Property Rights Foundation of America®
Founded 1994

Memories are short

TO THE EDITOR: Memories are short in the Adirondacks.

In May 1990, then-Governor Mario Cuomo released the recommendations of the Commission on the Adirondacks in the Twenty-first Century.

The formidable 245 recommendations for the future of the Adirondack region included such horrors as 2,000-acre per house zoning, retroactive shielding (invisibility) of houses from roadways and from waterways so shallow that they are only navigable by canoe, redistricting of every state bureaucracy so that agencies from welfare to the transportation would be bounded by the Blue Line (the "Indian Reservation" recommendation), a new super-agency with a name reminiscent of the National Park Service combining the powers of the DEC and APA (Adirondack Park Agency) and a plan to acquire 654,850 acres of private lands to convert them to wild lands owned by the government.

The plan was accompanied by a map showing the properties to be acquired. The map got people — many of whom saw their land cross-hatched for acquisition — so riled up that they protested on Interstate 87, the Northway, bringing traffic to a crawl from Essex County to Albany.

One member of the commission, Robert Flacke of Lake George, a former APA chairman and DEC commissioner, did the honorable thing. Before the report came out, he issued a Minority Report in opposition, releasing it to the press to warn the people and property owners of the Adirondack region about what was afoot. Legislation to implement the recommendations had already been silently circulated in the legislature. Mr. Flacke shined the light on the agenda that would have spelled incalculable loss to the Adirondack region.

But in addition to Robert Flacke and the environmental extremist Chairman, Peter A. A. Berle, there were 12 other commission members. None of these spoke out against the outrageous recommendations.

One of the other commission members was SUNY Syracuse College of Environmental Science and Forestry Professor Ross Whaley, who has just been nominated to head the APA, pending approval by the Senate.

Property Rights Foundation of America
Stony Creek

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