It’s unfortunate that the golf course proposal for Owls Head “continues to be delayed by this lawsuit which deprives Eastern Shore residents of what could be as many as 200 badly needed local jobs, during the COVID-19 pandemic,” Lighthouse Links said in a statement released to media Thursday.
… The Crown properties, according to the provincial documents submitted to the court in November, include a variety of coastal barrens and wetlands, exceptional bedrock-ridged topography and are home to the piping plover and the barn swallow, two species at risk.
The properties were removed from the protected list in March 2019 without public notification or consultation.
Public servants have been working with the prospective buyer, Lighthouse Links Development Corporation, to facilitate the sale of Owls Head Park Reserve
Update: In November 2019, Lands and Forestry had to file more documents in the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia, in response to the applicant’s request for a judicial review. As a result, we learned that the price for this unique coastal ecosystem had been assessed at $306/acre.
This means that 704 acres would only cost the developer $216,000, far below the asking price of nearby parcels. The appraiser (Turner and Drake) had determined the price based on the land being undevelopable, yet Lighthouse Links does plan to develop it.
Included in the Freedom of Information (FOIPOP) package are the signed Letter of Offer for the sale of Owls Head Park Reserve, a Valuation Report, and emails between members of the government staff and Gilbert’s representatives.
But in an interview Thursday, Environment Minister Gordon Wilson said that even if the land is sold, no development would proceed before first going through the environmental assessment process, which includes opportunities for public comment.