BATAVIA — State Senate 57th District incumbent George Borrello stopped Friday afternoon to see some of the downtown businesses and chat with their owners about small business.
The Republican and Conservative candidate, running against Democrat Daniel J. Brown of Great Valley, in Cattaraugus County, said while standing on Jackson Street, outside Valle Jewelers, that 50% of the economy is supported by small businesses.
“Right now, especially, if you’re talking about the economic driver of our nation, it is small business,” he said. “If we allow the businesses to languish, not only is it going to destroy the quality of life in communities like Batavia, it’s also going to have a negative impact on our overall economy. For me, supporting all the small businesses that are the backbone of the economy is part of the mission of ensuring that new York stays strong.”
Borrello’s visit Friday was scheduled to take him to Valle Jewelers on Jackson Street; Eli Fish Brewing Co., Hunt Real Estate ERA and Adam Miller Toy & Bicycle.
Carrie Lawrence, co-owner of Valle Jewelers, said Borrello stopped to introduce himself and that he talked about the beautiful downtown.
“He made it known that he’s an advocate for small business,” she said Friday. “I just discussed with him the difficulty in hiring these days and, therefore, we decided to operate our business five days now — Tuesday through Saturday.”
Borrello said the trip was a chance for him to meet some business owners or managers he hadn’t met.
“For me, it’s about understanding the challenges and opportunities our businesses have. As a fellow business owner, that’s important to me,” He said. “Ever since my days as a county legislator, the reason I got involved in politics was because, as a small business owner, I understand the challenge. I want to make sure that government understands the challenges. New York state’s one of the worst places, if not the worst, to do business.”
To see success stories like the downtown business corridor in Batavia, Borrello said, he wanted to hear about not only the challenges the businesses face, but what they’ve done right and why it has been successful.
“This alliances that are here with businesses in the downtown region have done a great job of supporting each other, of promoting and networking, and I want to help other communities do that same thing,” he said.
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