SPRINGHILL - Land awarded to the province to help lure a prospective new jail to Springhill was done free and clear of any past stipulations, officials for the community are saying.
On online tipster using the Amherst Daily News website, www.amherstdailynew.com
, claimed the land in question once belonged to Latimer Construction on Black River Road and was handed over to the community in 1992 with conditions and felt $100,000 was provided to the community to develop the region into a recreational area.
While there were conditions on the land, no money ever exchanged hands Mayor Allen Dill, Chief Administrative Officer Don Tabor and Director of Leisure Services Pam Adams said in a joint statement to the press.
"If there's $100,000 out there I'd love to know where it is," Adams said.
When the land was awarded to the town in 1992, Tabor said, no money was exchanged but Latimer Construction did condition the town to use the land for recreation purposes. If the land was not used for recreation it was to be handed over to the province at the discretion of the Crown.
The province received a portion of that land recently as an act of good faith by Springhill to entice the province if it decides to build a new jail in Cumberland County.
"Approximately one-third of the land is now Crown property and two-thirds is still in possession of the town," Tabor said.
After receiving the land in 1992 the Town of Springhill leveled some of the area but little development otherwise was ever done. Definition of a recreational area, Adams says, is not limited to just playgrounds and tennis courts.
"It can mean any mode of recreation. It could be a dog-walking park or a green-space. Both fall under recreation," Adams said.
While the province has yet to announce if and when a new jail could be built in Cumberland County, many are assuming the recent land-deal with Springhill signals a done-deal and will see the corrections facility move from neighbouring Amherst to the former mining town. about 20 kilometres away.