I agree with much you stated - to a degree. But I'd rather see my NY tax-dollars go to preserving what is left of Adirondacks that giving raises and extra benefits to union state workers, friends of politicians, school teachers, welfare recipients, etc. I've lived off-and-on in Hamilton County (Indian Lake) for 30 years. That is in the original part of the park (unlike Lake George region that was added later). My grandmother at age 18 in 1924 came from France, went through Ellis Island and traveled by train, coach, and steam-boat to Old Forge where she lived for many years - taking care of some rich NYC family's kids. All mail and groceries came by steam-boat and all heat was from coal or wood. No electricity. Kids went to school in a one-room school-house. By those standards -the life style is certainly easier now. My neighbor in Indian Lake lives where she was born. 78 years old, widow -and still heats with wood. She works all summer at Blue Mountain Lake at the "rich peoples" museum run by non-native people. She gets winters off and collects unemployment. She tells me that things are much easier for her now then when she was a kid. No electricity until after WWII.
Much (but not all) of the Adirondacks is worth preserving in my opinion. In regard to the corrupt APA (Adirondack Park Agency) - I don't think they do enough to actually preserve habitat. They waste too much time on other trivial issues and constantly break their own rules.
No doubt that park has a low population of native full-timers. But it always did and most I know want more tourists to visit (along with their money) and not less. Many of the natives would be fine with clear-cutting much of the place and getting a few bucks for the logs. Same way it was before the Park was created.
Up to a few years ago - Racquette Lake had the smallest school in the USA -but now it's closed. The entire elementary and high school was down to two students. We were going to enroll our kid there. Now the kids get bussed to Indian Lake. Oddly the residents of Racquette Lake voted to keep the school and taxes going even though it's empty.
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