Posts Tagged ‘APA’

Monday, November 25, 2019

Tent Platforms: A History of Personal Forest Preserve Leases

Adirondack Tent Platform Design Many years ago my wife, our Newfoundland dog, and I paddled past what appeared to be many rather unnatural clearings on Long Pond in the St. Regis Canoe Area. Here and there, partially underwater, I saw a piece of plastic water pipe or an old rusty pipe that might have been a dock support. They are the remains of tent platform sites.

In the early 1970s, these camps on “forever wild” New York State Adirondack Forest Preserve Lands were built on leases to private individuals. There were somewhere in the vicinity of 600 individual leases throughout the Adirondacks at that time.  Many tent platform leases were on Lower Saranac Lake, where there were 187 tent platforms leased in 1961, and on the various ponds that today comprise the St. Regis Canoe Area. There were also tent platform sites on such popular lakes as Forked, Seventh, Lewey, and Indian Lakes, along the Raquette River, and in many other areas. » Continue Reading.


Sunday, November 24, 2019

95% Protected Open Space? APA Knows Better

At this month’s Adirondack Park Agency meeting in Ray Brook, senior APA staff presented a review of large-scale residential subdivisions permitted by APA between 2012 and today. By large-scale, they meant the size thresholds created by the APA, mirrored in pending conservation subdivision design legislation in Albany: five or more lots in Resource Management (colored green on the APA Land Use and Development Plan map), ten or more in Rural Use (yellow), and 25 or more in Low Intensity Use (orange).

Resource Management (RM) being the most protected private land use classification in the Park, I’ll restrict my post to what APA senior staff said about the four subdivision permits issued for projects of five lots or more in RM from 2012 until today. There have been four such permits issued: Adirondack Club and Resort, Tupper Lake, in 2012; Highland Farmers, Keene, in 2012; New York Land and Lakes, Bleecker, in 2015; and Barille family, North Elba, in 2017. » Continue Reading.


Sunday, November 10, 2019

State Forest Preserve Use Plans Ignore Climate Change

Noah Shaw, former general counsel for the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), contributed to the drafting of New York State’s groundbreaking 2019 climate legislation. This September, he wrote an op-ed in the Adirondack Explorer,What New York’s Bold Climate Law Means for the Adirondacks.”

The Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act of 2019 “outlines a so-called ‘carbon offset’ program as a counter-weight to the 15 percent of emissions that may remain after all our other emissions-reducing actions are taken,” he wrote. “These will likely come from hard-to-clean-up activities like aviation, agriculture, shipping and heavy industry. New York’s most valuable carbon offset resource, also known as a ‘sink,’ is its forestland. This is good news for the Adirondack Forest Preserve.” » Continue Reading.


Sunday, October 20, 2019

Blue Mountain Wild Forest Comments Being Sought

Blue Mountain Wild Forest Map Courtesy Adirondack AtlasThe Adirondack Park Agency (APA) and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) are holding a joint public comment period to solicit comments for an amendment to the Blue Mountain Wild Forest Unit Management Plan.

Public comment will be accepted until October 30, 2019. » Continue Reading.


Monday, October 14, 2019

Advocates Seek Sentinel Range Management Plan Improvements

Adirondack Sentinel Range Wilderness Map courtesy Adirondack AtlasThe Adirondack Council on October 4th sent a letter to Adirondack Park Agency Deputy Director for Planning Richard Weber urging that the proposed Sentinel Range Wilderness Area Unit Management Plan be incorporated into a larger landscape-scale plan for all public and private lands around the High Peaks Wilderness Area.

The Council also urged the APA to improve its monitoring of impacts of recreation on the ecology and wild character of the Forest Preserve, especially in wilderness areas. As it does with other unit management plans, the APA must decide whether it complies with the Adirondack Park State Land Master Plan. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, October 8, 2019

APA Considering Primitive Campsites, Blue Mountain Wild Forest, Black Brook Development

APA Building in Ray Brook NYThe Adirondack Park Agency (APA) will hold its monthly meeting at its headquarters in Ray Brook, NY Thursday, October 10th and Friday October 11th, 2019.

The meeting will address a seven-lot subdivision in the Town of Black Brook, primitive tent sites and management practices, and a discussion of proposed changes in the Blue Mountain Wild Forest.

What follows is the agenda issued by the APA: » Continue Reading.


Sunday, September 29, 2019

2019 State of the Adirondack Park

2019 state of the parkThe Adirondack Council’s 2019-20 State of the Park report is subtitled “Challenged by Success,” noting that the success of state tourism campaigns is straining the park’s lands and waters, as record numbers of hikers climb the state’s tallest mountains and as recreational boating and off-road vehicles gain popularity.

The challenge is especially noticeable in the High Peaks Wilderness Area, but can be seen in popular locations throughout the park, the report notes. State of the Park is the organization’s annual comprehensive assessment of the actions of local, state and federal government officials. This 38th edition rates 106 separate government actions. » Continue Reading.


Monday, September 16, 2019

Changes In Store For Sentinel Range Wilderness

The Adirondack Park Agency (APA) is accepting public comment for the Sentinel Range Wilderness Area Unit Management Plan. The APA will accept public comments October 11th, 2019 regarding Adirondack Park State Land Master Plan conformance for the proposed management actions in the wilderness area.

The Sentinel Range Wilderness Area (SRWA) is located in the northeast portion of the Adirondack Park in the towns of Jay, Keene, North Elba, and Wilmington in Essex County. The SRWA covers 23,874 acres. The namesake of the unit, the Sentinel Range, is a prominent mountain range in the region. The unit also encompasses exceptional watercourses classified under the Wild, Scenic, and Recreational Rivers System Act (WSRRS Act) including the East and West Branch of the Ausable River. » Continue Reading.


Sunday, September 8, 2019

APA Board Meeting: Primitive Campsites, Logging, Subdivision

APA Building in Ray Brook NYThe Adirondack Park Agency will hold its monthly meeting at its headquarters in Ray Brook on Thursday, September 12th and Friday September 13th, 2019. Both sessions will convene at 9 am.

The meeting will include consideration of an amendment to a timber harvesting project in Westport, a review of public comments on the replacement of utility poles, consideration of amendments to the Town of Chester Local Land Use plan, a presentation on the final Sentinel Range Wilderness Unit Management Plan, rules for constructing and siting primitive campsites and more. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Forever Wild And The Word “Timber”

Protect the Adirondacks recently won a major victory in its lawsuit to enforce Article 14, Section 1 of the state Constitution, the well-known forever wild clause. The case challenged the excessive tree cutting undertaken by state agencies to build a vast network of Class II Community Connector snowmobile trails in the Adirondack Forest Preserve.

The case began in 2013 and this result has been six years in the making. Previously, the Appellate Division, Third Department, of the state Supreme Court had issued a preliminary injunction against this tree cutting in 2016 after the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and Adirondack Park Agency (APA) had constructed or roughed out over 20 miles of new trails.

» Continue Reading.


Sunday, August 18, 2019

Viewpoint: Save the Adirondack Park Agency

APA Building in Ray Brook NYThe Adirondack Park Agency is weaker today than at any time in its 48-year history. That the fault rests with the office of Governor Andrew Cuomo is both unfortunate and surprising: unfortunate because the APA was created to protect the Adirondack Park from damaging use and development but is now falling down on the job; surprising because, at the national level, the Governor has become a leader in combating climate change, the greatest environmental threat to our planet in human history. Yet in a critically important way the Governor has neglected the world-class park in his own backyard. » Continue Reading.


Sunday, July 21, 2019

Bill Branson On DEC’s Historic Rail Corridor Plans

remsen lake placid travel corridor mapThe DEC is again taking comments on the proposed latest DSEIS and the Remsen-Lake Placid travel corridor. The position of the Adirondack Scenic Railroad has never been anything but clear and, although we sued DEC and prevailed, it is not in that context that I again write. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Appoint Tim Rowland to Adirondack Park Agency Board

APA Building in Ray Brook NYAs membership of the Adirondack Park Agency board dwindles toward zero, I would like to toss my hat into the ring for consideration.

In the words of Sam Cooke, I don’t know much biology, don’t know much about a science book, don’t know much about the French I took. But come on, all this talk about “qualifications” has gotten a bit out of hand, don’t you think? » Continue Reading.


Monday, July 8, 2019

David Gibson On APA Appointments, Role of Statewide Interests

APA Building in Ray Brook NYSome local government leaders in the Adirondack Park complain that Governor Cuomo’s 2019 picks for seats on the Adirondack Park Agency remain unconfirmed by the State Senate. They feel that these individuals have been unfairly blocked by environmentalists putting pressure on State Senators.

They can be forgiven for forgetting that this is not the first time that a Democratic Governor’s choices for the Adirondack Park Agency have been rejected by a Democratic State Senate. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Major Adirondack Conservation Reform Bill Falls Short

NYS capital buildingLegislation advanced in each house of the New York State Legislature this year that, if approved, would have amended the Adirondack Park Agency (APA) Act to require conservation development standards, clustering, and open space protections for the largest proposed subdivisions in the Adirondack Park.

The proposed bill would be the most significant amendment to the Land Use and Development Plan since enactment in 1973. The legislation gained some bi-partisan support but failed to advance in final days of the session when North Country representatives Senator Betty Little and Assemblymember Dan Stec lobbied to keep the bill from coming up for a vote. » Continue Reading.