The Adirondack Park Agency is debating what access options they will allow for land recently acquired by the Cuomo administration. Before the agency decides, Governor Andrew Cuomo is meeting with local officials to get their opinions. Cuomo was in the area last week, but a decision has still yet to be made. Capital Tonight's Nick Reisman has more.
NEW YORK STATE -- As Governor Andrew Cuomo weighs legislation to classify the state's latest land acquisition in the Adirondacks, the governor is trying to win over local officials in the North Country.
"We all agree on the principle, balance . But you have find that balance and strike that balance and it's often easier said than done," Cuomo said.
At stake is how to classify large tracts of former Finch Pruyn lands the state purchased from the Nature Conservancy. The Adirondack Park Agency is due to make a recommendation to Cuomo as to how the land can or can't be used, including whether motorized vehicles like snowmobiles can be used.
Cuomo said, "We have to preserve the park. We also need economic development, we need activity, we need revenues."
Cuomo, late last week, huddled with elected officials at the Gore Mountain Ski Center in North Creek to discuss the land use. They emerged to call the talks productive, but didn't indicate that any decisions had been resolved.
"The economy of this part of the state is very, very important. He's traveled to Indian Lake and Long Lake and Saranac Lake and seen the empty storefronts," said State Senator Elizabeth Little.
The land use decision comes as the Adirondack Park has struggled to retain population and businesses within the Blue Line. Critics of the APA have alleged the agency is too aggressive in its regulations, which stifles economic growth in the six million acre park.
"I get their needs and I get the needs of the Adirondack park," Cuomo said.
Cuomo's trip to the North Country rounds out a summer of the governor traveling across the upstate region. But a Siena College poll released Monday found a majority of upstate voters, 52 percent, would vote for someone else in next year's gubernatorial election.