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Alpine Rose Resorts gets an extension from Eldred Township

Published May 10. 2010 05:00PM

Richard Muller, property owner of the proposed Alpine Rose Resorts, Inc. motor sport track along Upper Smith Gap Road in Kunkletown, and his attorney, Emil Kantra, attended the April 21 meeting of the Eldred Township supervisors. On behalf of Muller, Kantra asked for a Protection Period extension for one year beyond the end of both litigation and the end of all appeals expiring.

The board voted to table the request after Michael Kaspszyk, Eldred's solicitor, suggested, as a matter of due process, that Blue Mountain Preservation Association (BMPA) be notified so they could present opinion and fact relevant to the request.

Muller, his attorney, representatives of the BMPA, including its president, Frank O'Donnell, and their attorney, Kenneth Kristl were present at the May 5 meeting.

Kantra stated that Muller has not been able to move forward because of the appeals that have been filed by BMPA.

Muller had been granted conditional approval of the final land development plan in November 2002. One of the those conditions was that he would not be able to begin construction until all his permits were in hand.

BMPA and/or the Appalachian Trail Council filed multiple appeals to both the Court of Common Pleas of Monroe County and the Commonwealth Court to prevent Muller from beginning that construction.

Muller did have all the necessary permits had one time or another, but because of the appeals, they were struck down and remanded. He's had to revise and resubmit his permit application to DEP and PennDOT.

Currently there are two appeals against him. One is for the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit with the State Environmental Hearing Board. It is scheduled to be brought to trial before Judge Krancer during the week of June 28, 2010.

The other appeal is because PennDOT changed its regulations and now he has to submit a new application for a new permit.

Attorney Kristl for BMPA said that the BMPA believes that Alpine Rose's five-year time period protecting approval of its plan against changes to the zoning, subdivision or other governing ordinances has been running since August 2005 and should be up by August 2010 and is against the board voting for the one year protection period extension beyond the end of both litigation and the end of all appeals expiring.

Supervisor Gretchen Gannon-Pettit suggested waiting for the decision from Judge Krancer in June before voting on the extension.

Instead, Supervisor Sharon Solt made a motion to grant the extension. All three supervisors, Clair Borger, Solt and Gannon-Pettit voted to approve the extension.

Judy Rush asked the supervisors if Alpine Rose satisfied all the other conditions and Kaspszyk said "No" because he thinks they're waiting to have this appeal resolved. Rush wondered why because she thinks it show their lack of interest.

Marion O'Donnell, also a member of BMPA said she heard Muller was planning to build a tower with a restaurant to which Kaspszyk replied that he couldn't build anything that's inconsistent with the plan.

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