Thursday, February 26, 2015

Capital Region Water Board Rejects Sale Of Clarks Valley Land

Capital Region Water’s Board of Directors voted 3-1 Wednesday to reject the proposed Agreement of Sale for 384 acres of property in Clarks Valley in Dauphin County at their February meeting. This decision comes after almost 24 months of discussions, a two month public comment period, and two public hearings.
“We truly appreciate the public comments that we’ve received concerning this proposed sale”, said Capital Region Water CEO Shannon Williams. “The comments received from our customers, neighbors, and partners during the deliberation of this sale overwhelmingly supported the long-term conservation of Capital Region Water’s property in Clarks Valley.”
Under the proposed Agreement of Sale, the land would have been purchased by The Conservation Fund using funds from Fort Indiantown Gap’s Army Compatible Use Buffer Program and the Game Commission and transferred to the Game Commission for permanent ownership including oil, gas, mineral and timber rights.
“While selling this land to the Pennsylvania Game Commission would have led to long-term conservation, this decision was weighted by the fact that the property would no longer be managed by people directly affected by the quality of water flowing past the property, as it was originally intended over 70 years ago when the property was acquired. Capital Region Water takes great pride in acting as the steward of our community’s drinking water as was reflected in the process leading up to the vote last night,” said Williams.
Chairman Marc Kurowski expressed interest in proceeding with the Agreement of Sale as a means to further evaluate next steps in the best interest of Capital Region Water while retaining the ability to accept the offer proposed.
Under the proposal, 150 days were provided to complete a due diligence review further determining whether the sale was in the best interest of Capital Region Water in terms of the water system, water quality, land preservation, and public interest.
The Board thanked The Conservation Fund, Fort Indiantown Gap, and the Pennsylvania Game Commission for their efforts negotiating a potential sale of the property. As trusted partners, their goals are closely aligned in ensuring the protection of Capital Region Water’s land and water resources for current and future generations.
Recreational use of the property will not change as this parcel has been enrolled under the Public Access Program – Cooperative Forest Game Use Project Agreement with the PA Game Commission since 2001. Hunting and hiking are currently permitted on the parcel and will continue into the future.
For more information, visit the Capital Region Water’s website.  Customers with questions and concerns can also contact Capital Region Water by calling 888-510-0606 or by emailing:
Capital Region Water Would Gain From Land Sale

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