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home : current news : current news June 29, 2016

7/2/2013 1:57:00 PM
Development bill stalls in legislature
By Jim Cornelius
News Editor

A bill that would have allowed for expanded development of the Cyrus family properties in the area of Aspen Lakes will not move forward in this legislative session.

HB 3536 legislation would allow for the creation of a "Heritage Guest Ranch" on Cyrus-owned land, with up to 480 residential units, overnight lodging facilities such as cabins, condominiums and townhouses, recreation facilities and a motorcoach resort facility with up to 100 spaces.

It would also allow development of an additional golf course.

The bill calls for development "in conjunction with a transfer of development opportunity" from the proposed Metolian resort in the Metolius Basin. Transfer Development Opportunities (TDOs) were established in 2009 when the legislature effectively disallowed the Camp Sherman-area development under a provision declaring the Metolius Basin an Area of Critical State Concern. The TDOs allow the developers to use their rights elsewhere under specific restrictions.

Critics opposed the bill as an "end run" around the land-use process and as an inappropriate use of the TDOs.

Rep. John Huffman (R - The Dalles) introduced it in the Oregon House of Representatives on Wednesday, May 29.

In an email, Huffman said that he had been in communication with Richard Whitman from the Governor's office.

"Richard feels that using the Metolius TDOs (Transfer Development Opportunities from the 2009 legislation that established an Area of Critical Statewide Concern of the 306,000 acre Metolius Basin area) shows promise but we probably don't have time to get everybody to a consensus this session with time so short.

"I agreed to work on the Cyrus Development Project during the interim with support from the Governor's office to try to develop a project for the 2014 legislative session that will use the legislatively adopted TDOs from the 2009 Metolian Development Project."

Huffman further stated, "I agreed that the work group should include Deschutes County, affected state agencies representatives, 1000 Friends of Oregon and a couple of other organization representatives that will make every attempt to get to a consensus on the use of the Metolius TDOs on the Cyrus Property."

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