The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is seeking public comment on a draft recreation management plan (RMP) for the Western Lassiter Conservation Easements, in the town of Edwards, St. Lawrence County. The Western Lassiter Conservation Easement RMP consists of the 1,336-acre Beers Lot Conservation Easement and the 834-acre Pine Hill Conservation Easement.
The public comment period on the draft RMP is open until November 30th.
In 1989, DEC purchased certain rights on the Beers Lot and Pine Hill tracts as part of a larger acquisition from Lassiter, LLC. Conservation easements on those tracts ensure the properties will remain as privately owned sustainable working forests, protect natural resources, continue private recreational leases, and allow for specific public recreation opportunities.
In 2019, the landowner/lessee exclusive use period included in the terms of the easement expired, creating recreational opportunities for the public. While access to Pine Hill is currently limited, the roads and trails of the Beers Lot easement are open to the public. The draft plan proposes motorized and non-motorized public recreational opportunities.
Motorized opportunities include:
- opening the Main Haul Road to public motor vehicle use;
- designating an ATV route for members of the public who possess a Mobility Access Permit for People with Disabilities; and
- creation of a parking area.
Non-motorized opportunities include camping, hunting, trapping, fishing, and nature observation.
A virtual presentation, copy of the draft RMP, and an online survey to submit comments can be found on the DEC website. DEC is accepting public comments through November 30th, 2022 and comments can be submitted by mail to Peter D’Luhosch, Program Manager, DEC Potsdam Sub-Office, 190 Outer Main St Suite 103, Potsdam, NY 13676, or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org