LEWISTON — The golf course developer interested in purchasing approximately 11 acres of publicly owned land failed to attend a public hearing on the matter Monday night, stalling Town Board action because some officials believe he wants to buy additional surrounding property.

Michael Dowd, a Lewiston attorney and principal in Old Creek Development, spoke to individual board members in the days leading up to the hearing, according to officials.

But what they lacked — and what prevented them from acting Monday night — was an official request that he intended to pursue an additional six acres of land.

“We know he’s going to come in and request it,” Councilman Daniel Kilmer said.

But without an official letter making the request, it would be inappropriate for the board to act, said Supervisor Fred Newlin, with support from Town Attorney Joseph Leone.

The board heard from several outspoken residents about the proposal to sell the 10.88 acres of public land to Old Creek for $147,000.

Many wanted more specific information about the plans for the land from the Town Board.

“I’d like to see where the property line is actually going to be,” said resident Frank Fracassi, about out-of-date maps displayed for the public before the meeting.

But without the developer in the room — because he was serving as legal counsel for the Porter Town Board during its meeting — such information was unavailable.

“He needs to be here to tell us,” Councilman D. James Langlois said.

Through his conversations with Dowd, Langlois said he learned that the additional six acres is needed to meet the acreage Dowd’s third-party developer wants for the proposed golf course.

The developer also hopes to have the deal for the land done by the end of the year, Langlois said.

The third-party developer is known to be a group connected to the Seneca Nation of Indians.

Lewiston officials initially entered into an agreement in Oct. 2002 with Old Creek Development to develop a course on mostly privately owned land bound by the Robert Moses Parkway, and Raymond, Pletcher and Creek roads.

Officials set a public information meeting to be held at 6 p.m. Dec. 29 in Town Hall to discuss the possible sale of the land, the exact size of which officials did not know.

A total price for the larger acreage also was not known Monday.

The price of $147,000 discussed initially for the 10.88 acres was to cover the price of the land — appraised at $50,000 this past summer — as well as about $100,000 in previously paid engineering costs.

Attorneys told board members a public hearing is not required in order to sell public land, though it has been the common format to the golf course development process.

They also recommended the small portion not be sold Monday, because there were legal questions that they believed needed to be answered before the board could act to sell only the 10.88 acres.

The legal issues included whether the state legislature needed to approve the sale, as well as possible issues that the land has restrictions on its deed.

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