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For Release: Friday, February 3, 2023

DEC Seeks Public Input on Draft Forest Preserve Work Plan Policy

Deadline for Public Comments is Feb. 27

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is seeking public input on a newly developed policy to guide how DEC evaluates and reviews work plans for projects in the Adirondack and Catskill Forest Preserve. The draft Commissioner Policy (PDF) is available for public comment until Feb. 27.

"DEC is seeking public input on how best to evaluate proposed projects in the Forest Preserve," said DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos. "The Adirondacks and Catskills are much-loved destinations for recreation and experience significant visitor use in some areas. DEC's goal is to protect these natural resources, provide outdoor recreational opportunities for residents and visitors alike, and ensure the Forest Preserve continues to be an asset to future generations. This new policy will serve as a guide for newly proposed projects and the evaluation of their site-specific impacts to the environment and character of the Forest Preserve."

DEC drafted the Forest Preserve Work Plan Policy with the Trail Stewardship Working Group's input and in collaboration with partners at the Adirondack Park Agency (APA). The Trail Stewardship Working Group includes members from local government, environmental groups, recreation groups, trail builders, and APA staff.

After the public comment period closes, DEC will review the comments and make necessary revisions before approving and adopting the policy. Once adopted, the policy will establish administrative procedures for assessing the impacts of construction and maintenance activities and for drafting site-specific work plans on the Forest Preserve permissible within the parameters established by Article XIV of the New York State Constitution, the Adirondack Park State Land Master Plan, the Catskill Park State Land Master Plan, Environmental Conservation Law, and DEC rules, regulations, and policies.

Public comments will be accepted on the draft Forest Preserve Work Plan Policy until Feb. 27, 2023. A copy of the draft Forest Preserve Work Plan Policy is available at DEC's website. Comments can be submitted to: Peter Frank, NYS DEC - Division of Lands and Forests, 625 Broadway, Albany, NY 12233-4254, email:

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