The new York State Open Space Conservation Plan lists the
Pine Bush as its number one priority in Region 4.
The Plan states, "Albany Pine Bush: This area of Albany
County supports a rare and endangered pine barrens ecosystem.
The Albany Pine Bush Preserve Commission adopted a clear, comprehensive
set of recommendations in 1996 to guide land protection efforts
to complete a viable preserve. While tremendous success has
been achieved with the protection of nearly 2,750 acres to date,
it is estimated that an additional 1,200 acres will have to
be secured to complete the Preserve. The Region 4 Advisory Committee
supports the work of the Albany Pine Bush Preserve Commission
and the protection priorities outlined in the 1996 Albany Pine
Bush Preserve Protection Guidelines."
Since 1995, the State has invested more than $378 million to
preserve more than 394,000 acres across New York. In his 2002
State of the State Address, Governor Pataki outlined a vision
for preserving an additional 1 million acres of land over the
next decade, through partnerships with local governments, land
trusts, conservation groups and the public. The State's Open
Space Plan includes strategies for implementing this initiative.
Under State law, New York's Open Space Conservation Plan is
updated every three years by the State Department of Environmental
Conservation (DEC) and the State Office of Parks, Recreation
and Historic Preservation (OPRHP), with the assistance of nine
regional advisory committees jointly appointed by the State
and county governments. A draft plan developed last year was
widely distributed for public comments and a series of public
hearings were held across the State.
Nearly 900 public comments were received and were overwhelmingly
supportive of maintaining a strong State open space conservation
program. Following the public comment period, DEC and OPRHP
assessed the comments received and consulted further with the
regional advisory committees in preparing the final plan.
The 2002 New York State Open Space Conservation Plan is available
on DEC's website at: www.dec.state.ny.us/website/opensp/index.html.
Copies of the plan also are available at regional DEC and OPRHP
All people interested in preservation of the Pine Bush are urged
to take a moment and call the Governor's Office at 518/474-1041
to ask the Governor to purchase all of the remaining Pine Bush.and
conservation. Native plant landscaping of developments, which
is now available, keeps down the number of invasive species
in the Pine Bush. Changing exterior lighting to lights invisible
to amphibians and insects disturb these native animals and insects
less. Easements, set-asides and mitigation fees are also used..
Printed in the October/November 2002 Newsletter