The following comment is from Fred Kirby 8/16/2013
Why can't Oregon local and state politicians deal in specifics. I totally agree, if Mr. Keizer needs the property, make an offer. The people will respond. This package deal sucks! Appears like the three half walnut shell game - which shell is the pea under? Keizer is the Sarah Winchester of golf. Keep building and all will be well. I fully understand Keizer's need to keep building courses so deep pockets golfers will come to play the "new" course. Soon there will be other new and better courses across the US. Then what. I'm also surprised, based on past action, that when Keizer made an offer, our local politicians did not rush to be first to say we'll give you the property, we'll never tax you, provided you promise to hire somebody some day.
OPRD will hold two open house meetings to discuss Bandon Property exchange proposal
July 25, 2013
Bandon and Mt Vernon OR - Oregon Parks and Recreation Department staff will hold two open houses to discuss a proposed property exchange involving part of the Bandon State Natural Area. One meeting will be held in Bandon on the south coast on August 16, 2013, and the other will be in Mt. Vernon in Grant County on August 19. Both meetings will last from 7-9 p.m.
Staff will share more information and answer questions about the proposal to trade 280 acres of the 878-acre Bandon State Natural Area to Bandon Biota, a private landholding entity owned by Michael Keiser, owner of Bandon Dunes and other local golf courses. Bandon Biota proposes to use part of the land to create a 27-hole walking links golf course.
Under the proposal, Bandon Biota would pay at least $300,000 for gorse control on nearby state park properties, transfer two land parcels near Bandon totaling 208 acres into the state park system, and pay as much as $2.95 million to help purchase two other properties: oceanfront property in Lincoln County known as Whale Cove, and 6,100 acres in Grant County near Mt. Vernon for use as a future state park.
Staff will present maps and other information on the properties
during the open houses and answer questions:
Bandon Conference and Community Center,
1200 W 11th Street SW, Bandon OR,
Aug. 16, 7-9 p.m.
Mt Vernon Community Hall,
640 Ingle Street, Mt Vernon OR,
Aug 19, 7-9 p.m.
Comments on the proposal are also being taken by email (email@example.com),
and by regular mail to: OPRD, ATTN: Bandon Proposal, 725 Summer St NE Suite C, Salem OR 97301.
Comments received before September 16 will be delivered to the Commission before their meeting in Condon.
Maps and text about the proposal are available online at http://www.oregon.gov/oprd/pages/commission-bandon.aspx, including audio of public testimony taken at the July 2013 Commission meeting in Coos Bay.
Here is the Proposal:
In brief: Bandon Biota will get 280 acres of non-oceanfront in Bandon State
Natural Area, so that Keiser may build a 27-hole golf course. In exchange, OPRD will get a 111-acre oceanfront parcel to the south of Bandon SNA, a 97-acre parcel on the Coquille River adjacent to Bullards Beach State Park, and will pay the full acquisition price of $2.5 million for the 6,100 acre Grouse Mountain Ranch in Grant County. Additionally, Bandon Biota will contribute money for purchase of an 11-acre parcel in Whale Cove, and provide at least $300,000 for gorse control services in Coos and Curry Counties.
Oregon Parks and Recreation Dept.
Attn: Chris Havel
725 Summer St. NE
Salem, OR 97301
I want to make it very clear that I support the right of any business, such as Bandon Dunes, to buy land and set up business in our county. The Dunes Golf Course has done its part to put Bandon on the map and provide jobs for people in the community. Entrepreneurs like Michael Keiser are a real value to our economy through the production and generation of wealth that is rebounding locally, several times over.
However, I do not support the use of public tax dollars or public lands for the sole benefit of private industry. I do not support the use of non-governmental agencies as a front for business, but I recognize that it is the government systems that dogmatic bureaucracies have created, which have caused these perversions in the natural market. This is why we need to get government out of the business of owning property and let the free market dictate the situation.
Oregon Parks and Recreation Department has too much territory in its inventory and should just sell the property outright to The Dunes Gold Course and not turn this project into some kind of taxing scheme---all to the detriment of the taxpayer…..Sincerely, Rob Taylor
Continue to Read More of the story---
Message from Oregon Coast Alliance
From: Cameron La Follette, Oregon Coast Alliance (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Re: Bandon Biota Exchange
Attached is a Parks map showing approximate boundaries of land currently owned by Bandon Biota in the vicinity of Bandon State Natural Area. Also attached is ORCA's testimony to the Parks Commission about this exchange, describing our strong reservations about it.
If Bandon-area residents can make the Parks Commission meeting and testify in person, that would be very valuable to the Commission. One of the things they must do is inquire whether local communities and counties support an exchange like this, which has been proposed by others rather than OPRD itself. The Commission needs to hear from you! This is one of the largest exchanges (if not the largest) OPRD has considered; it is the first test of Parks' new "overwhelming benefit" rule in exchanges initiated by others; it deals with tremendous questions of land and policy; and will greatly affect people in the Bandon area.
The location for the OPRD Commission meeting has been changed. It will now be held at:
Meeting on July 17 2013
Starting at 10:00 AM
The Red Lion Hotel
1313 N. Bayshore Drive
Coos Bay, OR 97420
There is an Executive meeting before the public workshop. The Executive meeting starts at 8:30am
Please do attend the Commission and speak if you are able. If not, Parks
would appreciate letters and emails through August 9; the earliest
decision date will be during the September 24-25 Commission meeting in Condon. Emails to OPRD may be sent to: email@example.com, or to OPRD.firstname.lastname@example.org
I'm happy to answer questions or provide further information.
Cameron -- Cameron La Follette
Land Use Director
Oregon Coast Alliance
P.O. Box 857
Astoria, OR 97103
From: Cameron La Follette, Land Use Director, Oregon Coast Alliance
Re: Bandon State Natural Area exchange
Bandon Biota (a Michael Keiser organization) and Oregon Parks and Recreation Dept. have created an initial framework for an exchange agreement in Coos County. This would entail OPRD giving Bandon Biota a portion of Bandon State Natural Area in exchange for property, cash and gorse control services. No details are available yet, as the parties are writing out the specifics.
The Oregon Parks and Recreation Commission will meet in Coos Bay on July 17, 2013 to listen to public comment on this proposal. The OPRD Commission will not vote at that meeting. About two weeks before the July 17 meeting, details of the proposal will be publicly available in Commission agenda meeting materials. The public will be invited to speak to the proposal, verbally or in writing, at the July 17th meeting; people can also provide comments to OPRD either before the meeting or afterwards, through the end of July.
The earliest the OPRD Commission would vote on this proposal is at its September 2013 meeting, which will be held in Condon.
Oregon Coast Alliance opposed this exchange the last time it was publicly considered, in summer of 2011. If the new proposal is the same or similar as the last one, our concerns remain unchanged. There are several very serious grounds for opposition, but principal among them is Parks' Administrative Rules, which require that in any exchange initiated by others, there be "an Overwhelming Public Benefit to the Parks System." Furthermore, that overwhelming public benefit must be "resounding, clear and obvious." The administrative rules set a
very high bar for the Parks Commission in considering a land exchange: overwhelming public benefit to the Parks system. ORCA has not seen any evidence to date that this proposed exchange meets that bar or even comes close.
Furthermore, the purpose of this land exchange is likely to be another Bandon Dunes golf course. There are already at least five Bandon Dunes golf courses in the Bandon area. This kind of recreation is not nearly as diverse as that provided by a natural-area type of park such as Bandon State Natural Area.
We will send out the OPRD details of this exchange proposal as soon as they are available in early July. You may also contact Oregon Parks and Recreation Department directly for further information:
I'm also happy to answer any questions you may have.
Cameron La Follette
Oregon Coast Alliance