Chamber Corner

Panama and Clymer districts provide leadership


President and CEO of the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce & Executive Director of the Manufacturers Association of the Southern Tier

Kudos to the Panama and Clymer Central School districts! The approval of a shared superintendent between the two districts is an idea that makes perfect sense and can set a positive example for others in our region.

These two districts have found a way to create a meaningful shared services agreement. By pooling resources on a superintendent, each district will save an estimated $50,000 to $60,000 a year. That is a true savings, with no impact on programs whatsoever. Bert Lictus, who is currently the Panama Central School Superintendent, will become the superintendent for both districts effective Oct. 26.

We wish both of these districts well as this process moves forward. Each district has said that this will be an experimental process for them. Even with what must be some trepidation as they try out this new venture, these school boards had the courage to take a step towards savings. We sincerely applaud their efforts.

Each local school district should remain focused on providing the best educational environment and offering the most opportunity for its students. Reducing administrative costs can certainly help to maintain vital educational and extracurricular programs. We encourage all school districts in Chautauqua County to continue seeking productive change that can reduce costs while still preserving their important work of educating future generations.

Chamber Awards Banquet honors leaders

Each year the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce Annual Awards Banquet pays tribute to the hard work and dedication of many individuals and organizations that make positive contributions in our communities.

This year’s event will honor County Executive Greg Edwards as Person of the Year; Lake Shore Savings Bank with the Economic Development Award. The six Community Chambers of Commerce will present Community Service Awards as follows: Dunkirk, Doug Fenton; Fredonia, Tim Eades; Hanover, Matt Bogosian; Jamestown, Terry Frank and Dennis Webster; Mayville-Chautauqua, Access Channel 5; and Westfield-Barcelona, Nancy Hanks.

Everyone in Chautauqua County is invited to join us in saluting these very deserving award winners during the Chamber’s Annual Awards Banquet, which will be held Thursday, Oct. 17 at the Williams Center on the SUNY Fredonia campus. This event is sponsored by: DFT Communications, Lake Erie Regional Health System of NY, Liazon Corp., the OBSERVER, The Post-Journal, and the SUNY Fredonia. Reservations are required. You can register online at or call the Chamber at 366-6200 or 484-1101.

Health insurance informational and enrollment meetings

With significant changes on the horizon in health insurance, the Chamber has invested time and resources to become knowledgeable about the Affordable Care Act and how it may impact your business and your employees. The Chamber will provide a series of open meetings to discuss not only its own Bright Choices Exchange options, but additional options available through the New York State Public Exchange as well.

These sessions will serve as Open Enrollment meetings for current subscribers, and also as informational sessions for any other business – Chamber members and non-members alike. They are being sponsored by Blackstone Business Enterprises, Health Republic, KeyBank, and Univera. The meetings are scheduled throughout the county as follows:

Tuesday, Oct. 1 at 7:30 a.m. in Sarita Weeks Room, JCC, Jamestown

Tuesday, Oct. 1 at 5:30 p.m. in Sarita Weeks Room, JCC, Jamestown

Thursday, Oct. 3 at 7:30 a.m. at the SUNY Fredonia Technology Incubator, Central Avenue, Dunkirk

Thursday, Oct. 3 at 5:30 p.m. at the SUNY Fredonia Technology Incubator, Central Avenue, Dunkirk

Tuesday, Oct. 8 at 5:30 p.m. at KeyBank, 369 East Fairmount Ave., Lakewood

Wednesday, Oct. 9 at 7:30 a.m. at Tom’s Family Restaurant, 935 Routes 5 & 20, Irving

Wednesday, Oct. 9 at 5:30 p.m. at the Chautauqua Marina, 104 W. Lake Road, Mayville

Thursday, Oct. 10 at 7:30 a.m. at Community Bank, 1982 East Main St., Falconer

Thursday, Oct. 10 at 5:30 p.m. at Fredonia Place, 50 Howard St., Fredonia

Friday, Oct. 11 at 7:30 a.m. at Eason Hall, 20 Elm St., Westfield

The Chamber of Commerce is committed to helping you identify the health insurance plan that best meets your needs. If you have questions give us a call at 716-366-6200 or 716-484-1101 or e-mail