Fort Drum Soldiers

Our History

On September 11, 1984, the U.S. Department of the Army announced that it was stationing the newly activated 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry) at Fort Drum, New York. There was a recognized need for leadership to foster the development of infrastructure and housing to support the largest population expansion in the North Country. As a result, on June 26, 1985, under Section 8, Title 29, of the public authorities law the Development Authority of the North Country was created by the New York State legislature.

As stated by its enabling legislation, the Development Authority was created to institute a comprehensive, coordinated program of economic development activities in Jefferson, Lewis, and St. Lawrence Counties, which surround the United States Army base at Fort Drum, in order to provide the region with the capability to effectively plan and develop the infrastructure needs of the region required by the population increase due to the expansion at Fort Drum. The Development Authority is notable among public authorities in New York State because it serves multiple purposes - to address the infrastructure needs and promote economic development in the North Country.

Another distinctive characteristic of the Development Authority is the composition of its board of directors. Unlike other state authorities, our board is comprised of eight voting members appointed by the governing bodies of Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence counties and the City of Watertown, and five non-voting members appointed by the Governor, NYS Assembly and Senate. The board of directors provides oversight and guidance to the executive director.

Today the Development Authority operates a solid waste management facility, water and wastewater facilities, an open access telecom network, and administers several business and housing loan programs.

Our Mission

The mission of the Development Authority of the North Country is to serve the common interests of Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence Counties by providing technical services and infrastructure, which will enhance economic opportunities in the region and promote the health and well being of its communities.

Performance Measurements

  • Meet or exceed Federal, State and local regulatory requirements.
  • Meet or exceed Federal, State and local safety requirements.
  • Manage the Authority's assets in a prudent and fiscally responsible manner.
  • Operate transparently and with accountability to partners and general public.
  • Encourage environmental stewardship and advance as a more sustainable organization
  • Provide regional initiatives and partnerships that provide value added services to communities. 
  • Promote and sustaine MWBE initiatives for economic growth.
  • Utilize new technology for the efficient delivery of operations and services.

Our Principles


We will be honest and responsible in dealing with customers, suppliers, partners and coworkers.


We will strive to protect, conserve and enhance the health and well being of our region, for current and future generations.

Quality and Excellence

We will provide services that meet or exceed the needs and expectations of our customers. We will listen to our customers and pursue improvement and innovation in all our operations.


People are the key to our success and our most important resource. Our employees will have equal opportunity in an environment that fosters communications and continuous improvement through employee involvement. We will treat our employees the way we expect them to treat our customers.

Leadership and Accountability

We will identify opportunities that will benefit our customers and partners, and will focus our resources to take advantage of those opportunities. We will be accountable and responsible - individually and as an organization - for our actions and results.


We will work collectively and cooperatively with our coworkers and customers to achieve together what we could not achieve alone.


We will maintain the highest level of fiscal responsibility and trust in our dealings.

Fort Drum Soldiers

Since 1984, the 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry), with its soldiers and their families, have become an integral part of the fabric of the North Country and a driving force behind our economy.