Opponents Wage Battle to Stop Powder Ridge Sale

Calling the agreement with Brownstone 'a bad deal for taxpayers,' a group of residents spent Tuesday handing out literature to primary voters leaving the Community Center.


Beverly and Donald Smith want to stop the town from selling Powder Ridge.

The couple spent part of Tuesday morning handing out literature to residents visiting the Middlefield Community Center to vote in Tuesday's primary.

"This is a very bad deal for the Town of Middlefield," said Beverly. "We want to see something definitely go to Powder Ridge. Just not this deal. We're going to be taking it on the chin."

Voters will head back to the polls on Thursday, when the town holds a referendum to ask voters if they approve of a $700,000 deal between Sean Hayes of Brownstone and the town.

Beverly, who was born and raised in Middlefield, said her father was the first person to survey the land. "He surveyed it on snowshoes," she said.

"We're not politically motivated at all," said Donald Smith. "This is a bad cash deal, extremely bad for Middlefield."

A paper handed out by the couple cited 12 reasons why the deal between Hayes and the town was a "bad deal" for taxpayers.

"Vote No August 16," the paper reads. "No reason to hurry. A better deal is out there."

Kathy Lowry August 16, 2012 at 02:41 AM
If Alpine walked and they were buying for $1M with a promise of putting two million into the property how can this be worth $5M. Someone's needs to go back and take a business and economics class. We have a real business with audited financials ready and willing to proceed, it is time to sell the albatross and gain a business.
Scott Wheeler August 16, 2012 at 03:14 AM
There are no "other buyers" period! The people that continue to use this statement had the perfect platform the other day to bring them into the fold and there was nothing. The land without building rights, the minority does indeed love this fact, is worth pennies on the dollar and that is a fact. Taxes WILL go down, that is a fact. Middlefield businesses WILL profit from this, that is a FACT. Vote yes people.
Michael Hayes August 16, 2012 at 03:25 AM
I spoke to finance director Joe Geruch this week to ask whether any other interested parties had come forward since Alpine pulled out of the deal. There are 3. A Canadian group led by Rick Sabatino, who said he would only buy the property if he was allowed to build time shares. He did not present a business plan before an imposed deadline. The second person is Sean Hayes. A third group, a national camping outfit, expressed some interest in the property but did not meet the town's criteria for providing skiing.
Edward Bailey August 16, 2012 at 05:40 AM
I can add that there was interest from a vineyard/winery buisness but it also was not interested in meeting the Town's skiing requirements. I had to laugh at one comment I have seen that said the Town was doing pretty good because it had one buyer per year for the past four years! I suppose we should churn and burn buyers forever! STOP this nonsense; please get out and vote YES! Vote yes for skiing! Vote yes for Middlefield!
sue August 16, 2012 at 02:26 PM
Bev, I've known you all my life and I am proud of you and Don, I totally agree with you, In fact one evening when I went to a Conservation Commission meeting a gentleman ,who was interested in buying Powder Ridge, was waiting for the Board of Selectmen to come in, he had not been notified that the meeting was canceled , so there are interested people out there.


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