Though the official minutes of the May meeting are not available as of this date, the following are excerpts from a draft memo containing comments and recommendations to James Connelly dated May 4, 2006.
“Staff believe the Agency’s identification of the fire tower as a non-conforming use is the Canoe Area has been consistent since the first adopted Master Plan in 1972 and through two subsequent revisions…”
“Staff recognize that there has been a growing, recent interest in maintaining the fire towers for their recreation and cultural resource values.”
“Staff believe that due to its closure in 1990 it is clear the tower no longer serves any essential purpose as defined by current Master Plan guidelines and criteria. Consequently, staff recommend that any action contained in the proposed comprehensive fire tower plan concerning the future of the Saint Regis Fire Tower should be incorporated in a UMP amendment for the review by the Agency. Staff further recommend that if no UMP amendment is approved, then the Saint Regis Fire Tower should be removed within three years of approval of this unit plan since it will continue to be a non-conforming structure in the Canoe Area. Staff also recognize the other alternatives of the comprehensive study could include either relocation (of the tower) or a revision to the Master Plan.”
“Staff believe the proposal may be found to be consistent with the guidelines and criteria of the Master Plan if the language can be revised to include the concern for the timing of removal of non-conforming structures as recommended above.”