Imagine Lake Placid

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To The Editor
Thirty-three years ago my family and I moved to Andes. The almost pristine beauty of this region can and does have a magical effect on you soul. But, our economy now is almost non-existent and continues to deteriorate due to the lack of jobs. Sixteen years ago I was elected Supervisor of the Town of Andes. One year later I stood before you asking for your support of the Belleayre Resort project. This project represents a $400 million private-sector investment in our economy and the region.

I listened to the opponents of this project repeat every conceivable objection from the size, traffic, sewage, the watershed, etc. and state that this resort project is not necessary to create jobs (they could do it without the project.) Now, 15 years later, I cannot think of a single business or a job that they (those who oppose the resort) have created. They continue to criticize the size of the resort, the environmental impact it will have, the traffic, etc. They choose to completely ignore the downsizing of the original project by over 60 percent, no high ridge-top development and no on-site sewer plant. Nothing you can say or do short of rejecting this project once again will ever satisfy them. It is of no concern to them that the economy continues to tank, or that our neighbors are looking for jobs that will pay them a fair wage and allow them to support their families and stay in their homes.

Finally, with the proposed $77 million Belleayre Ski Center expansion and the advent of O.R.D.A we may now see a four-season vacation destination. Could anyone imagine a Lake Placid in the middle of the Catskills? This is not the only quality-of-life issue they oppose. Last year in Andes, two elderly second homeowners died in their driveway and next door because we had no cell-phone service, due largely to our economy or lack of, and we still don’t have it today.

For the future of the Catskills and for all of us who live here and love this area, please do not turn down this project again.

Martin A. Donnelly,
Supervisor
Town of Andes