Attorney: Land swap unnecessary for Latham Water Tank project

"The federal stimulus funds are funding everything to make that new tower in Loudonville operational," Myers said.

After being asked if the town would not need to strike a deal with Guptill Holding Corp. in regards to the easement since the project is being funded by federal stimulus funds and the Airport Authority, Frazer said, "That's correct."

Town Supervisor Paula Mahan issued a statement on Monday, Oct. 26, that said, "The Guptill family owns two parcels of property which are of strong interest to the Town of Colonie. These two parcels are immediately adjacent to one another. The first parcel has to do with the easement required to complete the Latham Water District extension.

The second parcel is an extremely sensitive environmental area which the town has had a strong interest in obtaining for many years. It makes perfect sense for the town leadership to discuss all available options." She referred all other questions to Bailey.

The town holds special interest in the wetland area and kettle bog described in the resolution as obtaining the property is part of the Town of Colonie's Comprehensive Plan, which lists the property as a rare asset.

The kettle bog is rich in soil and has a unique quality which requires its preservation, Town Attorney Michael Magguilli said.

But while one of the town's long-term objectives has been to obtain the bog, the easement that allowed the town to use land on Guptill Holding Corp. property would not be paid for with a land swap.

The resolution in which both projects are mentioned in relation to each other authorizes "the town supervisor to enter into agreements for the acquisition and conveyance of real property and necessary construction in relation to the Latham Water Tank Removal Project."

This resolution has recently become the focus of a campaign mailer distributed to residents who live in the vicinity of 200A Onderdonk Road-near the land the town is considering swapping-sent out by Colonie Republicans, implying that if obtained, Guptill Holding Corp. could begin mining on the land.

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