Picente Delivers 2021 State of the County

Addresses Post-COVID-19 Recovery, Revitalization & Growth

Oneida County Executive Anthony J. Picente Jr. delivered his 2021 State of the County address today in a video presentation that laid out the vision and execution of how the county will recover, revitalize and grow in a post-COVID-19 world.

While Picente discussed the county’s extensive response to the COVID-19 pandemic over the past year, and the efforts that continue on a daily basis, his focus was on the path forward and the bright future that lies ahead for Oneida County.

“These last 12 months have been challenging for everyone to say the least, but through it all, we channeled our history as a people, determined not to let this or any crisis define us,” Picente said. “Our goals and vision should not be based on how this pandemic will impact us, but rather how we will continue to invest, build and grow a better Oneida County for generations to come.”

“COVID has taken much from us, but it cannot take away our spirit to move this community forward,” he added “It cannot take away how far we have come and I refuse to let it rob us of a future that we’ve fought so hard to secure. Good days remain ahead and together we will get there.”

Picente announced several programs and initiatives aimed at the county’s post pandemic recovery, revitalization and growth, including:

  • The first-in-the-nation Boost Oneida County program, which will provide incentive for vaccination and support local small businesses by using app-based technology to distribute federal recovery money directly into the hands of residents.
  • Forming a committee of the county’s religious leaders to plan a COVID-19 memorial.
  • Developing a food emporium in the county’s refurbished REA Wing at Union Station in Utica that will feature high-quality selections of artisan and ethnic products, freshly made prepared foods and local products.
  • A long-term Main Street revitalization plan that will work as a 50-50 match with the county and local municipalities and include complete street designs, parking, streetscapes, façade programs, public space design and entrance way development.
  • Assessing the availability and reliability of the broadband services to bring the internet to every corner of the county.
  • Leveraging the partnership between the county, the City of Rome and Mohawk Valley EDGE to install the high-tech infrastructure necessary to form a “smart city” in the Woodhaven corridor.
  • Capitalizing on the county’s partnership with Cree-Wolfspeed to convert 50% of the county government fleet to electric vehicles by 2031 and update the county’s electric vehicle charging station plan.

The State of the County address, normally delivered as a speech to a live audience, was canceled last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Picente presented this year’s State of the County as a video that was broadcast on television and posted online.

It can be viewed in its entirety here: https://youtu.be/erL9HU0BUBY.

The text from the speech is also available here: https://ocgov.net/sites/default/files/exec/2021/State%20of%20the%20County%202021.pdf