In the News  Archive

Schumer pushes for conservation fund during Lake Placid visit

Lake Placid News
November 7, 2015

By MATTHEW TURNER

LAKE PLACID - U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer met with local officials Friday and announced he will push to renew the Land and Water Conservation Fund.

Schumer stood inside the Lake Placid Beach House as he spoke about reauthorizing the program. He hopes to include it in the next federal budget this January.

"Our Peacock Park, right here, is a shining example of why these funds are needed," Schumer said.

The LWCF is a federal program that provides grant money, as its name states, for land and wildlife conservation, as well as parks and recreational facilities. Congress did not reauthorize the program in its most recent budget.

Schumer emphasized that the program is of particular importance to Adirondack Park communities.

"This is not something that we think is good for us," he said. "We know it's good for us."

Schumer said the North Country has received $7 million from the program, including 10 conservation projects in Essex County, totaling around $4 million in funding. Of that, $38,000 went to maintain Peacock Park in 2001.

"This is one of these things that make people say, 'What is going on in Washington?'" he said. "It's a casualty of the fighting you've read about going on in Washington."

Schumer blamed a group of conservative lawmakers in the House of Representatives, called the House Freedom Caucus, for defunding the program.

"There is a group of people who don't really want to fund anything - anything," Schumer said. "They're on the hard right, and they've tied the House in a knot."

The senator was joined at the podium by several supporters of the program.

Adirondack Council Executive Director Willie Janeway said no politician has worked harder than Schumer to make sure the program will be funded.

"The Adirondack Park is this incredible national treasure, clean water and wilderness," Janeway. "The program has funded the protection of water, community park projects and wilderness projects. It's a real crime that we don't have that program reauthorized."

Town of North Elba Supervisor Roby Politi agreed that the program is important to the people of the North Country.

"This is an essential program that needs to continue and we appreciate your effort," he told Schumer.

Politi also asked the senator to address what he believes is an overuse of road salt by the state Department of Transportation, which he said has a negative effect on local water quality.

"All that road salt heads into Mirror Lake," Politi said. "For some reason, the state of New York seems to back off from considering the use of so much salt on our roadways, and I know they want to protect everyone on our roads."

Danny Mongno, a representative from the paddle sports industry who works for Werner Paddles, spoke about the importance the LWCF has on his industry.

"Within a 60-mile radius of Lake Placid, including right here in town, there are many retailers and outfitters," Mongno said, "and those incomes are funding people right here in the North Country. So funding the (LWFC) is integral to getting people out on the water and helping the economies in the area."

Schumer said the North Country has received $7 million from the program, including 10 conservation projects in Essex County, totaling around $4 million in funding. Of that, $38,000 went to maintain Peacock Park in 2001.

"This is one of these things that make people say, 'What is going on in Washington?'" he said. "It's a casualty of the fighting you've read about going on in Washington."

Schumer blamed a group of conservative lawmakers in the House of Representatives, called the House Freedom Caucus, for defunding the program.

"There is a group of people who don't really want to fund anything - anything," Schumer said. "They're on the hard right, and they've tied the House in a knot."

The senator was joined at the podium by several supporters of the program.

Adirondack Council Executive Director Willie Janeway said no politician has worked harder than Schumer to make sure the program will be funded.

"The Adirondack Park is this incredible national treasure, clean water and wilderness," Janeway. "The program has funded the protection of water, community park projects and wilderness projects. It's a real crime that we don't have that program reauthorized."

Town of North Elba Supervisor Roby Politi agreed that the program is important to the people of the North Country.

"This is an essential program that needs to continue and we appreciate your effort," he told Schumer.

Politi also asked the senator to address what he believes is an overuse of road salt by the state Department of Transportation, which he said has a negative effect on local water quality.

"All that road salt heads into Mirror Lake," Politi said. "For some reason, the state of New York seems to back off from considering the use of so much salt on our roadways, and I know they want to protect everyone on our roads."

Danny Mongno, a representative from the paddle sports industry who works for Werner Paddles, spoke about the importance the LWCF has on his industry.

"Within a 60-mile radius of Lake Placid, including right here in town, there are many retailers and outfitters," Mongno said, "and those incomes are funding people right here in the North Country. So funding the (LWFC) is integral to getting people out on the water and helping the economies in the area."

- See more at: http://www.lakeplacidnews.com/page/content.detail/id/524291/Schumer-pushes-for-conservation-fund-during-Lake-Placid-visit.html#sthash.Pvn15mn1.dpuf

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