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City, Water District, Nordic extend purchase agreement fourth time

By Kendra Caruso | Apr 27, 2021
Source: File photo The Belfast Water District building.

Belfast — City Council, the Belfast Water District Board of Trustees and Nordic Aquafarms extended their purchase option agreement April 21. Nordic has proposed to build a land-based fish farm next to the Little River using land currently owned by the Water District. The two municipal entities also approved a purchase agreement for a portion of the Crocker Road property owned by the city.

If Nordic and the city decide to proceed with buying the Water District’s property, the Water District will be able to purchase a piece of property owned by the city on Crocker Road to use as its new location. Had the three entities not agreed to extend the purchase option agreement, it would have expired April 30, according to City Attorney Bill Kelly. Since Jan. 30, 2018, the purchase agreement has been extended four times.

The three previous extensions were granted to give Nordic time to get state and local permit approval, according to the fourth amendment. The latest extension was allowed so Nordic can continue to seek unappealable governmental approval.

The document says the purchase agreement and other agreements with the Water District would have a “direct financial benefit, significant waterfront public property and public access and broader economic development benefits stemming from the project.”

Kelly said the city has entered into similar long-term purchase option agreements in the past with Front Street Shipyard, and multiple contract rezoning projects that resulted in public and private shared interests, like the one with Paul Naron to get an easement for the Harbor Walk, and many others.

The agreement was extended to July 1, 2022.

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