MILTON — While the Milton Town Board awaits a response from Twin Rivers Council about last week’s extension offer, another interested party has approached the town about Camp Boyhaven.
At the town’s special meeting on Tuesday, Councilman Benny Zlotnick said the council sent him a response earlier this week, which stated, “The council has received the town’s offer for an extension and is currently evaluating all of its options for Camp Boyhaven.
“No decisions have been announced at this time. The council understands the town’s interest in receiving a response to their offer and we will do so as soon as it’s feasible.”
On May 14, the town voted on a resolution to pay up to $20,000 to Twin Rivers Council in exchange for the council to sell Camp Boyhaven to the town within 90 days.
The council is paying approximately $1,000 a month for utilities and insurance costs for the property, which closed last summer.
The resolution includes a permissive referendum, which means that within 30 days of the passage of the resolution, if 5 percent of the voters in the town’s last general election, or 504 people, file a petition with the clerk against it, the town must then withdraw the project or schedule a public vote.
Zlotnick said many members of the Twin Rivers Council are heading to the National Council of the Boy Scouts of America annual meeting, which is scheduled for May 23–25 in Dallas, Texas.
The town has been approached by the New York State Sheriff’s Association, which operates a summer camp near the Finger Lakes on Keuka Lake for children between the ages of 9 and 12 who cannot attend summer camp due to financial reasons.
The association inquired if the town would be interested in an arrangement, Zlotnick said.
Board members John Frolish and Barbara Kerr toured the 300-acre property off Middle Grove Road along the Kayaderosseras Creek with two representatives of the association on Tuesday.
Kerr said the representatives were “quite impressed” with the condition of the buildings at Camp Boyhaven.
“They were very impressed with the property and they appreciate what Boyhaven is,” she said to audience members on Tuesday. “I think it’s a great opportunity for the town and county to help kids in need.”
According to Kerr, every county in the state sends children to the camp, and last year, Saratoga County sent 25 children.
Zlotnick said the association has been running the camp for 40 years.
“We can’t make deals on anything we don’t own,” he said. “We’ll have to wait and see what Twin Rivers says and then we’ll see what we can do.”
Saratoga PLAN is also weighing its options regarding Camp Boyhaven.
The Saratoga County-based conservation organization launched a fundraising effort, which has raised around $120,000 through pledges by private individuals, after an anonymous donor rescinded his $500,000 offer for the project.
Executive Director Maria Trabka said the organization is in the midst of preparing alternative plans to purchase Camp Boyhaven in partnership with other conservation organizations “in the event that the town of Milton does not proceed on its own.”