Ticonderoga There’s no doubt about it, the 2012 New York State Youth & Government conference was the best ever, according to the governor.
“I admit I’m bias, but I feel it was the best conference ever,” said Paige Hughes, New York governor. “We had the sharpest, most intelligent delegates New York has ever had. It was honestly the best conference I could have hoped for.”
Leading the conference was Hughes and 13 other delegates from Ticonderoga High School.
“When you get to Albany, everyone knows who the Ti kids are,” Hughes said. “Ticonderoga has established itself as a leader in Youth & Government.”
Joining Hughes at the state conference in March were Ti delegates Garrison Hughes, Will Lawrie, Ian Lawrie, Michael Watts, Dale Quesnel, Karney Manning, Josie Worley, Joe Gonyeau, Logan Ross, Jacob Young, Zech Yaw, Cody Shaner and Tomas Hendrix.
Danielle Palandrani is the Ticonderoga Youth in Government adviser.
Youth & Government, sponsored by the YMCA, is a national program that involves teens in state-organized, model-government programs. Students work on the local and district levels researching issues. They then go to the state conference where they divide into three branches of government — executive, legislative and judicial. There they propose, debate and adopt laws designed to meet the needs of the state.
Students fill the roles of legislators,lobbyists, pages, lawyers, judges, media and others. More than 550 students took part.
The state conference is held in Albany in the State Capitol, the Legislative Office Building and the Judicial Building.
While it’s a student exercise in government, it is serious business. State leaders pay close attention to their student counterparts. In fact, more than 80 current New York State laws were first introduced in the New York State Youth & Government Legislature.
Hughes is the second state governor from Ticonderoga. Joe Hiro was elected to the post in 1995-96. The conference marked the end of Hughes’ year in office. In her farewell address she challenged New York delegates to work up to their potential.