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Be wary of purchase for open space in EL

Beth A. Hogan Niantic

Publication: The Day

Published 11/12/2013 12:00 AM
Updated 11/11/2013 03:28 PM

I appreciate the Board of Selectmen pursing the road of due diligence in considering the offer to purchase open space proposed by The Woodsmen's Land Trust. Please consider:

1. The Woodsmen's land Trust does not have the non-exempt status of a non-profit because it failed to file three years' worth of 990 IRS filings.

2. Was the original offer of 166 acres (Gurley Brook Preserve) presented to the Board of Selectman prior to the open space grant application?

3. Now, there a new offer by The Woodsmen's Land trust for 166 acres Gurley Brook Preserve plus two small parcels with easement access from New England National for the total price of $2.3 million. Shouldn't this include New England National's withdrawal of all litigation matters against the town of East Lyme?

4. Why is time of the essence in pursing this purchase by Dec. 31? One reason cited given at a planning commission meeting by John Ellis and a KSB Associate was the DEEP grant expires. In the Board of Selectmen meeting, the reason was National New England Trust needs the tax write-off.

5. Does the recent refinance proposal of the KSB foreclosure (Gurley Brook Preserve) contingent on the town's purchase ?

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