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Will Clifton Park follow Ballston's lake lead?

Officials in the Town of Ballston have been pushing for a zoning change that could have an impact on properties with water drainage that heads into Ballston Lake.

Known as the Ballston Lake Overlay District (BLOD), the legislation seeks to protect the lake by bolstering environmental protection and offering density bonuses to developers whose build with public water and sewer in the area.

However, as some residents have pointed out during public hearings on the matter at Ballston Town Hall, Ballston only accounts for roughly two-thirds of the drainage problem. Neighboring Clifton Park also borders the lake, and at the moment, similar efforts are not being made on its part.

There are 232 tax-paying properties on the lake in the Town of Ballston, said Frank Shipp, vice president of the Ballston Lake Improvement Association. He said roughly one-third of those 232 people are in Clifton Park.

Shipp says that it is important for Clifton Park to protect the lake from its side.

"Should both towns have the same legislation? Of course they should," he said. "It's not efficient at the current time. Of course we want Clifton Park to come on board."

Town of Ballston Supervisor Patti Southworth agrees, and said she and Shipp have both gone to Clifton Park Supervisor Philip Barrett with the town's concerns.

"[Barrett] said when we have our plan in place, he will definitely give it to his planner for review," said Southworth. "If we do indeed institute an overlay, it will help the lake, but not as well as if Clifton Park also institutes a similar plan."

Southworth said she would like Ballston's Town Board to submit a formal request to Clifton Park if the BLOD does pass.

"What is the point of going back to Clifton Park at this time?" asked Shipp.

"Until the Town of Ballston passes the regulations they are going to pass, there is no point in us having meetings with Clifton Park," he continued.

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