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Bedminster preserves 18 acres


Bedminster Township has approved the addition of another 17.72 acres to its preserved land, while awaiting finalizing of an agreement with owners of another 36 acres. The action was taken by the board of supervisors at its Feb. 14 meeting.

In 2022, total preserved land in the township passed 7,700 acres, which is among the largest sums among county municipalities.

The approval of agreement for the sale and purchase of an Agricultural Conservation Easement for the Beers property on Log Cabin Road followed approval of a resolution authorizing the township’s portion of the cost at $8,860, or about 4% of the total cost. The state is to contribute $196,000, and the county about $17,000, including closing costs.

Approval of a tentative additional Conservation Easement Agreement, for an additional 36-acre property, is awaiting final formal approval by the owners.

In his budget presentation for 2024 last fall, Township Manager Rich Schilling reported that the open space fund for the township’s portion of preservation easements was “very strong, fully funded, and (with) no debt.”

In 2014, supervisors opted to refinance the township’s 2009 electoral debt for open space acquisition, to generate savings of over $277,000 during the life of the loan, and then paid off the loan altogether at the end of 2020.

Also at the Feb. 14 board of supervisors meeting, police Chief Matt Phelan continued his reporting on the department’s further development of its innovative community policing program. In one item, he noted a recent success with an identity theft incident, where an officer was able to assist the victim with gaining return of the stolen funds to their bank account.

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