Updated Thu, May 30, 2013 10:29 am
Athens County has been awarded a $58,237 Clean Ohio grant to purchase land adjacent to Strouds Run State Park for conservation.
The purchase price for the property is $63,600, according to County Planner Lori Burchett. Closing on the 22.72 acres is tentatively scheduled for Aug. 1, Burchett said, although that date needs to be confirmed with the Ohio Public Works Commission, which awarded the grant.
There is a match requirement for the grant, and initially it was thought that the gap between the purchase price and the appraisal on the property could cover the match. Basically, the property owner would be selling it for less than it was worth. As it turned out, that wouldn’t work because the appraisal was lower than expected.
Various factors come into play — for example, the value of the timber on the property and local in-kind resources for the grant — but the bottom line is that about $8,300 in local match is needed, Burchett said.
Phil Cantino of Athens Conservancy said the organization will cover that cost. It is in addition to $2,000 that Athens Conservancy paid for an appraisal.
Cantino said the conservancy is accepting donations from the public to help cover the expense, and contributions can be sent to Athens Conservancy, P.O. 2281, Athens, Ohio 45701.
The property is off Della Drive, at the far end of East State Street, and is owned by JoAnne Bean of Indiana.
It was the Athens Conservancy that approached the county commissioners about buying the land.
Conservancy members David Gedeon and Cantino have said previously that the reason for purchasing the property is to protect it from logging and the possible mining of soil, thus preserving the “viewshed” and protecting Dow Lake from silt pollution that could result from such activities.