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Clifton Park, Halfmoon join Greenway

Two towns in Saratoga County joined the Hudson River Valley Greenway last month after becoming eligible last July.

Halfmoon and Clifton Park passed resolutions last month to join the Greenway after presentations at their town board meetings by Greenway officials, who urged the towns to work with the more than 247 towns already in the Greenway.

The Greenway promotes the growth of municipalities by providing regional resources for the protection of natural and cultural resources.

I see value whenever a number of municipalities look at an issue collectively, said Nelson Ronsvalle, the grant coordinator for Halfmoon, who has worked as a liaison between Greenway and town officials.

According to Mark Castiglione, acting executive director of the Hudson River Valley Greenway, 10 of 28 eligible towns in Saratoga County have joined since July.

The Hudson Valley Greenway is a state agency, created by the Greenway Act of 1991. It provides grants and technical assistance to communities within the Greenway for development along the river valley.

Ronsvalle said the grant programs offered by the Greenway are great. He also said other grant agencies know the importance of the being a part of the Greenway, and are more likely to issue funding to a town in the Greenway.

The resolutions adopted by the towns support the five Greenway criteria, which are regional planning, economic development, public access, natural and cultural resource protection, and heritage and environmental education.

"The popularity of the Greenway program continues to be reflected in the increasing number of participating Greenway communities," Castiglione said. "These communities understand the benefits of working together on a regional basis to better plan the future."

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