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Looking At Lesser-Known Referendums On Election Day Ballot

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On the back of every ballot, there are six questions that voters are being asked to consider on Election Day, and while referendums about casino gambling and a proposal to extend the retirement age of judges has received some attention, the other four have not. NY1's Zack Fink filed the following report.

Two of next Tuesday's ballot proposals to amend the state constitution involve land far upstate in the Adirondack Mountains.

Ballot proposal 4 would settle a disputed title for residents who live along the shoreline of Raquette Lake in Hamilton County. The constitutional change would grant the owners title, and in exchange, pay into a fund to purchase more land that will remain "forever wild."

"It is a win win for both for the state of New York and for the shoreline owners along Raquette Lake so that they can have clear title to their properties and be able to get a mortgage, be able to sell their properties in the future," said David Gibson of Adirondack Wild.

The second Adirondack proposal allows a company to expand its mining operation to an adjacent preserve. In exchange, the firm would give the state at least the same amount of land. The company says that the swap will preserve jobs, but environmentalists are opposed.

"We don't believe that mining on the forest reserve is a good precedent, first of all," Gibson said. "Second of all, the company, NYCO, which is a good employer in Essex County, has alternatives. This is being proposed for the convenience of a corporation."

Another ballot initiative deals with disabled veterans, specifically providing better opportunities for those veterans to obtain civil service government jobs.

"Civil service jobs, particularly in New York State, tend to be some of the most stable jobs out there. They also give you an opportunity to give back to the community, earn a competitive salary, get a pension, etc.," said Derek Bennett of the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America. "Now, if you're disabled, there is a big barrier to entry for many other jobs."

Bennett is an Iraq war veteran. He says that any change that gives more civil service credits is welcome, since so many veterans are coming back disabled from Iraq and Afghanistan.

"More veterans are coming back disabled than they have been in the past because luckily, more of us are living through wounds that we would have otherwise died on the battlefield," he said.

The final proposal would allow municipalities to exclude debt limits when it comes to constructing sewage facilities.

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