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Enviro group sues APA over ACR permit

Protect the Adirondacks joined by others

Mount Morris is home to the Big Tupper Ski Area.

Mount Morris is home to the Big Tupper Ski Area. Photo by Andy Flynn.

— The first shot against the recently approved Adirondack Club and Resort has been fired.

Protect the Adirondacks!, the Sierra Club, and three nearby landowners filed suit March 20 against the Adirondack Park Agency, the Department of Environmental Conservation, and the developer proposing the 700-plus unit project in the Town of Tupper Lake, which was approved by the Agency on Jan. 20.

The Agency approved the controversial ACR project with a 10-1 vote in January. Before the 11 board members cast their votes — in alphabetical order — they explained why they voted yes or no. Almost all agreed that the review process, which took almost eight years, needed improvement. But that didn’t stop most from approving the resort planned around the Big Tupper Ski Area on Mount Morris.

“People have lost a lot of sleep over this,” said DEC designee Judy Drabicki.

“This brings the opportunity of economic development to Tupper Lake,” said Commissioner Bill Thomas.

Commissioner Richard Booth was the only one to vote against the project, citing three main reasons: the sponsors failed to provide realistic sales figures; no wildlife inventory was required or completed, and there was no review on how the project would impact wildlife; and the project is not consistent with the APA’s resource management zoning.

“I think these three flaws that I mention have caused me to conclude that this project is not consistent with the plan,” Booth said. “There is an undue adverse impact.”

Many residents and businesspeople from Tupper Lake were at the Jan. 20 meeting in support of the project, including Tupper Lake Village Mayor and Franklin County Legislator Paul Maroun, Jim LaValley of the ARISE (Adirondack Residents Intent on Saving Their Economy) group, Mark Moeller of the Tupper Lake Business Community, and David Tomberlin of the Tupper Lake Chamber of Commerce Board and Tupper Lake Town Board.

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