Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: Quite contrary to NY Snowmobiler article Regarding Nov 7 vote (Syracuse.com: 9-21-17)

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Posts
    128

    Default Quite contrary to NY Snowmobiler article Regarding Nov 7 vote (Syracuse.com: 9-21-17)

    NY constitutional convention threatens 'Forever Wild' Adirondacks (Commentary)

    5
    Updated on September 21, 2017 at 10:44 AM Posted on September 21, 2017 at 10:43 AM
    Blue Mountain Lake in the Adirondack Mountains on Sept. 30, 2013. The New York state Constitution's "Forever Wild" clause guards more than 3 million acres of public forests in the Adirondack and Catskill parks, known as the State Forest Preserve.
    Blue Mountain Lake in the Adirondack Mountains on Sept. 30, 2013. The New York state Constitution's "Forever Wild" clause guards more than 3 million acres of public forests in the Adirondack and Catskill parks, known as the State Forest Preserve. (Michael Greenlar | mgreenlar@syracuse.com)
    9
    shares
    By Special to syracuse.com
    Second in a series about the ballot proposal to hold a constitutional convention in New York state.

    John Sheehan is the director of communications for the Adirondack Council, a privately funded not-for-profit organization whose mission is to ensure the ecological integrity and wild character of the Adirondack Park. The council maintains offices in Elizabethtown and Albany.

    By John F. Sheehan | Special to Syracuse.com

    On Nov. 7, Central New York voters will be asked whether they want to hold a constitutional convention in 2018. For the sake of the Adirondack Park and its "Forever Wild" public Forest Preserve, we urge readers to vote "no."

    We believe a constitutional convention would expose the Forever Wild clause to unwarranted risk, while offering little hope for any improvement.

    The primary mission of the Adirondack Council is to defend the "Forever Wild" clause of the New York state Constitution (Article 14, Section 1). Over the past 42 years, we have defended it against nearly annual attempts by members of the New York state Legislature to eliminate, modify or otherwise weaken it. So far, we have succeeded in keeping the Forever Wild clause intact. It hasn't been easy, but it's worth the fight.

    Forever Wild is the strongest and most effective forest protection law in the world. It guards more than 3 million acres of public forests in the Adirondack and Catskill parks, known as the State Forest Preserve. It prohibits logging, lease, sale and development, or destruction of the timber on these public lands.

    The Adirondack Forest Preserve comprises the largest intact, temperate deciduous forest on Earth. It encompasses almost all of the motor-free wilderness and never-logged, old growth forest remaining in the Northeast. No other Northeast state has much pristine wild land or virgin forest, because they don't have a Forever Wild clause.

    Wildness is what makes the Adirondacks so special. Forever Wild ensures the protection of New York's purest waters, rarest wildlife, largest wetlands and grandest unbroken forests. It's a vast expanse of awesome natural scenery, peace and solitude amid the most populated region of the United States.

    Forever Wild is also vital to the Adirondack Park's cultural identity. The Forest Preserve provides refuge from a world of rapid social, political and technological change. Its pristine beauty attracts millions of visitors per year, who support the rural communities within the Park.

    Yet time and again, despite strong public support, the council has been compelled to educate members of the Legislature about the need to keep Forever Wild unchanged.

    It's true that the Forever Wild clause was adopted at a Constitutional Convention in 1894. But it happened under unique circumstances. Forever Wild was introduced mid-convention by the New York City Board of Trade and Transportation and the Constitution Club of Brooklyn.

    The board of trade was concerned over the fate of barge traffic on the Erie Canal. Clear-cutting in the Adirondacks meant less water in the Hudson River and Erie Canal. Thus, logging was threatening the trade route that made New York the richest port in North America.

    So it was really a competing commercial interest that carried the day for Forever Wild against the clear-cutters in 1894. Environmentalists carried the ball over the next two centuries.

    Today, Forever Wild has earned great voter support. But awful state and federal campaign finance laws would put Forever Wild supporters at a great disadvantage should there be a convention now. The U.S. Supreme Court's decision in the Citizens United case ensures that a corporation may make campaign contributions. New York's LLC loophole means limited liability companies can make virtually unlimited campaign contributions.

    Anyone rich enough - including out-of-state corporations - may exert enormous influence over who is elected as delegates and what they do at the convention.

    That's bad news when delegates will be elected from Senate districts. The Senate has been the source of most of the legislative attempts to undercut Forever Wild.

    Ironically, the Forever Wild clause has been amended amicably six times since 1995 to help the communities such as Keene, Piseco Lake, Raquette Lake and Tupper Lake cope with the need for electricity, drinking water and other infrastructure. You can't build that stuff on Forever Wild lands. So before taming even a tiny piece of Forest Preserve, it has to be swapped for a more valuable piece of land nearby to replace it. Only the voters can OK the swap through an amendment to the Forever Wild clause of the state Constitution.

    In fact, voters will also be asked on Nov. 7 to approve an amendment to Forever Wild creating a modest land bank for Adirondack communities. They could use it to straighten short road sections, replace bridges or install utilities on existing roads that cross the Forest Preserve.

    So vote "no" on Proposal No. 1, the Constitutional Convention. Don't throw out the whole constitution.

    But vote "yes" on Proposal No. 3, the Adirondack health and Safety Land Bank Constitutional Amendment.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    CNY
    Posts
    3,475

    Default The NYSSA article being referenced above...

    From the Desk of the Executive Director
    By Dominic Jacangelo, Executive Director
    dominic@nysnowmobiler.com
    888-624-3849 x104

    Vote Yes for the Adirondacks!

    With all the attention on the November 7th ballot question on whether or not NY should hold a Constitutional Convention, little attention is being paid to other questions on the ballot. One question which deserves our attention and support is Question #3 (also known as Proposition #3).
    If approved, Question #3 will allow New York State to develop a 250 acre land bank which municipal government can draw upon to install vital infrastructure that has no choice but to cross State Forest Preserve Land. Here is what proponents say, “If approved by voters, Proposition 3 will eliminate the need for Adirondack and Catskill communities to obtain a state constitutional amendment any time they want to undertake road maintenance, utility installation and bicycle path creation projects that require the use of small portions of state Forest Preserve land. This is a prolonged and costly process that is not required in communities outside those areas. The Proposition will also allow public utilities, including broadband, to be installed within the widths of roads that cross Forest Preserve land.”
    Much more detailed information can be found at http://www.voteyesfortheadirondacks.com/ .
    While the state lands within the Adirondack Park are unmatched in the country, we should all remember that half the Park is privately owned and that scores of New Yorkers are trying to make a life and a livelihood within its borders. No this is not a make or break issue for snowmobilers, but as an activity more than 1/3rd of all snowmobile rides occur within the Park. We owe it to those communities that so support our sport to support them in their effort to make life in the Adirondacks just a little more palatable.
    The passage of this Question will make that just a little more possible. Support Ballot Question 3 on Election Day, November 7, 2017.
    Stay Right and BETWEEN the Stakes!!

    Join a club WHEREVER you ride!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    CNY
    Posts
    3,475

    Default

    The article in the NYSNOWMOBILER Magazine is actually totally different stories. The NYSSA ED article was posted about the Adirondack Land Bank proposal #3. John Sheehan of The Adirondack Council agrees with that, see his last line.
    Stay Right and BETWEEN the Stakes!!

    Join a club WHEREVER you ride!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Glenfield NY / Lake Pleasant NY
    Posts
    1,569

    Default

    Forever Wild was introduced mid-convention by the New York City Board of Trade and Transportation and the Constitution Club of Brooklyn.
    So in other words, New York City has been telling people in the Adirondacks what they can and can't do since 1894. People in NYC wanted their interests protected, no matter how it affected people in the "park."

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Central NY
    Posts
    1,426

    Default

    I really don't know how to vote on the constitutional convention. If the tree huggers are against it then maybe I should vote for it? But I also know that King Andrew is in favor of it so maybe I should vote against it. Where can I get unbiased information about it to help me make my decision?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    1,494

    Default

    Will Proposition 3 enable the state the build snowmobile trails in the Adirondacks (if they want to use it for that purpose)?
    Is voting for Prop 3 in the best interests of snowmobilers in the Adirondacks, to enable community connector trails?
    Is this why the Exec Director of NYSSA is for that, or is his motivation more general benefit to ADK communities (or both)?

    The other issue for snowmobilers in the ADK's is Article 14 of the NYS constitution and its vague wording...
    "Section 1. The lands of the state, now owned or hereafter acquired, constituting the forest preserve as now fixed by law, shall be forever kept as wild forest lands. They shall not be leased, sold or exchanged, or be taken by any corporation, public or private, nor shall the timber thereon be sold, removed or destroyed. ...... (continued but not copied here)

    PTA and others want to interpret this in the extreme towards what they would like to see, but is that a reasonable interpretation? A constitutional convention could clarify what that means and settle that once and for all. It could go for or against snowmobilers , so its a crapshoot. At the very least it could end the lawsuits and clarify how to manage the property for all concerned. That would make sense to me. As it stands now nobody knows exactly what that means and what the requirements are. What exactly is "TIMBER"? Is that one tree or a stand of trees (of some particular size). I say its time to pin it down, hopefully in the context of what the original framers of the constitution meant when they used words to communicate meaning.

    http://www.dec.ny.gov/lands/55849.html

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    100

    Default Constitutional Convention

    Absolutely positively vote NO. Do not open Pandora's box to the so called elected officials who only care about themselves . The unintended consequences will far outweigh any good.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Central NY
    Posts
    1,426

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by NYXC500 View Post
    Absolutely positively vote NO. Do not open Pandora's box to the so called elected officials who only care about themselves . The unintended consequences will far outweigh any good.
    I don't know if you have noticed, but things aren't exactly great here in NY. I really wonder what there is to lose?

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •