Executive Council allows sale of camp in Hill
For $3,000 per year in leasing fees, this camp in Hill could be yours. The outhouse and animal shed are in disrepair, the main building has been vandalized and the last stretch of road is not maintained by the town. Photographed on Tuesday, March 20, 2012. (Alexander Cohn/ Monitor Staff)
The state will put out to bid a camp in Hill’s William H. Thomas State Forest, after the Executive Council unanimously approved its sale this week.
William H. Thomas left nearly 1,700 acres and two cabins on the land to the state when he died in 2001. The state initially planned to lease one of the cabins as a seasonal camp and demolish the other, which is too dilapidated to be occupied. But leasing the camp went against the family’s wishes, said Bill Carpenter, administrator of the state Bureau of Land Management.
Now the state has two options: Put the cabin out to bid for someone to buy it and remove it from the forest, or demolish it. Demolition would cost the state money, which means selling it for even a very small price would be worth it, Carpenter said.
“It’s being vandalized, and we have to stop that,” he said. “We either spend big money and demolish the camp and get it removed off the property, or we sell it to somebody willing to pay for the building and move it off themselves and put the camp on their land.”
Preparing to put the camp out to bid was a lengthy process, including gaining approval from the state’s Council on Resources and Development, Long Range Capital Planning and the Executive Council. The state also needed approval to remove or demolish the camps from the Division of Historical Resources.
More than a dozen people reached out to the state when it first thought of leasing the camp. Within the next week, the state will contact them about potentially buying and removing the camp, Carpenter said. He hopes to have the property sold within a month and removed in the spring. If no one wants to buy the camp, it will be demolished along with the second camp.
Although the family did not want the camp to be leased to someone, its members are comfortable with the camp being sold and moved, Carpenter said. The state tries to honor the wishes of those who provide gifts to the state, he said.