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Open Space Plan Announces Another Feeding Frenzy on Private Property Photo Gallery
Feb. 19, 2006

DEC Land Acquisition Team at Work at Beautiful Harrisburg Lake, Stony Creek, N.Y. — Unknown to the taxpaying landowners of Stony Creek and concealed from all but one member of the Town Board, land acquisition officials from DEC planned a tour of the 1,100 acre Sweet property bordering Harrisburg Lake to show the land to the DEC Region 5 Land Acquisition Advisory Committee, known as the Open Space Committee. The lake is bordered by summer and year-round homes, a resort, and privately owned land. The Sweet property is one of the largest private holdings in Stony Creek, which contains about fifty percent State-owned land.
Photo: Carol W. LaGrasse

Real Estate Agent Addresses DEC Land Acquisition Advisory Committee — Garry Nelson of Fountaine realty of Lake George described the Sweet property in the area of Harrisburg Lake, Stony Creek in Warren County, N.Y., before leading a tour on August 19, 2005. He assured the DEC and environmental groups such as the Adirondack Mountain Club and Residents Committee to Protect the Adirondacks, which are represented on the committee, that a lawyer he'd consulted was confident that a locked gate could be installed across the road through the property. However, the road is an active town highway. Photo: Carol W. LaGrasse

Town Board Member Alerted by LaGrasse Appears on the DEC Tour of Harrisburg Lake — William Liebl (left) joins that DEC Land Acquisition Advisory Committee's tour of a beautiful tract of land in the vicinity of Harrisburg Lake. The committee is dominated by DEC officials and representatives of environmental groups. Town Boards in the Adirondack region have become active in passing resolutions of opposition to additional DEC land purchases within their borders. Photo: Carol W. LaGrasse


Projected Short-Term "Evolution" of
Finger Lakes (Hector) National Forest to "Wild" North-South "Corridor"

A Wildlands Corridor in the Finger Lakes Region — In PRFA's Positions on Property of July-October 1995, this conceptual diagram for a north-south wildlife preservation corridor was the product of this writer's analysis of federal acquisition of properties (using the Trust for Public Land as the intermediary) that were then being recorded in the county records office and the then-current ownership of land by the state and federal governments. The developing wildlife protection corridor extends from the Connecticut Hill State Wildlife Area though the Finger Lakes National Forest, then along Seneca Lake and through important government-owned tracts to the federal and state Montezuma swamp preserve, and finally the short distance to Lake Ontario. The 2005 DEC Draft Open Space Conservation Plan announced two new open space conservation areas that include this corridor: the new "Emerald Necklace" open space conservation area, which includes the Finger Lakes National Forests, Greater Connecticut Hill and other areas at the headwaters of the Finger Lakes and Susquehanna, and the new "Finger Lakes Shoreline" open space conservation area. The land acquisition plan continued DEC's previous emphasis on the Montezuma swamp area.

The Nature Conservancy's Local Branch in Keene Valley in the Adirondacks
The nation's wealthiest environmental group, The Nature Conservancy, has a joint office in Keene Valley, N.Y., with the Adirondack Nature Conservancy and the Adirondack Land Trust. The work of the these three organizations is so intertwined that it is rarely possible to know where one ends and the other begins. Photo: Peter J. LaGrasse

Land Trust Joint Office: The Nature Conservancy, Adirondack Nature Conservancy, and the Adirondack Land Trust, Keene Valley, N.Y.
In an unscrutinized insider relationship with the DEC, this intertwined trio of land trusts, plus the Conservation Fund and the Open Space Institute, acquire and flip a stream of private property to State ownership for the wild Forest Preserve. Photo: Peter J. LaGrasse

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