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It’s official: West Brook plot is now ‘Charles R. Wood Park’

Ownership debate afoot

The West Brook environmental project and festival grounds in Lake George village formally got a new name this week as an agreement was made with the Charles Wood Foundation to name the development ‘Charles R. Wood Park’ in exchange for a $750,000 donation. Meanwhile, county, village and town officials debated future ownership of the park after county supervisors, in a straw vote taken May 18, indicated they wanted to turn it over to the local municipalities. The concept concerns Lake George Mayor Robert Blais, who said such an ownership change might disrupt grant funding.

The West Brook environmental project and festival grounds in Lake George village formally got a new name this week as an agreement was made with the Charles Wood Foundation to name the development ‘Charles R. Wood Park’ in exchange for a $750,000 donation. Meanwhile, county, village and town officials debated future ownership of the park after county supervisors, in a straw vote taken May 18, indicated they wanted to turn it over to the local municipalities. The concept concerns Lake George Mayor Robert Blais, who said such an ownership change might disrupt grant funding. Photo by Thom Randall.

— Blais warned that such a move could cause problems with state grants, as the county had served as lead agency in the development project.

“It would be extremely difficult to move the project forward if the county got out,” he said.

Blais added that with a 50-50 town/village ownership, the cost to the town to buy out the county’s share was calculated at $1.2 million, and the cost to the village — which now owns 38 percent —would be about $250,000.

He said county supervisors were convening June 5 to discuss park ownership.

“Stay tuned,” he said. “The meeting will be interesting.”

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