Where's the Balance Between
Protecting the Environment and Development?
by Theresa Naske, some rights reserved
healthy tension will always exist between development and protecting
The decisions a
community makes about how to
balance the two has repercussions
for our health and well being, our tax rate, our rights as landowners,
and the very character of our community.
The CAC has focused on the environmental issues that challenge
us. The Comprehensive Plan Committee has incorporated
the work of the CAC into this
Space and Rural
Character Deserve Protection -- How?
When the CAC developed the Open Space Plan, the general consensus
of the Hurley citizens was to maintain the rural character
of the community. Residents
concern that over--development would change Hurley and its culture. They
do not want to see Hurley become a victim of urban sprawl and want to maintain
atmosphere, peace and quiet of this uniquely residential community.
Many individual comments echoed the same themes -- maintain
the open spaces, including the farmland, which afford scenic
views. Maintain scenic overlook
areas on the Hurley Ridge, West Hurley, Ohayo Mt. and Tonche Mountain.
Photo by Theresa Naske, all rights
reserved, used with permission
In addition there is considerable community interest in adequate
public recreational spaces and accessible open land.
After much discussion the
CAC endorses the recommendations in the Open Space Plan prepared
by Dan Schuster and Associates and the two water
resources study completed for the town.
In 2003, during the public hearing s on the Open Space Plan,
residents identified water quality and quantity as their primary
have devoted an entire
section to this topic.
The mid-Hudson Valley continues to have poor air quality. In
April 2006 the American Lung Association reported poor
grades on air
in their “State of the Air 2006.” Ulster County received a grade
of C. Several counties around us received F’s. Almost
25,000 people in the county suffer from asthma, bronchitis,
regulations prove to be one of the most controversial areas
of the plan. The state has extensive burn regulations
may be difficult to enforce. However, we have chosen to recommend
bans on burn barrels and burning leaves. We’ve also recommended a ban on any fire that
interferes with a neighbor’s life.
We make these recommendations because smoke is a significant
contributor to our poor air quality and a particular contributor
problems of residents
who live in close proximity to those who burn.