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Are North Country zoning rules promoting sprawl?

What if we're accidentally ruining our small towns in the North Country?

What if, with the best intentions, we've adopted planning and zoning rules that are actually making neighborhoods and downtowns less appealing, less liveable?

Randall Arendt is a conservation design planner and author of a series of books about rural development who will speak this week at a conference in the Adirondacks.

Arendt says from the Adirondack Park Agency right down to local zoning boards, people in the North Country have adopted ideas that don't fit our small towns.

Arendt spoke recently with Brian Mann.  Go to full article
Photo: David Sommerstein.

Putting farmers on the map, literally

One more story from last weekend's Farm Aid in Saratoga Springs.

There was a huge tent at the concert showcasing farm-related not-for-profits called the Homegrown Village.

Essex County-based group Adirondack Harvest had a nifty and popular display. You wrote the name of your neighborhood farmer on neon-colored post-it note and stuck it on a big map of the Northeast.

The result was an impressive visual guide to the small farms of the region. Listen to an interview with Adirondack Harvest coordinator Laurie Davis.  Go to full article
Beekeeper Phil Laflamme. Photo: Lucy Martin

Beekeeper Phil Laflamme on current challenges

Bees and the problems they face have been newsworthy for some time now. Efforts to understand that issue have included a well-attended seminar in Perth, Ontario on ways to bring pollinator populations back.

One of the speakers at that event was Phil Laflamme, who's been raising bees and queens for nearly 40 years. While it's something he loves, he's less sure beekeeping is right for just everyone. Laflamme spoke with Lucy Martin at the farm-tour segment of the seminar in mid-September.  Go to full article
Governor Cuomo unveils "Texting Zones" along NYS Thruway and highways. Photo: <a href="">Gov. Cuomo's office</a>

Thruway to add pull-offs for texting and calling

NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo says the state Thruway will offer more places to pull over and answer text messages or make cell phone calls, in an effort to prevent texting while...  Go to full article
New York's plans to expand gambling  must be approved by voters in November.Photo: ragingwire, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Cuomo will promote "yes" on casino referendum

NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo says he plans to offer support to a November ballot referendum to allow new gambling casinos in New York.

Cuomo urged the state legislature...  Go to full article
Essex, NY. Photo: <a href="">Raymond Johnston</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

41 horses seized for neglect in Essex

Forty-one malnourished horses have been seized from a property in the town of Essex in the Champlain Valley. That's according to a ...  Go to full article