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Oneida County launches Reconnect Oneida County program, seeking to recruit remote workers

By Eric Reinhardt (ereinhardt@cnybj.com)

Date:

UTICA, N.Y. — Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente Jr. on Monday unveiled his Reconnect Oneida County initiative that seeks to attract remote workers to live and work in the area and catalyze the growth of the region.

The goal of Reconnect Oneida County is to make Oneida County a “premiere destination” for remote workers. The first target is to attract individuals who were born and raised regionally to return home by leveraging the area’s assets and showcasing its high tech opportunities and high and affordable quality of life

Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente Jr. (File photo provided by Oneida County)

“This pandemic has not only altered our daily life, it has dramatically changed the way businesses are utilizing their workforces,” Picente said in a Monday news release. “We can build on our growth by seizing upon this shift, such as the ability for people to work remotely from anywhere. Oneida County is poised to serve all of their needs and provide the ideal place to live, work and play.”

Partnering with the Mohawk Valley Community College thINCubator; the Air Force Research Lab (AFRL) Information Directorate; and the Griffiss Institute, the county will “highlight amenities attractive” to the remote worker by creating a niche marketing campaign and website detailing the program and promoting the region.

“I believe that many of the people who left our area over the past decade for education or opportunity, will be excited by our tremendous progress and the chance to reconnect – proving you can [come] home again,” Picente said.

Reconnect Oneida County will utilize “hand-picked hometown ambassadors” who will work with potential applicants to connect them with the region’s “growing intellectual and high tech assets;” assist in relocation services; identify possible financial incentives; and engage them with “desirable” co-working space that will enable them to “link up with like-minded individuals.”

“We’re thrilled to see Oneida County launch this program to highlight the area’s outstanding innovation resources and business culture,” Frank DuRoss, MVCC vice president for community development & executive director of the MVCC Foundation, said. “The Oneida County community’s incredible vibrancy and cultural diversity was a major inspiration that led us to launch the thINCubator in the center of downtown Utica – and today, we’re proud to offer a world-class work experience that matches the area’s richness of life and recreation opportunities.

The next phase of Reconnect Oneida County will target workers from “high-growth” industry clusters found in other states, which are also growing in the Mohawk Valley, and recruit those who have the ability to work remotely to move here, per the news release.

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