The state budget was late, but it finally passed both houses last week.
I had a quick overview on our website highlighting that the Adirondacks and Catskills are getting $1.55 million for visitor use management. Of that funding, up to $800,000 will go to Essex County to assist with its pilot shuttle system, front country stewards and infrastructure, like portable toilets. We also have a renewed $3 billion environmental bond act.
I also have a preview of the Adirondack Park Agency’s meeting that’s happening this Thursday and Friday. There’s so much to talk about. On the agenda includes votes on a solar project, a housing development, a map amendment request and a day-use area changing to a campground. Of note, the APA agenda does not include its wildlands monitoring and visitor use management framework that it had said it would discuss in March. APA staff pulled it from the agenda last month, saying they needed more time. The APA spokesman did not answer my question asking why it is delayed again. With hiking season approaching, it will be interesting to see if this input from APA comes out soon.
For those bracing for April 15, the day the Adirondack Mountain Reserve is supposed to start taking reservations for hikers, the AMR has an updated FAQ list on its website. One question of mine was answered: if you arrive to the AMR via another route, like the Elk Lake-Marcy Trail, you will not need a reservation. Go to https://www.hikeamr.org/ for more info and to make a profile for registering.
Editor’s note: This first appeared in Gwen’s weekly “Adirondack Report” newsletter. Click here to sign up.