Blackthorne can use existing campsites pending new site plan deadline
Melanie Lekocevic is reporting for Columbia-Greene Media the Durham Town Board has unanimously agreed to allow Blackthorne Resort to operate existing campsites and resubmit a new site plan application by August 1. The resort has proposed adding 30 new campsites to its property, a plan that has drawn concern from residents because existing sites have not been approved. At the start of the workshop meeting on April 6, Town Supervisor Shawn Marriott called for an executive session at the conclusion of the public meeting to discuss possible pending litigation and to come up with a solution. “They have retained counsel and they wanted an opportunity to speak to that counsel,” Marriott said of Blackthorne Resort. At the conclusion of the 45-minute closed-door session, Marriott announced the resort had withdrawn its site plan application. The board then approved a motion that would allow the operation of existing campsites on the property until a new site plan is submitted. No further work may be performed on any new sites until all approvals are met. Regular repair and standard maintenance on existing sites are permitted. Resident Mike Lillis challenged the board’s decision saying, “So the board has approved them using sites that have not been approved?” He went on to say it was a bad decision to allow unapproved, existing campsites to be used. Marriott said the point was to come up with a solution that would move the process forward. The town will get the agreement in writing, town attorney Tal Rappleyea said. Marriott said the new site plan, when submitted, must show the resort's every lot and campsite and will need Department of Health approval. “That is first and foremost so we have a clear overview of everything that is going on there,” Marriott said. If Blackthorne Resort complies with the town’s decision, the town will refrain from violation proceedings until the August 1 deadline, Marriott said. Read the full story at HudsonValley360 [dot] com.