Thursday, July 24, 2008

In the 'Truth in Labeling' Dept . . . .

A couple stories this week were interesting more for their labels than their content.

Utica region in running for nanotech support jobs -- Was it a slip calling us the "Utica" region, or is the OD finally becoming sensitive to the fact that we need to properly label ourselves if we want to be found on a map?

It was probably a slip . . .
One of the state university system’s leading nanotechnology officials said Monday that Albany intends for the Mohawk Valley to benefit from plans for a 120,000-square-foot semiconductor packaging facility.
At least the state official seems to understand the significance of accurate labels:
“We are focused on building the relationship to make sure that the Utica-Rome area hopefully gets a significant portion, if not the lion’s share, of the contractor and supplier jobs that will support the facility,” said Alain Kaloyeros, chief executive officer of the College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering at the University of Albany.
"Utica-Rome" . . . now that's more like it (and accurate). But read the tea leaves . . . the plant itself will not be in Utica-Rome.

* * *
Marketing the Mohawk River corridor -- Oneida County officials are developing a "Comprehensive Greenway Plan for the Mohawk River Corridor" from Sylvan Beach to Utica, to develop and market environmental and historic sites along the Mohawk River and Erie Canal. A meeting will take place 6:30 tonight at Rome City Hall to inform the public about the project.
Today’s meeting serves a dual purpose of outlining what has already been done, as well as drawing greater interest from the public, said Andrew Schrauth of Peter J. Smith & Company, which was hired to study and oversee the planning of the project. . . .

Fred Miller, executive director of the Mohawk Valley Heritage Corridor Commission, attended a public meeting on the project earlier this year and said he agrees with its goals.

But, he questioned why the project’s name included the Mohawk River instead of just Oneida County.

“I will strongly request that they not miss-brand the 150 mile, historic Mohawk River with a name for a 25 mile or so pathway between Utica and Rome,” Miller said in an e-mail.

Schrauth said he eventually hopes to incorporate all communities along the Mohawk River into the project.
Mr. Miller is upset because his organization truly covers the entire Mohawk Valley! If you were in his shoes, you would think Oneida County was infringing on your turf. Mr. Schrauth, on the other hand, seems to have ambitions that extend beyond Oneida County. (Mr. Schrauth's company, by the way, does a lot of business for the Town of New Hartford.)

This may give a bit of insight into why some local organizations may have abandoned more accurate place labels for a "Mohawk Valley" brand . . . and why others may be offended.

[Gear presents another aspect of this particular story in the Snakepit.]


Anonymous said...

Watch this YouTube video from the O-D, and watch the comments from former Mayor Carl Eilenberg. He never once mentions the "Mohawk Valley" but mentions "Utica's" boilermaker and "Rome's" Honor America Days while ending with how great it is for "Utica and Rome."

This is someone that understands that it is in fact the Utica-Rome area, NOT the Mohawk Valley.


Strikeslip said...

Excellent point -- Yes, Mr. Eilenberg GETS IT!