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NYPA Continues Progress in Transferring Ownership of Surplus St. Lawrence-FDR Project Lands

Connie Cullen

December 5, 2007


MASSENA—The New York Power Authority (NYPA) is making progress in its efforts to convey almost 600 acres of surplus lands from its St. Lawrence-Franklin D. Roosevelt Power Project to local municipalities and adjacent private property owners in several North Country communities.  NYPA is returning these shoreline-area properties as part of a comprehensive settlement agreement reached during the relicensing of the hydroelectric project here.

“The Power Authority remains committed to transferring surplus lands within the St. Lawrence-FDR project boundary.  We have conveyed close to 400 acres and are working diligently to transfer the remaining properties,” said Roger B. Kelley, NYPA president and chief executive officer.  “I’m looking forward to the completion of this relicensing commitment so these lands can be put to productive use by their new owners.”

In October 2003, NYPA received a new 50-year operating license for the St. Lawrence-FDR project from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.  Under the terms of the comprehensive settlement agreement with the St. Lawrence Local Government Task Force, NYPA agreed to transfer the surplus lands.  Lands were transferred to the municipalities at no cost.  Residents can purchase parcels adjoining their properties for fair market value.

NYPA is working on the land conveyances with the local government task force, which consists of municipal and school district entities with properties within the original boundary of the St. Lawrence-FDR project.

NYPA has offered almost all 600 acres of surplus lands to the towns of Massena, Louisville, Waddington and Lisbon; the village of Waddington; and adjoining private landowners in those municipalities.  To date, approximately 379 acres have been transferred to those combined parties, including all the properties going to the municipalities.  Most of the remaining 221 acres slated for the adjoining private landowners have been offered to them.  This includes several acres originally conveyed to the town of Waddington that will now be offered to the adjoining private landowners, at the request of the town.

NYPA began sending out letters of intent in May 2006 to adjoining property owners in Lisbon, Waddington, Louisville and Massena.  A total of 490 letters went out.

In Lisbon, 89 percent of the adjoining property owners have already opted to purchase shoreline-area property adjacent to their lands.  NYPA sent out 126 letters in Lisbon, and received 113 responses requesting contracts, which were mailed to the respondents.

NYPA sent 219 letters to adjoining property owners in the town and village of Waddington.  A total of 129 of the 141 respondents requested contracts.  To date, 122 contracts have been mailed to Waddington landowners with the remaining seven contracts expected to be sent shortly.  Twelve respondents indicated they are undecided.

A total of 82 of the 143 adjoining property owners in Louisville have responded to the letters of intent.  Of the 73 landowners that requested contracts, 49 have had contracts mailed to them.  The remaining contracts are expected to be mailed in the next few weeks.  Eight respondents are undecided and one property owner has chosen not to proceed.

In Massena, parcels have been conveyed to four of the five adjoining landowners with the fifth expected to be conveyed shortly.

Adjoining property owners have two years from the date of the letter of intent to decide whether to purchase the offered properties.

The Power Authority has committed to reinvest the proceeds from the sale of the parcels to the adjoining landowners in specific public works or economic support measures requested by the municipalities.  The amounts spent in each community would approximate the sum collected for land sold in the respective locality.  Discussions have been ongoing with the localities on how to use those proceeds within each of the municipalities.

About NYPA:

■    NYPA uses no tax money or state credit.  It finances its operations through the sale of bonds and revenues earned in large part through sales of electricity.  ■    NYPA is a leader in promoting energy-efficiency, new energy technologies and electric transportation initiatives.  ■    It is the nation’s largest state-owned electric utility, with 18 generating facilities in various parts of the state and more than 1,400 circuit-miles of transmission lines.

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