The Catskill Center's Executive Director Jeff Senterman and Associate Director Kali Bird had the opportunity to attend Governor Cuomo's Mid-Hudson State of the State Address at SUNY Purchase on January 10, 2017. We joined other non-profits, elected officials, and citizens of the region, to hear the Governor speak about his upcoming plans. Those plans included the providing $300 million to fund the Environmental Protection Fund, the proposed Empire Trail, a 760-mile multi-use trail that would link New York City to the North Country and run west to Buffalo, and greater protection of drinking water sources, including the Catskills. Of interest specifically to the Catskills, we were very excited to see $5 million for the Catskill Park as part of the Governor's new Adventure NY initiative. That funding is earmarked for access, trail and signage improvements throughout the Catskill Park! We are also very excited about rural development and other initiatives that should assist our Catskill communities.
The Catskill Park Coalition, which the Catskill Center co-chairs, is working to increase funding for the Catskill Park and we are excited to see proposals this early in budget process that include the Catskill Park. The coalition is working hard over the next few months of the budget season to ensure that these proposals make it into the final budget and are increased to reflect the 2017 legislative asks of the Coalition for the Catskill region.
The 2017 Catskill Park Awareness Day will be held on Tuesday, February 7, 2017 in Albany. Teams of volunteers like you will be visiting legislators from across New York to impress upon them the importance of supporting the Catskill region. Please sign up now and help us let Albany know that the Catskills are important.
Since 1969, the Catskill Center has led the effort to protect the Catskills. Our Mission is to protect and foster the environmental, cultural and economic well-being of the Catskill region.