ALBANY: Despite Save the Pine Bush’s win in the Appellate Division, Theraldson from North Dakota, may get its approval to build a hotel on occupied Karner Blue habitat in the Pine Bush.
Much ink has been spent on this proposed hotel. As this newsletter goes to press, yet another Common Council Planning Committee meeting will have been held on Thursday, November 6, to discuss the Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (FSEIS) for the hotel.
In August, the rare worm snake, a species of special concern, was found by DEC staff on the site of the proposed hotel. This snake has not been found north of Rockland County for twenty years, not since it was last found, near this site. Clearly, the worm snake likes living in this particular part of the Pine Bush.
The FSEIS written by the developer’s representative, goes on a great length about how the site is unsuitable for the worm snake, and really, the snake would not want to live there. Included is how the developer will build a fence that will be put 18 inches below the ground to make sure no stray reptiles or amphibians come onto the site from somewhere else. During construction, the developer promises, all amphibians and reptiles will be carefully evicted from the site.
The FSEIS talks about how generous the developer is to promise to give $2500 a year for Karner Blue habitat restoration. The donations are to continue for 100 years. Save the Pine Bush asks: who is going to be around 100 years from now to make sure the developer made all of its payments?
Sooooo, what to do? The most important thing that you can do today is contact your Common Council member and ask them to please vote no on the hotel in the Pine Bush. No more development in the Pine Bush. A hotel can be built anywhere, there is only one Pine Bush.
Find your Common Council member by clicking here or call City Hall at 434-5284.
Published in the Nov/Dec 2008 Newletter