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What Is Your Business Outlook for 2024?

Now that the year is underway, here’s what a few area business leaders think about it

By Deborah Jeanne Sergeant


“We are expecting 2024 to be strong in several ways. There are lots of project opportunities in the public and private sector for planning, engineering and construction. The federal and state funding is as strong as it’s ever been, so that will drive some work for us. Our team is strong and ready to get a lot of stuff done.”

  — John Camp, President and chief operating officer, C&S Companies, Syracuse


“We’re in a growth phase as a community. It’s a new way to look at life. We’re not used to it growing quickly and having people move here. An estimated 100,000 people are moving here. That’s a lot of people. We’ll be getting used to delays for construction and traffic. That will change our life. But higher wages and investment are positive changes. No one in this generation has experienced this. It’s growth on the level of the Erie Canal. Even rural areas will see growth. It’s part of a mindset change. Housing is something we’ll need more of. Schools will see increases in students. It reminds people that these investments are fantastic,
but it changes things.”

  — Randy Wolken, President, Manufacturing Association of Central New York


“The Central New York economy is healthy and is in a very strong position. Job growth continues in the region as unemployment rates remain low and the local labor force is expanding. Many upcoming local projects are underway that will continue to create job opportunities for the region’s workforce. Central New York’s employers are actively recruiting workers across a broad spectrum of industries, occupations and educational-skill levels.”

  — Karen Knapik-Scalzo, Labor market analyst, New York State Department of Labor Division of Research & Statistics, Syracuse


“As we embrace the uncertainties and promises of a new year, the real estate market in 2024 appears to be a complex tapestry of challenges and opportunities. Anticipating the trends that will shape the coming months involves a careful examination of factors such as inventory shortages, market dynamics, interest rates and the resilience of the commercial real estate sector.”

—  William R Galloway, Licensed real estate broker Century 21 Galloway Realty, Oswego


“Every single day is very exciting. It’s a fast-paced, growing industry and we’re considered an industry leader. I’m being shipped off to conferences to speak because most people buy drones and they’re advertised as though they can fly themselves but there’s so much more involved. They wonder why they get bad performance. We’re the ones writing the playbook. There’s no real guides currently on how to do this. The people who make the drones contact me about how I’m doing these operations.”

  — Rick Jordan, Owner, CNY Drone Services, Clinton


“I expect the year will go the way we plan it to go. As the year unfolds and we are moving in a specific direction that is unplanned, we should be flexible enough to adjust our sails. Keeping an eye on our resources and our funds will be key in things ‘going as planned’ or knowing when to adjust.”

  — Debbie Bilello, Virtual Office Solutions, Central Square


“Interest rates have come down slightly, if they continue to do so I expect this year to be a good year for real estate. People are anxious to buy. A positive factor for our area is the Micron effect.  Builders and investors are just starting to act upon future possibilities. I’m excited about the economic changes coming to our area with the arrival of Micron. Micron will create lots of jobs and bring lots of people to the area. Those people will all need housing. Whether they are looking in Oswego County, Onondaga County or other surrounding counties, we are looking forward to the opportunities that I believe are going to come. So, how do I think this year is going to go? I think it’s going to be a year filled with opportunities for Central New Yorkers.

  — Leah Haggerty, Owner, Century 21 Leah’s Signature, Fulton


“I think it’s going to go really well. New business is turning up. The hotel is now a long-term stay venue. I think it’s been going well as it attracts nurses and doctors who are working at the hospitals and plant workers. It changed over from the Beacon Hotel in July 2022 to executive suites. It’s for professionals traveling for work.”

  — Julie Avery, General manager, Beacon Executive Suites, Oswego


“We expect a good year and are looking forward to it. There will be some big changes to our deck for customers to look forward to. And we are booking parties every day. Our menu is expanding and we are introducing several new dishes, so all in all, we are looking forward to this year.”

  — Sue Ryan, Owner, Tavern on the Lock, Fulton


“While we struggle to find good, qualified news reporters to fill out our staff, the outlook is strong, our readership is solid. Financially, we are starting out 2024 very strong.”

  — Fred Reed, President Dot Publishing, Inc., and


“We have received positive affirmations about or new exhibits with an increase in visitors to the Safe Haven Holocaust Refugee Shelter Museum. Our 80th commemoration of the arrival of the former refugees to Oswego in August will be a positive draw.”

  — Judy Rapaport, Acting president, Safe Haven, Oswego


“I expect 2024 to be the same as 2023. We are in for a busy year again and I’d love to see pricing of materials and fuel lower and interest rates fall.”

  — Tony Pauldine, Owner, Anthony M. Pauldine General Contractor, Inc., Curtis Manor, Gosek Electric, Oswego Rental Properties, Oswego


“We already have seen an increase in travel booked for 2024 and don’t see it slowing down. Our expectations for this year are to keep up with the demand and to hire another in-house travel consultant in the coming months.”

  — Sandy Shue, Manager, Canalview Travel Service, Inc., Fulton


“As far as the tax season is going, we are still unable to e-file New York returns. But I am able to data enter, calculate and print the entire return. Hopefully New York will get its act together!”

  — Bill Symons, Accountant, Canale Insurance and Accounting, Oswego and Fulton


“Our 2024 focus is personalized, no-cost small business counseling. At WISE WBC, we understand the importance of personalized support for small business owners. We will continue to offer no-cost, one-on-one counseling sessions tailored to the unique needs and challenges of each woman entrepreneur we work with. Our experienced counselors will provide guidance, advice, and mentorship to help women navigate the complexities of business ownership and achieve their goals. WISE WBC is committed to offering high-impact training programs designed to empower women entrepreneurs with the skills and knowledge needed to succeed in today’s competitive business landscape. Our programs will focus on providing practical and actionable training in areas such as business management, marketing strategies, financial management and technology integration, equipping participants with the tools they need to thrive. We recognize the importance of reaching, supporting, and connecting women entrepreneurs in underserved areas. WISE WBC is committed to building strong relationships and networks in these communities, ensuring that women have access to the resources and support they need to succeed. Through outreach efforts, partnerships with local organizations and targeted programming, we will continue to expand our reach and impact in underserved areas.”

  — Meghan Florkowski, Director, WISE Women’s Business Center, Syracuse


“Chuck Chaisson has been taking care of Oswego for more than 15 years. We’re growing each year. We’re keeping up with Oswego. We are participating contractors with New York State Clean Heat Program, an incentive to help people to go toward clean, electric heat. We can help people go for the latest trend in heating. We can help people with 10- to 15-year-old equipment and new, modern equipment.”

  — Nathanial Hohman, Manager, Chaisson’s Heating and Air Conditioning, Oswego