Report of the Joint Legislative Committee on The Barge Canal


At their 1958 and 1959 sessions the Senate and Assembly gave initial approval to a proposed constitutional amendment empowering the Legislature, in its discretion, to transfer the Barge Canal to the Federal Government. The amendment was submitted to the voters at the 1959 general election when it was approved and ratified.

In submitting the amendment to the voters, the Temporary President of the Senate and the Speaker of the Assembly gave assurance that if it were approved a thorough and complete study of the entire subject would be made before any final action on the proposed transfer would be considered by the Legislature. This Committee was established on July 8, 1960 to make that study. The members of the Committee have undertaken their work with a deep appreciation of its importance, scope and complexity. We are fully aware of our responsibility and of the fact that the recommendation we finally make may well determine the fate of the Barge Canal. We are also sensitive to the historical significance of the canal and its relationship with the development and growth of the Empire State. We shall be ever mindful that the future of the canal may have a fundamental influence on the industrial destiny of New York State, an influence that may recast the course of its economic evolution.

To the end that our study may be comprehensive, complete and exhaustive, we pledge our wholehearted dedication to the work ahead, firmly anticipating that we will find a sound solution to the problems confronting us.

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