Wayne County Commissioners Brian Smith, Joseph Adams and Jocelyn Cramer addressed the Chamber of the Northern Poconos annual meeting in January to talk about Wayne Tomorrow!
Commissioner Smith discussed how Wayne Tomorrow! began five years ago with the prior board of commissioners, including Smith, now State Rep. Jonathan Fritz and Wendell Kay. He talked about how he and Mike Uretsky, a professor from New York University, sat down for coffee and started the conversation that would become Wayne Tomorrow!
He said the natural gas industry divided the community to a certain extent, but Wayne Tomorrow! found common ground for both government agencies and nonprofit groups to work together. Smith challenged the notion that the initiative goes beyond the scope of the county commissioners. He said it’s just like picking up a piece of paper off the floor, it may not be in your job description, but picking it up is in everyone’s best interest.
Commissioner Jocelyn Cramer, who joined the board in January, highlighted the C-PACE (commercial property-assessed clean energy) program. C-PACE allows businesses to finance energy upgrades through a voluntary assessment on their county tax bill. The program, she said, allows companies to upgrade their facilities, loosen their cash flow and sell the residual debt to the next owner of the property. Learn more at the Sustainable Energy Fund.
Commissioner Adams discussed the Wayne Economic Development Fund, financed by the county for the past two years, and designed to help new and expanding businesses cover loan fees and other expenses. He said, “One hundred thousand dollars became $6 million in investments: 21 businesses; 100 new jobs. That’s what Wayne Tomorrow! is about.”
Applications are processed through the Wayne Economic Development Corp.