Letter to the editor: County moving forward with Fiester condemnation | SummitDaily.com

Letter to the editor: County moving forward with Fiester condemnation

Just when we thought the Summit Board of County Commissioners had decided to give up their efforts to extinguish the Fiester Preserve conservation easement and purchase it for the construction of senior and workforce housing, it seems that Karn Stiegelmeier (District 3) wants to move forward with court proceedings, which continue to cost the protectors of this preserve growing attorney fees.

Extinguishing a preserve (aka open space) is a very serious thing. It is basically eminent domain, which heads us down a very slippery slope. This would establish a negative precedent from here forward in Summit County and beyond.

What every Summit County property owner and taxpayer needs to know is the Board of County Commissioners is the second-largest property owner here behind the U.S. Forest Service. They own over 4,400 properties for which property taxes are not paid. Each time they purchase more property (with our property tax money), those properties are removed from the property tax rolls putting more burden on Summit County property owners and taxpayers. The board continues to use shell companies to purchase more land with our tax dollars. We think this should cease immediately. They own more than enough land.

One would think that a few of these 4,400-plus properties could be used for senior or workforce housing.

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