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Adirondack Explorer

Archive for the ‘politics’ Category

March, 2015

Avoiding A Return To The Era Of Ill Feelings


After former Governor Mario Cuomo’s death on January 1, a former colleague reminded  us that when Cuomo signed the legislation authorizing the creation of an Environmental Protection Fund on Lake Champlain in 1993, much of the tension that had on occasion erupted into violence as a result of the  restrictive recommendations of the 1990 Commission on the Adirondacks in the 21st Century, was defused. A compromise had been reached. Funds were awarded for land acquisition, but there was also money for local governments in the form of grants for infrastructure and hamlet re-development. Of » Continue Reading. The post Avoiding >>More


February, 2015

Recognizing the Adirondacks’ Hidden Diversity


Wilderness advocates in the environmental movement have known for years there is a problem when it comes to diversity and the future of the Adirondacks. We look around the backcountry on an inviting summer weekend and we see people who use, love, and defend New York’s wildest lands. But we don’t see many people of color. New York’s constitutional Forever Wild Clause is one of the most important land preservation covenants on earth. But it would only take the passage of resolutions by two consecutive state legislatures and a simple majority of New York voters at a subsequent election to >>More


February, 2015

Peter Bauer: New Criteria For Forest Preserve Amendments


Article XIV, Section 1, of the New York State Constitution states: “The lands of the state, now owned or hereafter acquired, constituting the forest preserve as now fixed by law, shall be forever kept as wild forest lands. They shall not be leased, sold or exchanged, or be taken by any corporation, public or private, nor shall the timber thereon be sold, removed or destroyed.” These words, approved by New York voters in 1894 and unchanged ever since, should be amended only under extraordinary circumstances and only to secure a clearly identified and significant public benefit. The NYCO Minerals, Inc., >>More


January, 2015

The 2015 State of State And The Adirondacks


The Adirondacks would benefit from some of the priorities expressed by Governor Andrew Cuomo in his 2015 State of the State address on Wednesday.  The proposals are expected to help protect water quality, combat invasive species, bolster APA and DEC staffing, increase the Environmental Protection Fund, expand broadband locally, and cut the risk of explosive oil trains moving through the region.  The Adirondack Park is the largest park in the contiguous United States and contains most of the motor-free wilderness remaining in the Northeast. The Adirondack related proposals outlined by Governor Cuomo include: Environmental Protection Fund: The state’s capital projects >>More


January, 2015

More On The Dave Wick Controversy: Basil Goes Fishing


By disposition, if not by design, Dave Wick is the local official least likely to become the center of a controversy. He directed Warren County’s Soil and Water Conservation program for almost twenty years and in 2012, he was recruited to succeed Mike White as the executive director of the Lake George Park Commission. Wick’s talent, a rare one, lies is combining practice with politics; engineering storm water controls, demonstrating the finer points of boat decontamination, while, at the same time, attracting and retaining the good will of elected officials and influential environmentalists. If he suffers from existential anxiety or >>More


January, 2015

Cuomo’s State Of State: Adirondack Priorities To Watch For


The Adirondack Park is a global treasure, with clean water, large unbroken forests, wildlife and 130 historic communities. All who care about the Park will be interested in what Governor Cuomo has to say in his first State of the State message and first budget proposal of his second term. Both are expected on January 21 in Albany. As we pause this year to celebrate our 40th Anniversary, the Adirondack Council is hopeful that the Governor will continue to show a strong interest in the Park’s future. Through cooperation and partnership, the Governor’s team can achieve important environmental and community >>More


December, 2014

Adirondack Wild Makes SLMP Suggestions


The advocacy group Adirondack Wild: Friends of the Forest Preserve has issued a report calling for strengthening in policy and practice under the Adirondack Park State Land Master Plan (SLMP). The Adirondack Park Agency (APA) is currently considering amendments to the SLMP, the governing document for the classification and management of constitutionally protected Forest Preserve lands within the Adirondack Park. Adirondack Wild’s report can be accessed at their website. The special report offers general thematic and specific policy, research, planning and action steps. “The Master Plan, its vision and strengths have truly stood the test of time,” Adirondack Wild’s Dave >>More


December, 2014

Commentary: Adirondack Population Decline Not Inevitable


Peter Bauer recently ran a post reviewing a report that college-educated young people are leaving rural areas in droves for “close-in” living in cities where economic opportunities, cultural amenities and entertainment options far exceed their native communities. Bauer described this as a subset of a larger dynamic, namely the decades-long global trend toward urbanization. At the conclusion of the article he asked leaders of the Park to “understand these dynamics and to develop strategies for ways to tap into these larger trends.” Adirondack leaders and residents alike have been aware of these trends for a long time, living both population >>More


November, 2014

The Story Behind The Attempt To Oust Dave Wick


It looks like Governor Andrew Cuomo and the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) did not want a mandatory invasive species boat inspection and control program on Lake George. Governor Cuomo and the DEC tried to fire Dave Wick, the executive director of the Lake George Park Commission (LGPC), and on both accounts, Cuomo and the DEC seem to have lost. On Tuesday evening, November 25th, news broke that the Cuomo Administration had backed down and agreed to suspend Wick without pay for two weeks and then let him return to his job. It apparently had nothing to do with a >>More


November, 2014

Full Adirondack Park Election Results 2014


Republican Elise Stefanik has soundly won election to the US House of Representatives. At just 30 years old, she will be the youngest women ever elected to the House, breaking a record set by 31-year-old Elizabeth Holtzman (D – Brooklyn) in 1973. With 578 of 589 districts reporting it appears that Stefanik’s Democratic challenger Aaron Woolf drew just 32 percent, and the Green Party’s Matt Funiciello, the only candidate who has been truly living in the district, garnered 11 percent. Stefanik’s opponents combined did not poll enough to top her 53 percent which should dimish the effectiveness of Democratic cries >>More