Saratoga Springs, NY – March 14, 2015 – Sustainable Saratoga, a non-profit organization, has declined an offer from the Saratoga County Chamber of Commerce to participate in their March 16th  meeting that presents new development plans for the Saratoga National Golf Course on Union Avenue in Saratoga Springs.

“We were originally hoping this forum would be a balanced public discussion on the appropriate Comprehensive Plan designations for properties in the City’s greenbelt,” said Harry Moran, Chair of Sustainable Saratoga.  “Now it looks like a marketing event to launch a specific development project which is exactly the opposite of the comprehensive perspective we find appropriate for this level of planning.”

Moran noted that another concern was the forum was being co-sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce which has been advocating vigorously for the proposed Saratoga National’s development and for overturning the City’s longstanding conservation protections for the greenbelt.  The other co-sponsor, the Saratoga Convention and Tourism Bureau, also supports the development plans. “Having the Chamber and the Convention and Tourism Bureau host a forum about the greenbelt is a bit like the fox guarding the hen house,” Moran added.

Sustainable Saratoga does support public discussion on where growth should or should not occur in the community.  Moran added, “The appropriate place to discuss these issues has now moved to the City Council and that is where we will participate in the dialogue.”

Moran also noted, “Concepts and vision make up a Comprehensive Plan.  The plan should not be dictated by one development project proposed by a specific property owner.”

Sustainable Saratoga has been promoting and participating in the City’s review of the Comprehensive Plan since the process started in 2013.  The City Council-appointed Comprehensive Plan Committee worked for 18 months before transmitting its work product to the Council in December 2014. The Council is now in the final stages of preparing the draft plan for a public hearing. Sustainable Saratoga has been urging the Council to move forward purposefully so this process can soon be brought to a close, allowing the community to move ahead with a solid planning roadmap in place.

Contact: Harry Moran, Chair