TICONDEROGA - The Adirondack Park Agency has announced publication of its 2008 annual report.
It's available on line at www.apa.state.ny.us
Energy conservation, permit timeliness, effective enforcement, regulatory revision and interpretation of the State Land Master Plan were 2008 highlights for the Adirondack Park Agency.
During 2008, the Administration Services Division implemented measures to improve energy efficiency within its facilities in accordance with Gov. David Paterson's Green Procurement and Agency Sustainability Program. Staff also completed a number of critical technology improvement projects.
Regulatory Programs staff issued 346 permits including 17 cellular project approvals. Staff also prepared an energy policy to guide development in the Adirondack Park.
The Jurisdictional Inquiry Office wrote 1,032 jurisdictional determinations, handled 920 referrals from other agencies and answered nearly 5,600 general inquiry phone calls. In addition, staff processed 240 Freedom of Information requests.
Economic Services staff focused on a number of issues important to the sustainability of Adirondack communities. Emerging energy technologies, local revitalization strategies and an affordable/workforce housing policy were addressed in 2008. Staff also provided technical support to the Adirondack Park Regional Assessment Project.
The report details how the Enforcement Program resolved 134 more cases in 2008 than in 2007. Ten cases were referred to the Enforcement Committee. A new subdivision tracking initiative implemented in February helped reduce new subdivision violations. Only 15 violations involving new subdivisions were identified in 2008.
The agency's Scientific Services staff delineated 297 wetlands, conducted 119 soil test pits and reviewed an additional 104 soil tests performed by consultants. The wetland permit compliance program, in its second year, revealed promising results. Staff concluded that 92 percent of 443 project sites were in compliance with permit conditions.
Regulatory revision was a focus for Legal staff. The 2008 Rulemaking addressed five issues including wetland subdivisions, expansion of non conforming shoreline structures and hunting and fishing cabins. The agency's actions codified important administrative practices and corrected inconsistencies resulting in improved protection for the Park's natural resources.
The agency's Planning Division completed map amendments that reclassified land in the Towns of Ticonderoga and Hague. These amendments will help accommodate future growth. Staff continues to develop valuable GIS applications and planning data.
State lands staff played a key role in State Land Master Plan interpretation decisions related to snowmobile trial mileage and unit management compliance issues. Staff also conducted numerous field visits and consultations with Department of Environmental Conservation staff regarding ongoing unit management planning efforts.
Local Government Services staff held training workshops throughout the Park. In March, Local Government Day was attended by a record number of people. Staff also reviewed 104 local variance referrals and responded to 530 inquires from town officials.
At the agency's Visitor Interpretive Centers at Paul Smiths and Newcomb an expanded focus on the state's historic and current efforts to protect the park's special character and quality of life was integrated. More than 92,000 people visited the Visitor Interpretive Centers in 2008: 28,447 at Newcomb and 64,329 at Paul Smiths.
For more information, call the APA at 891-4050 or visit www.apa.state.ny.us