I just finished reading an account of Thursday's meeting in the Caledonia Record. A discussion came up where the developer is trying to remove a condition of the permit with the county, to keep the hiking trails to Table Rock open. Developer is concerned about liability. The county folks pushed back hard against this and pointed out they really have no liability concerns due to the public access liability laws that have been put in place over the years.
Early on in this project I had expressed some concerns to the then commissioner of DRED, that NH State Parks needed to identify and protect aspects of public recreation from the adjacent Dixville Notch State Park, as the Balsam planning moved forward. My supervisor and I were shortly thereafter invited into a meeting where we were handed all sorts of documents and maps marked "Confidential". I knew prior to this meeting that the hiking trails weaved in and out of the state and Balsams property boundaries, and actually had concerns in the past that there was a lot of recreational activity that was the result of good old fashioned handshake cooperation between the landowners, and no documented legal agreements.
When the "Confidential" maps came out in the meeting, my boss and I were quite shocked to discover that some of the entrance roadways into the parking areas were not even on state land, and in fact one of the areas we mowed and had a large "Dixville Notch" Gallows type sign on, was also on Balsams land. Go figure!
So the county is trying to do the right thing as far as public access to the traditional hiking trails. I would say that the developer might think this is not a big deal, but I would think that is a grave mistake. I don't think at this point the public in the North Country is all that warm anymore on this project, it's been a long time now, we found other jobs. Now you want to take away our beloved hiking trail?