Please send comments on the Raystown Lake Draft Master Plan (pages 8-125, 126).
To send comments, go to www.nab.usace.army.mil/raystown-master-plan-revision/ and scroll to the bottom of the first page. Fill in the form or email the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
The form will ask you to "select the section of the draft Plan your comment refers to." Choose "Summary of Recommendations."
Please let the Army Corps know that you support their decision, which is based on sound science versus a desire for economic gain. Comment deadline is Dec. 7, 2019.
Use the following excerpts from the Plan as talking points to support the draft Master Plan:
The draft plan states that, "The proportion of public comments received specifically opposing the proposal to develop and/or reclassify the Hawn’s Bridge area was significant. This indicates that expressed public desires at this time do not support the reclassification to High Density Recreation." Justification for this decision was based on factors that changing the area to “high density recreation” would potentially negatively affect the following:
- Proximity to Bat Conservation Area
- Impact on fisheries
- Proximity to Shale Barren area
- Impact on hunting
- Impact on timber resources or tree cover
- Topographic impacts to infrastructure construction
The USACE applied objectives in the classification analysis with the following results:
- The proposal would support the objective to identify and evaluate increased opportunities to provide and implement education and outreach on the missions of the RLP.
- It would not preserve the unique scenic beauty and aesthetics of the project by minimizing development and maintaining the undisturbed natural buffer between the shoreline and all future development.
- It would not achieve recreation goals in conjunction with the USACE Recreation Strategic Plan and the Pennsylvania SCORP.
- It would not actively manage and conserve fish, wildlife, and special status species or enhance biodiversity.
- In addition, it would not support goals to manage invasive species, promote forest health, or prevent erosion and sedimentation.
There is already pushback from the developer who wants to turn Hawn’s Bridge area into a resort. Janet Chambers, spokesperson for the proposed resort, is quoted in a recent issue of the Huntingdon Daily News. Chambers maintains that the Corps ignored the WIIN Act, which instructed the Corps to increase recreation areas. She also is quoted as stating that any conflicting issues can be "worked out."