There was an interesting and informative discussion of regional issues at the annual County Executives Forum at Dominican College on Thursday, June 7, 2018, which featured County leaders from Bergen, Orange, Rockland, and Westchester Counties.
Bergen County Executive Joseph Tedesco III said that his County is experiencing growth near transportation. “While we were traditionally a real suburban community, with the advent of the millennials wanting to be closer to transportation hubs, that is now moving up into Bergen County,” he said. Tedesco is pushing for an expansion of light rail into the east side of the County.
Orange County Executive Steve Neuhaus is particularly proud of the growth at Stewart Airport. “Stewart Airport is booming. Norwegian Airlines has double the amount of flights that are coming out of there. You’ve got direct flights to Ireland, Scotland and Norway,” he said. Neuhaus added that by the end of the year, there may be direct flights to Germany, London, and Paris as well.
Rockland County Executive Ed Day stressed that his focus has been on righting the County’s fiscal ship, economic development, and preserving Rockland. “I’ve tried every step of the way to stay loyal to those three tenets that I ran on because frankly that’s what people voted for and I think that’s what they deserve,” he said.
Westchester’s advantages of being close to New York City with three direct train lines also mean more pressure on housing prices, according to Westchester County Executive George Latimer. He said the high cost of housing is one of Westchester’s biggest challenges.
The four County Executives also answered questions from business leaders in attendance, including questions about ethics, taxes, and transportation.
The Palisades Institute was created in 1990 as part of Dominican College to serve business, government, and not-for-profit organizations in Rockland and nearby counties. The Institute encourages professionals to integrate the concepts of leadership, quality, and ethics to achieve long-term success.