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State Parks and Recreation Commission will meet Nov. 19-20 in Corvallis

Nov. 5. 2013

Corvallis OR - The Oregon State Parks and Recreation Commission will hold its fifth and final meeting of the year on November 19-20 at two locations in Corvallis.

On November 19, Commissioners will visit historic sites in the downtown area before convening at the Hilton Garden Inn, 2500 SW Western Blvd. in Corvallis, at 1 p.m. for a workshop on the Oregon Scenic Waterways program. An executive session will follow at 3 p.m. to discuss acquisition priorities and legal issues. Executive sessions are closed to the public.

On November 20, the Commission will convene its regular business meeting at 8:30 a.m. at OSU's CH2M Hill Alumni Center, 725 SW 26th St. in Corvallis. This business meeting is open to the public and includes time for comment on matters not already on the agenda. During the meeting, department staff will ask the Commission to vote on a proposed land exchange affecting part of the Bandon State Natural Area near the town of Bandon (located 25 miles south of Coos Bay) and several other properties, both on the coast and in Grant County in eastern Oregon.

Bandon State Natural Area is an 878-acre property composed of dunes and seasonal wetlands. Under the proposal, 280 acres of the natural area closest to Highway 101 would be traded to Bandon Biota, a corporation owned by golf course developer Mike Keiser. In exchange, Bandon Biota would transfer 208 acres in the Bandon area into the state park system, pay as much as $2.95 million to help purchase two other properties--10 acres of oceanfront property in Lincoln County known as Whale Cove, and part of a 6,300-acre property in Grant County for use as a future state park--and pay at least $300,000 for gorse control on nearby state park properties.

If the Commission votes in favor of the proposal, it will empower the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) director to order appraisals and finalize terms with all the involved parties. People who wish to comment on the proposal can do so in person at the Commission meeting, where speaking time is limited to three minutes per person, or by writing to: OPRD, Attn: Bandon Proposal, 725 Summer Street Suite C, Salem OR 97301. Comments may also be sent by email to OPRD.publiccomment@state.or.us . Comments must be received by noon on November 18.

The full meeting agenda will be available online beginning November 7. Additional information related to the Bandon Exchange proposal, including public comments received to date, is posted here.

People who plan to present testimony are requested to provide 12 copies of their statement to assistant Vanessa Demoe at vanessa.demoe@state.or.us for distribution to the Commissioners before the meeting. Those needing special accommodations to attend should contact OPRD at 503-986-0719 to make arrangements at least three days in advance. The Nov. 20 business meeting is on the Oregon State University campus. Visitor parking is available in the parking lot across from LaSells Stewart Center and in the parking garage north of the Alumni Center. Visitor parking permits cost $7 and are available at kiosks in the parking areas.

The Oregon State Parks and Recreation Commission is a citizen oversight body that promotes outdoor recreation and heritage by establishing policies, adopting rules, and setting the budget for the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department. The seven members are appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Oregon Senate. They serve four-year terms and meet several times a year at locations across the state. Additional information, including minutes from previous Commission meetings, is available online.

Contact: Chris Havel, Director's Office,
Desk: 503-986-0722  //  Cell: 503-931-2590