The Adirondack Council published our annual State of the Park Report today, covering the year 2014. It is a comprehensive and informative review of the local, state and federal government actions affecting the largest park in the contiguous United States.
You won’t find anything like this for other major American parks. We believe that the Adirondack Park is a special place, deserving of special attention.
Long time Adirondack Council members may be scratching their heads about the release of our State of the Park report just a day or two after Labor Day. Normally, our annual review of the actions of local, state and federal officials comes out in October.
This year, we decided to complete the report a month early to give our members the information they need to judge the efforts of any candidates who may be on the ballot for primary elections, normally held in mid-September. Up for election this year are the entire Legislature, the Governor, Comptroller and Attorney General, as well as candidates for the 21st Congressional District, which covers the entire Adirondack Park.
Don’t look for political endorsements. We don’t endorse candidates for public office. We also don’t accept public money or taxpayer-funded donations of any kind. These two practices allow the Adirondack Council to remain a strong, independent voice for the Adirondack Park. We aren’t afraid to tell the truth.
Do look for criticism of actions that harmed the Park, and praise for efforts that helped protect the park’s ecological health, improve its wild character and/or enhance the sustainability of local communities.
And don’t look for partisan politics. We work with all elected and appointed officials, regardless of party affiliation. We find that love of the Adirondacks can be found among all political persuasions.
Careful readers will note that some issues cross into several areas of the report. This is not mere repetition. It is an indication of how complicated some of the Park’s problems and opportunities can be. Lasting solutions can be just as complex.
It also illustrates the importance of coordinating our efforts with others and the momentum we must build in order to accomplish our goals for a better Adirondack Park. Every success in this report is the result of more than one lawmaker or agency acting in the Park’s best interests. Every shortcoming is an indication of where we need to redouble our efforts and recruit new allies.
Over the past 33 years, the Adirondack Council has had the privilege of informing our members each fall which issues were resolved in the Park’s favor and which will require additional work. The entire staff team works to edit the publication so it is as informative and attractive as possible.
This year, we have updated the design to make the report easier to read and more visually appealing with additional photographs and illustrations. We even updated the map on page 2 that shows the public and private lands of the Park.
Don’t forget to check the centerfold for an update on what officials can do in the year ahead to make the Adirondack Park cleaner, greener, healthier and more sustainable.
A copy of State of the Park 2014 can be found online.