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The Adirondack Explorer is a nonprofit magazine covering the Adirondack Park's environment, recreation and communities.

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    • AG says

      all i hear is “development, development”…. but aside from logging – isn’t tourism the big money maker in the Adirondacks??? Most tourists – like myself – don’t want to travel somewhere that is developed “like everywhere else”…. the whole point of visiting up there is because it’s “wilderness”. what kind of industry do you think will flourish in your area?? I’m curious.

      • backcountryoutlaw says

        We have very abundant natural resources. Timber could be harvested, rivers could be damed for Hyrdo, more second homes could be allowed if not for the crazy APA zoning. Mining,..industry historically develops near the resource. We used to have all sorts of sawmills, papermills, etc…this created lots of jobs. Now the APA keeps us in poverty. Let the Free Market system be Free and Fair…

        • AG says

          There is no such thing as “free and fair” in the markets… they always play favorites. Look at the Hudson Valley to your south… it became reforested not because of the government… but because after industry took all of the natural resources out of it – they decided to move on… That’s what happens with natural resources… the same thing that makes an area “rich” once its depleted will make it poor again… unless the environment is completely altered to become urbanized. Clean water is and will become one of the most important commodities as the population of the world grows bigger… That’s one of the main reasons development is stunted in the ADK – the same as in the Catskill region.. It is IMPOSSIBLE to develop without adversely affecting the water quality. Do you know how expensive it is to build the filtration to meet federal drinking standards in urban areas? The “market” says its more important cost effective the drinking supply for millions of ppl than to allow it to be tainted in some way.

        • Marvelous Marv says

          You are way off Dude. Ever heard of Adam Smith? The Dude never made mentioned polluting the water. Just letting them use the natural resources. Lots of water lets make some electricity. Ever see how clear the water is at grand Cooley?

  1. Paul says

    Phil, It sounds like efforts have been made to alter the regulations and the consensus was that they were restrictive enough. If there are going to be changes that has to come from a consensus decision not something spearheaded by environmental groups like this new effort. Here you not only have resistance from the local communities but resistance from the APA as well. This is just squeaky wheels that keep on squeaking. You see the same old cast of characters. If anything is going to happen it has to be done by some new folks. Otherwise I think it is safe to say that maybe the people who made the original compromises actually got it right.

  2. backcountryoutlaw says

    Agreed Paul, or by a second generation environmental extremist. New face, same name, next generation trying to keep Adirondack nativies in poverty. Abolish the APA!

  3. Allen Swiglertzer says

    I live in New Jersey and come to the Adirondacks because it still has a wild character. Don’t wish to abolish what makes your area so special.

    • Paul says

      Allen, The APA approves almost every single application they get. I don’t see how that has much effect on the wild character of the park.

      • backcountryoutlaw says

        Paul are you crazy! The mere existence of the APA and its regs stifles development, or as this gumba calls it “wild character”. Even though they approve most projects it costs us a crazy amount to file and the development restrictions are way to tight.

        • backcountryoutlaw says

          Good Man glad You see the light. The APA is a hidderance evn if they are approving most projects. Think about how many more there would be if there was no APA application or regs. APA means no jobs no development.

        • Allen Swiglertzer says

          I am actually from Alabama but moved here for work about 15 years ago. I hope to retire to the ADKS. So I am more a Gumbo than a Gumba!

      • Allen Swiglertzer says

        I am not going to pretend I know how it all works but I love the quaint small towns like North Creek, Schroon Lake and Pottersville, all intermingled with the pristine lakes and mountains. While all things need fine tuning what you have in place appears to be working from an outsiders persepective. The towns I see seem vibrant and healthy compared to the small towns I see in the rural south.

  4. Phil says

    Paul, the Adirondack Council is saying they want to open a dialogue on how to better protect open space. I don’t suppose you would oppose that. Also, local leaders say they want to keep working forests in production rather than see them developed. So that is common ground for modifying laws or regulations.

    • Paul says

      Phil, I am not opposed at all. I am just saying that it seems like we have had this dialogue before. I was suggesting that it might find more traction with a new cast but I doubt it. Unfortunately working forests appear to be a casualty of the timber markets. The only model that may still be viable is smaller working forests that are what you might call the “gentlemans forest” similar to what we see happening to agricultural lands. Something where timber production is linked to other land uses. The answer is not to simply limit possibilities like this by restricting use even more.

    • Paul says

      Also, the Adirondack council can be reasonable. I have seen other groups say they are not really interested in dialogue but rather reengaging in a “war” (whatever that means?). That is unproductive rhetoric if you ask me.

  5. Phil says

    Paul, the story discusses conservation easements and transferable development rights as two tools to help working forests. If forestry industry is struggling in the Adirondacks, all the more reason to try them out … and perhaps others.

    • Paul says

      I think that conservation easements IF they can be coupled with recreational leasing (and this doesn’t have to mean to hunting clubs only, paddlers can also join these clubs if they wanted) are one way that working forests could possibly be preserved longer term. When you look at the economics of it the lease revenue is required to help pay the taxes on these properties and to even supplement the income from timber harvesting when markets are soft like now. Efforts to restore recreational lease revenue to the former Champion lands was opposed by some environmental groups. If these groups are going to be opposed to doing what needs to be done to preserve these working forest easements that doesn’t make for a very good dialogue to help solve some of these problems.

      As for TDR, to date, environmental groups also seem opposed to these mechanisms.

  6. TiSentinel65 says

    What Brian Houseal stated a few days ago should sum up what the environmental adgenda is for the Adirondacks. He stated how good it was to have vast acreage where there are no people. What I take from this is the members of the Adirondack Coucil would like a monoply of state land to be enjoyed by the few remaining people of the environmental groups. After all the people who have lived here for generations surely can’t appreciate what they have. The solution is to deny development a chance to take hold . If they can limit what you can do to your land, they have friends who will take it off your hands, it will be much easier to limit the amount of people here. Have family you would like to leave acreage to, to build a house and raise a future family? Too bad. We have density limits to make sure you can’t let your families flourish. Need jobs that can help you afford the high taxes of living here, all because idiots down in Albany are drunk with land purchases. Sorry bout that. The APA will make sure it is a convoluted process with years going by without anything being done. You just keep laying off your teachers and let them pot holes on your roads get bigger. By the way, You won’t be needing many teachers. With less people and all. The APA is worthless waste of time and money. A dinosaur whose time has come to go the way of the dinosaur. Anybody that praises the APA is only looking out for their own sefish agenda. The people that wrote the APA act and their supporters are thieves who should be treated as such. These people have for years justified the end run around democracy, Yes thats right DEMOCRACY, where by people elect the people that govern them. Not the puppets up in Ray Brook that are appointed to do the environmental lobbies bidding. It is time to show these people the door.

    • Allen Swiglertzer says

      “A dinosaur whose time has come to go the way of the dinosaur”…your prose and diction are so exquisite! Please submit this to the NY Times editorial.

      • backcountryoutlaw says

        Do you feel like a big brainy big shot you intelectual jerk. Go starch your collar before going to your job on Wall street. We dont need carpet baggers like you coming to the ADKS anyway. Adirondacks for Adirondackers! If only we were allowed to utilize the natural resources in the area we would never need you tourons.

  7. Tom Murphy says

    Thank you for trying to show both sides of this issue.

    If I understand it correctly, a full build out in compliance with existing rules and regulations is approximately more 156k homes.

    As a basic principle, I would favor the state buying the land or buying the development rights over further limiting property rights.

    It is private property.

  8. Allen Swiglertzer says

    How will the Adirondack economy change as the climate more resembles higher elevation North Carolina and Virginia?

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