On Tuesday when you go to vote, you’ll find two issues on your ballot that deal with New York’s Adirondack Park.
Both involve small land swaps that have been in the works for years. But because they impact the park’s forest preserve, which is protected by the state constitution, they require a vote of the people to move forward. Although one of the land swaps enjoys wide support, the other has sparked controversy and a fierce debate among environmentalists.
Governor Andrew Cuomo traveled to the Adirondacks on Sunday, bringing with him most of his executive cabinet and dozens of downstate reporters. He made the trip to promote a new $50 million land purchase that will add tens of thousands of acres to the park's forest preserve.
Congressman Bill Owens (D-Plattsburgh) says he will repay more than $20,000 for a junket that he took last December to Taiwan. The trip was paid for by a university in Taiwan. But it was planned and organized by a New York lobbying firm, which is no longer allowed under House of Representatives ethics rules.
A new rule that took effect this year in New York state is designed to stop the illegal sale of black bear parts for use in Asian medicine and cooking. While the sale of parts is still allowed, hunters will now have to document that they were taken legally.
The tiny village of Keene, N.Y., in the Adirondack Mountains is part of a trade network that supplies Asian apothecaries and restaurants from New York City to Seoul, South Korea.