Tourism creates opportunity
To The Editor:
Please register my voice/vote as one in favor of the construction of the Belleayre Resort and the development of Belleayre Mountain Ski Center to the fullest extent possible under the state constitution.
As a business owner in the Catskill Region, I have personally watched the decline of the economy and believe that maximizing our tourism assets is the only way to reverse this decline. Our location in the Catskill Forest Preserve and in the NYC Watershed precludes any major economic activity that is not related to tourism. Tourists come in, spend money, then leave. That is exactly what we need. They support the tax base without adding additional demands for services.
The region around Belleayre Mountain is already designated as an intensive use region and the facility exists to serve as an economic catalyst. People visit the ski center, fall in love with the region, and spend dollars in gas stations and gift shops. The people who work in those places have jobs and income to maintain their homes and their properties.
A percentage of those visitors love the area so much that they will want to return and stay overnight. But there are very, very few rooms in our area to accommodate the number who wish to stay. We need them to be able to stay because then their next step is to buy a weekend home. They visit more often and spend more money. In addition to retail services, the homeowner needs everything from legal and medical services to landscaping, plumbing, construction and every other type of service. This in turn creates more local income, more jobs. Our local economy needs the jobs at Belleayre, the jobs at the resort and the jobs in the community that spin off from them.
Belleayre Mountain was brilliantly conceived and worked amazingly well as an economic catalyst for the last century. Allowing its build out to maximum potential and adding a private resort adjacent to it will allow Belleayre Mountain to function in a similar fashion through the next century.
I believe all environmental questions have been asked and answered and that the build outs should be permitted immediately so construction can begin.