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Tax Delinquent Restricts Parking Near Public Boat Ramp

Town officials are looking into whether Carnegie Abbey's parking signs violate a previous agreement.

Members of the Portsmouth Town Council are looking into parking restriction signs recently posted at the end of Willow Lane near the public boat ramp. 

About five to six signs are posted in a parking lot not far from the public boat ramp at the end of Willow Lane. Two of the signs can be seen in the photo above. 

The signs state the area is "private property" and parking is allowed for "members only." 

Councilor Judi Staven previously said a prior agreement with Carnegie Abbey called for public parking at this location.

One small sign, located at the entrance to Elliot Street, points to "additional boat ramp parking." The street leads to an unpaved, dirt lot. 

The Carnegie Tower Development Co. Inc. of King of Prussia, PA, has been criticized by council members for owing the town of Portsmouth more than $1.9 million in late property taxes. This tax has not been paid to date, according to Finance Director David Faucher. 

What do you think about these signs? Should this parking lot be open to the public? Tell us your thoughts in the comment section and poll below. 

the1 February 20, 2012 at 05:29 PM
Yes, I would say Carnegie has some nerve putting up signs like this when (1) there was an agreement put in place with the town and (2) THEY OWE THE TOWN $2 MILLION DOLLARS!!!!!!!!!!!
2therightinri February 20, 2012 at 05:48 PM
What was understood and stipulated to at the time by the developer, CRMC, DEM, and the Town...was that... this was a public right of way and the developer involved could improve it but not limit the publics use or access to it. These signs need to be removed.
Brian St. Onge February 20, 2012 at 06:04 PM
The bigger question is why hasn't the city taking strong action to collect the back taxes. After all, that unpaid revenue is affecting every property owner's tax bill.
Bear401 February 20, 2012 at 06:16 PM
The town should do to them like they would do to anyone else and that is, if they haven't already, to put a lien on the property for those unpaid taxes and the accrued interest on it. If the town officials don't do that then the citizens of Porstmouth should be asking why it hasn't been done and consider tho possibility that those officials have been corrupted by the money that exists in Carnegie
Interested Observer February 20, 2012 at 07:27 PM
There are no restrictions. I know of many people from Portsmouth and surrounding towns that use the ramp without issues. This is a wild goose chase. As far as the taxes they will either be paid or the property will go to a tax sale just like every other deliquent property. But don't let that get in the way of a good conspiracy!!
Robert E February 20, 2012 at 08:05 PM
Take the land for back taxes solves the problem.
2therightinri February 20, 2012 at 08:46 PM
Those signs are there to inhibit use by the uninformed. The many people of Portsmouth and surrounding towns that use the ramp and parking are Informed of their right to use the facility and do so. It seems to me that the signs...would likely cause a would be user unaware of it's public status...to beleive it was controlled by Carnegie... and therefore be denied what rightfully belongs them and to all of us.
klb February 20, 2012 at 09:06 PM
This needs to be resolved. How dare them put up signs when they owe all of portsmouth citizens "tax $$" I would also like to add, our ramps should be accessible to Portsmouth residents only. all our ramps are being used and abused by out of state boaters. Our tax dollars have to pay for clean-up and restoration! so do like other towns and cities and charge for season stickers.
Jennifer February 20, 2012 at 10:04 PM
So... they can afford to put up the pretty, well constructed signs but not pay their taxes...
Robert E February 21, 2012 at 01:28 AM
Jennnifer They can afford to pay their taxes they just choose not to.
getreal February 21, 2012 at 06:05 AM
They also have most contractors working on Carnegie property park in this same lot so it can be filled up and offer few spaces to inhibit use by the public.... Does Carnegie have special permission to operate golf carts on town roads ???? Is this legal or not ?
Forever February 21, 2012 at 12:31 PM
This land should have never been given to Carnegie in the first place, take down the signs and put up public are welcome signs, problem solved..
sonofportsmouth February 21, 2012 at 05:14 PM
moreover,this development,especially the golf course portion was built on a historical revolutionary battlefield ,which was farmed since 1778.only the dollar pushed this eyesore on our west side through.now there's no dollar!
NKGOP Watch March 31, 2012 at 05:42 AM
WOW, Sandy please stay on this...
pinta1 October 25, 2012 at 10:01 AM
Willow lane was 60 feet wide. If you drive down where the Boat house is you will notice that they have narrowed the road onto STATE PROPERTY. So park on the GRASS. it's State Property. I don't care if they put sprinkler systems in there. They should never have been allowed to do that in the first place. Where was our zoning board? On O'Neil's payroll that's where. Where were our elected officials? Having lunch at the Carnegie Club House FOR FREE. This is dirty politics at it's best.Or should I say worse. I'll bet payoffs were involved.
J. Lane McMahon October 25, 2012 at 02:35 PM
I would have to dispute the claim that Willow Lane was 60 feet wide. A simple look at Google Earth, (which has a overhead look going back to 1995, Pre-O'neil) clearly show that it was never wider than 40 feet and is the same now. Even East Main, with a generous placement of sidewalks is only 47 feet.
pinta1 October 27, 2012 at 03:05 AM
Willow lane is an industrial road; on the section east of the railroad tracks measure across from pole to pole and you will find about 60 feet of public property. Now look west across the tracks and you will clearly see the road has been narrowed. If you can not see this I will meet you down there with a tape measure.

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