I am writing in response to an article and editorial about the declining population in the Adirondacks.
If one charts the rise of taxes in our state, (our state is the highest-taxed state in our nation), one could correlate the population decline in the park, and with the entire state, for that matter. Northville Mayor John Spaeth states that Northville is becoming a "retirement community."
However, an economist would look upon retired people as the perfect consumer, and communities should be so lucky to attract them.
Th population decline is fueled by the high cost of taxes and education, both being among the most expensive in our nation.
Mark Kilmer, president of the Fulton Montgomery Regional Chamber of Commerce, stated that park restrictions cause the lack of "professional" jobs in the park; one should note that more than 80 percent of professionals are funded with taxpayer dollars. Sorry, we have more than enough of those.
Kilmer and the Chamber of Commerce people should direct their resources to fill existing vacant manufacturing buildings that surround the park perimeter, and those within.
We must remind ourselves, the Adirondack Park was created to keep it a "public protected" area, and those restrictions thus enacted were to ensure that mandate. Those necessary restrictions have been assailed over the years, as they are being now.
It is unfortunate some members of our park are complicit in their efforts to "water down" those enacted restrictions. Northampton Mayor James Groff states that he would like to see economic development to the point it is booming like it used to be. If the park "boomed" before with the existing restrictions, why can it not boom again?
The problem is our declining economy, not our aging population.
We must keep in mind the Adirondack Park was created to preserve this gift of nature for the enjoyment of ourselves and our oncoming generations. If you examine the motives of the critics of the park restrictions, you will find them self-serving. For example, their personal job concerns and outside (and inside) land developers' influence are used for their own self-gain.
As the economy improves, so will the concerns over the declining population and job opportunities. The restrictions are necessary to protect the integrity of purpose for which the Adirondack Park was created.