400+ attended a public hearing held by State Parks in Kenmore on February 9, to receive comments on a proposed “land exchange” at Saint Edward, officially known as a Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) “land conversion.” There was a 30-minute presentation conducted by State Parks Planner, Michael Hankinson, and Real Estate Developer, Kevin Daniels; followed by public comments from 7 – 9:20 pm during which 68 people, spoke for up to 2 minutes each almost evenly divided between pro and con. Go to Saint Edward Planning for A COMPLETE TRANSCRIPT You may continue to submit written comments on “Provide Comments”
Hankinson’s list of items currently under negotiation with the developer includes:
1. Perpetual public access – unclear
2. Right of First Offer – if Daniels buys the property and later decides to sell it, State Parks wants first right to negotiate to reacquire it before Daniels can sell it to another party;
3. Reversionary clause – property reverts to State Parks if Daniels violates a condition stipulated in the deed of transfer (didn’t say what those stipulations would be);
4. Bankruptcy – if Daniels goes bankrupt, State Parks desires property back;
5. Public access to the seminary building – what, when, where, how, and under what conditions, etc.?
6. Gym public access – State Parks wants ranger offices to stay in gym building;
7. Resort fee – $$ to cover the Discover Pass of hotel/resort patrons;
8. Law enforcement – will the park ranger be the law enforcement officer on hotel property?
Hearing Notice incorrectly states “Saint Edward State Park will not be sold.” The 4.99 acres under negotiation will, in fact, be sold should the agreement between State Parks and Daniels Real Estate be concluded. Also, the statement “We don’t expect the park entrance road to be widened or altered as a result of this project” is virtually meaningless. It leaves the door open for circumstances to force a change to the entry in future.