Controversial land sale in Geneva subject to another council vote on Dec. 7

At first it seemed like the lakefront sale in Geneva would go through without a hitch. However, a technicality in the way the resolution was put forward could be enough to derail the plan, which would have sold the 7-acre parcel along Route 5&20 to Bunnell Associates.

The concept was to construct vacation, or temporary rental units at the site. In legal terms the resolution, which originally passed with the necessary “supermajority” — was not specific enough.

Geneva City Manager Matt Horn said that defining the specific type of units to be built on the property were crucial to making the deal legal. Some residents of Geneva who oppose the deal believe that the process lacked transparency.

Opinion on whether the process was “transparent” has been split. During last month’s FingerLakes1.com Election Night Live, which aired on November 8th, former councilwoman Jackie Augustine expressed her concerns with the process and sale.

Specifically, Augustine voiced concerns over a public hearing that didn’t see the turnout that the issue warranted. Another concern raised by Augustine had to do with denying public access to the lake.

The Finger Lakes Times reported on Sunday that two councilmembers who voted for the original resolution may be changing that vote the second time around. Fourth Ward Councilor Ken Camera and At-Large Councilor Mark Gramling both told the Times that they would not support the resolution the second time around.

Both have expressed interest in seeing the process of selling that 7-acre plot start over.

Supporters of the land sale believe that this is an opportunity for Geneva to boost local tourism, unload an environmentally challenged piece of land, and save the City money in the long-term.

If the process is “reset” then it will be subject to another public hearing, which Geneva Mayor Ron Alcock said was not necessary. He expressed his sentiment that the city had already moved through the process legally, which included a public hearing.

The modified resolution will be voted on at December’s regularly scheduled meeting.

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