Letter from Ted Potrikus
Don’t Rely on Bond Act Funds
The whole of the greater Otsego County region can hope Otsego Land Trust’s advocacy will succeed in obtaining grants through New York’s “Clean Water, Clean Air and Green Jobs Environmental Bond Act.” The Trust’s “News from the Noteworthy” column published August 10 outlines projects that surely merit Bond Act support.
Don’t be fooled, though, by the now-standard government public relations ploy of the “educational listening tour.” They’re little more than cut-and-paste roadshows repeating the same bullet-point platitudes and painting a promise of inclusion. Mega-billion bond acts, though, are famous for earmarking funds for pet projects hand-picked well before voters approve or reject the overarching ballot measure.
Add to those foregone conclusions this year’s storms buffeting high-population areas throughout New York. Those in less-dense regions should prepare to watch Albany’s Bond Act largesse flow to parts of the state where the most voters reside and where union jobs will capture the bulk of the work. Algal blooms and invasive insects are no match for flood-ravaged roads inconveniencing thousands of commuters.
To the Land Trust and like-minded organizations: Keep up the important work, but have a Plan B if you’re relying solely on money from the state.