Property Rights Foundation of America®

Peter J. La Grasse
250 Lanfear Road, P.O. Box 75
Stony Creek, N.Y. 12878
(518) 696-2332

Comments at Public Hearing, 12/2/08 in City of Glens Falls, N.Y.
on granting The Nature Conservancy (TNC) tax-exempt loan
to pay for the purchase by TNC of Finch Pruyn land in the Adirondacks, New York State.

I am an elected town official for the Town of Stony Creek, N.Y., where TNC has purchased 1,230 acres of Finch Pruyn lands, part of the purchase TNC wants to refinance with tax-exempt bonds. I have held the post of Assessor since 1976 in the Town of Stony Creek. I am a local resident in Stony Creek.

I am opposed to this grant of tax-exempt to TNC because it is a bail out supported by public funds for a purchase of land that is contrary to the public interest.

All of the land involved in this purchase has a history of forestry use, which support and employ the people of this region. The planned diminishment of this industry and the diminishment of local employment are contrary to the public good.

I would like to specifically comment on the purchase by TNC of (6) contiguous parcels, (4) in Stony Creek and (2) in Thurman, as an example of the loss to the community of the potential residential development this sale has with just this small glimpse of TNC purchase.

The parcels in this study are on Hilderbrandt Road in Stony Creek and Mud Street in Thurman, as the same road's name changes. In Stony Creek, the parcels, in total 507.24 acres, are zoned by the APA as Resource Management or 42 acres per house. In Thurman there are 270.7 acres and approximately 230 acres are zoned Low Intensity or 3.2 acres per house, the remaining 40 acres are 42 acre per house.

The zoning just north and east on Mud Street and Zaltz Road of the parcels in Thurman is zoned moderate intensity, or 1.3 acres per house. The APA has designated this area as a very significant area for land use development. This sale runs counter to these plans. This land is very developable. In Stony Creek the acreage could generate 12 - 42 acre homesteads or farms. In Thurman, the 230 acres could yield 70 parcels and the remaining 40 acres zoned at 42 acres would allow one house. While I do not envision development anywhere in this range, the good road frontage, which is maintained by the towns, through three of the six parcels, would provide ample modest development, with the back land potentially continuing in logging practice. Through these parcels there is 20,195 feet of road frontage. This is land that TNC plans to close to development, to close for future community development for families, farms, homesteads, contrary to the pattern of development in the region, and to the long-standing APA zoning designation.

This study is just a glimpse of what impact the 161,000 acre purchase of TNC will do to close down the Adirondacks. I oppose this tax-exempt loan because it will further the annihilation of our community for future generations.

Thank you.

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© 2008 Peter J. LaGrasse
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