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Green group looks to rally support for land acquisition

The Nature Conservancy's Connie Prickett says it's costing money for the organization to hold on to the fee titles in question.

"We are raising money privately to help offset the cost to New York state and position us to carry the property," she said. "It's so important - people are so inspired by this project that we have raised now $27.8 million. It's very expensive and we can't hold the properties for ever. We are working to be able to hold out a little bit longer."

The driving force behind the delay on this deal is the state's fiscal crisis, which lawmakers and Gov. Cuomo are still working to address.

Those fiscal constraints in Albany have prompted some officials to call for the land deals to be tabled - and in some cases canned altogether.

Just how extensive that opposition is seems to be up for debate, though.

"The Inter-County Legislative Committee of the Adirondacks which represents 12 counties has passed a resolution of opposition."

If you ask Fred Monroe, executive director of the Adirondack Local Government Review Board, opposition to this sort of land deal is widespread.

"The Adirondack Association of Towns and Villages, the Review Board - the two of those entities represent 12 counties and one represents 130 towns and villages," he said. "Five counties have passed resolutions in opposition. 12 towns have passed resolution in opposition."

John Sheehan of the Adirondack Council says that opposition is more along the lines of a few organizations and local governments.

For Connie Prickett, the support that matters most is that which comes from the communities directly affected by the land in question.

"All of the required approvals have been secured for years now," she said. "We worked out a balanced and thoughtful conservation plan and we continue to move forward with DEC on that project."

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