niagara Falls is an international center for tourism and it is very important that its facilities be maintained and enhanced. All of these projects are crucial to maintaining and improving the quality of life for our people here in the Buffalo/Grand Island/Niagara Falls area as well as improving opportunities for job creation."
And, all of this in addition to doing all he can to improve education and access to quality health care for all of all.
"I love this job because it gives me the opportunity to help people," Senator Thompson concludes. "To me serving the people of WNY is the best job in the world