Tonight, the Board of Selectmen will convene about the Conservation Restriction on the St. Mark’s Golf Course. Based on a vote last Thursday, they will be adjusting their plans for how to proceed.
On Thursday night, the Conservation Commission voted not to co-hold the CR for the Town’s property. The position was counter to the board’s 4-1 vote and advice of Town Counsel. Instead, the commission sided with the unanimous recommendation of the Golf Course Conservation Restriction Committee.
For the pro and con arguments, you can read my post on the previous meeting on the issue. In the end, con arguments ruled for the majority of the board. Instead, they supported having the CR held solely by the Sudbury Valley Trustees.
The agenda for tonight’s BOS meeting was posted prior to Thursday’s vote (in compliance with Open Meeting Law.) Therefore it, doesn’t specify what course of action the board will discuss.
Given Town Counsel’s past advice that the Town co-hold the CR, they may discuss alternative methods for pursuing that. But I’m not sure there is a viable alternative. In which case, presumably they will talk about next steps for finalizing the CR with SVT.
The meeting is scheduled for 6:00 pm in the Town House Hearing Room.
This is good news.
Opinions from expert groups and committees must be free to give, and stick with, their opinions …. and not be swayed by alternate opinions rendered by politicians and lawyers.
It is heartening to see all four of our independent, expert committees come to the same conclusion, regarding who should hold and enforce the Conservation Restrictions on our golf course land.
These four committees included the Golf Course Design Committee, the Golf Course Conservation Restriction Committee, the Open Space Preservation Committee, and the Conservation Commission itself. All came to the same, sensible conclusion. …. Let it be the responsibility of the Sudbury Valley Trustees SVT, because SVT has vast experience, no conflict of interest, and will guarantee that local politics, in future, do not interfere with the intent to preserve this open land, for ever, as voted by Town Meeting last year.
Sadly David, that actually did not happen. Despite the clear recommendations of the independent committees you cite who very carefully studied all this, the BOS, under the leadership of Dan Kolenda, instead, chose to listen only to the town counsel, Aldo Cipriano, who expressed the opinion that the CR be co-held with the ConComm and a qualified Land Trust. They also discussed that perhaps they should look around for someone other than SVT (Sudbury Valley Trustees) as a co-holder- despite the fact that the special counsel Atty Legere assured them that SVT is the most qualified, experienced and respected Land Trust in the area. BOS member Bonnie Phaneuf spoke in favor of SVT.