There’s a movement taking place across the country and it’s spreading throughout the world. It’s an EcoDistrict movement. This may be a little known term for many, but if it’s successful in Rochester, the local effort could serve as a model throughout our region and the state. But what is an EcoDistrict, why do we need it and how can it really regenerate urban areas such as Rochester?

If they’re successful they can create jobs, serve as an answer to unmet needs in the market and bring about social change. In cities, they’re also a key factor for growth both in population and income. So what’s happening now in the City of Rochester to make the landscape appealing for urban entrepreneurs and is it working? In this Need to Know segment we’ll hear from Ebony Miller Wesley, Interim Director of RIT’s Center for Urban Entrepreneurship and Heidi Zimmer-Meyer, President of Rochester Downtown Development Corporation (The Commissary).

Leadership Rochester: Opening the City’s Eyes

Nov 27, 2015
Kelly Mullaney

Rochester native Bob Duffy has been a busy and versatile man over his career, going from Rochester police chief and mayor, to lieutenant governor of New York state, and now head of the Rochester Business Alliance. Before all of that, however, Duffy was a graduate of Leadership Rochester, a program that gave him some useful perspective.

We examine the future of red light cameras in Rochester. The program was extended in the past year, and Mayor Warren has asked for a long-term study. Initial reviews, according to the city, indicate that the cameras are working as intended. And now drivers who have unpaid red-light tickets can have their cars locked down by a wheel boot. We debate the program with our guests:

  • Jim McIntosh, Rochester city engineer
  • T. Andrew Brown, Rochester city attorney
  • Lawrence Krieger, attorney who has challenged the red-light camera system

READ/LISTEN: 2015 State of the County Address

Jun 10, 2015

Monroe County Executive Maggie Brooks delivered her final State of the County address at Irondequoit High School on Wednesday night. Listen to the entire address by clicking the play button below, or read the entire address.

This Friday is the third poverty simulation with the goal to help people better understand the kinds of challenges those in poverty face. The thinking is that those who want to solve poverty should understand it first. Here in Rochester, a majority of children are living in poverty. The United Way is helping to convene the event, and our guests from the United Way will discuss the simulation and what participants hope to takeaway from it:

  • Fran Weisberg, president and CEO, United Way of Greater Rochester
  • Dawn Borgeest, director of marketing and community investment, United Way

A police officer in South Carolina is charged with murder after video shows him shooting an unarmed black man in the back. What now? How did we get here?

The Young Democrats of Monroe County are holding a Community Policing Forum on Monday. The purpose of the event is to highlight the initiatives the Rochester Police Department has implemented under the Warren administration (reorganization, Clergy on Patrol, etc) but also allow the community to directly ask questions to those leaders. Will the reorganization work? Has the RPD taken the right steps to build a strong relationship with local neighborhoods? We ask our guests:

  • Chief Michael Ciminelli, Rochester Police Department 
  • Captain Lloyd Cuyler, RPD Goodman Section
  • Cynthia Herriott-Sullivan, CEO, Rise Up Rochester
  • Gary Pudup, retired sheriff's deputy and former Genesee Valley ACLU executive director, 
  • Tom Morissey, Monroe County Young Democrats communications chair 

In Rochester, city leaders want to launch new worker-owned businesses in some of the poorest neighborhoods. Their goal is to create reliable jobs, and to eventually build wealth where there currently is none. It's an idea that has shown some promise in other cities. We'll learn more about how it could work in Rochester with our guests:

In the first meeting of the Rochester Anti-Poverty Task Force, members of the community provided a context justifying the existence of such a coalition. Leaders of institutions throughout the city, private and public, volunteer and for-profit, brought up some of the ugliest attributes of the city and laid out the barriers to prosperity faced by a third of Rochester residents every day.

Veronica Volk / WXXI

The Rochester Community Coalition unveils its yearly agenda. Local leaders say their plans stem from six specific areas of importance:

  • Equity for Local Government
  • Supporting Working Families
  • Strengthening Education
  • Creating Jobs through Innovation
  • Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council Priority Projects
  • Investing in Infrastructure  

President of the Rochester Business Alliance Bob Duffy says all of the points boil down to the same basic premise: job creation is the key to economic prosperity.