Adirondack Diversity Initiative seeks more funding for agenda

February, 2021

by Gwendolyn Craig, Adirondack Explorer

ALBANY — Budget negotiations for 2022 are underway and within Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s proposal is additional funding for the Adirondack Diversity Initiative. Its executive director, however, wants more.

Police reform, diversity and inclusion training, educational seminars, organizational audits, immersion programs between schools and more are on ADI’s docket this year.

Nicole Hylton-Patterson has been in her executive director role for just over a year spearheading the initiative through a $250,000 grant from the state Environmental Protection Fund. But with one other full-time staff member and a part-time assistant, the work capacity is a challenge.

“I can’t do this alone,” Hylton-Patterson said in a phone interview on Tuesday. “I need a robust staff to do work over 6-point-something million acres.”

It appears Cuomo and state legislators plan to renew $250,000 for 2022, but Hylton-Patterson would like to double that. The state is facing a nearly $15 billion deficit – the biggest in its history – but the executive director is hoping federal funding comes through and her request will be granted, she said.

Read the full article in the Albany Times Union.