Reasons why Wilton should contribute to Frye Farm land easement

To the Editor:

When I go shopping, I like to take a list. It keeps me focused and I don’t buy stuff I don’t need.

So, when I heard the town of Wilton had an opportunity to buy into protecting a big piece of open land, I started making a list of what I would want that purchase to include.

A conservation easement doesn’t mean you get the deed to that land, but in this case, the town would get nearly all the benefits of ownership and none of the chores like mowing the fields, insurance, maintenance, stewardship, and so forth.

So my list just included those things in an easement on 160 acres of open land, that would benefit the town of Wilton.

? 88 acres of federally designated important farmland soils. CHECK.

? 800 feet along the Souhegan River (a designated river under NHRSA 483) – I hear there is actually salmon in it. CHECK.

? Right of way and access for the Winter Wanders Snowmobile Club for Corridor 13 of the New Hampshire snowmobile system. CHECK.

? Protection of four out of seven of Wilton’s water well heads, plus protection for aquifers and surface waters CHECK.

? Town of Wilton’s National Resource Inventory ranks these parcels as highest ranking in Wilton. CHECK.

Preservation of historic farmland held by one Wilton family for seven generations. CHECK.

? Trails for public hiking and picnicking. (Wilton likes trails.) CHECK.

? Opportunities for students and children for agricultural, forest and other educational experiences. CHECK.

? Promotion of local agriculture in furtherance of increased regional interest. CHECK.

? Protecting these two parcels, when added to an existing protected 80-acre parcel would bring the total of high ranking land protected to 240 acres. CHECK.

? Wilton’s Master Plan, trail plans and Natural Resource Inventory all recommend protection of this kind of valuable farmland. CHECK.

? Unlike many municipal purchases, this would be a one time only purchase – with no maintenance expenses, no replacement costs in a few years, and we won’t have to buy it again . CHECK.

? Taxes will continue to be paid to town of Wilton. CHECK.

? All of these rights, activities and interests will be protected forever by an easement deed recorded at Hillsborough Registry of Deeds. CHECK.

? And to top it off it is the best view for miles around with parking nearby. CHECK.

Price: $1,635,000 wow, but wait, Wilton only has to contribute $80,000.

Just this once. Less than 5 percent of that total, or $50 per person. This time only.

This wonderful land will never depreciate; it will only become more valuable every year into the future as a continuing amenity and asset for the people of Wilton.