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E-M:/ Ray Twp Wetlands and MLC

Enviro-Mich message from "Shelly Bania" <sbania2@hotmail.com>

On Thur. 4/27, Sue Julian inquired about an update on the Ray Twp. Wetlands 
that Consumers Energy owns.

Those involved in the project met with other conservation-minded folks
and formed the Macomb Land Conservancy. The Ray Twp. wetland parcel is
their first land acquisition project. The MLC is still working towards that 
goal and is working (sometimes 16 hours a day) to preserve the parcel.

Recent species inventories/analysis has shown that the Coon Creek on this 
site is in its natural state. It has a sandy bottom, its waters are clear 
and of high quality and it is habitat to species such as the Rainbow Darter.

Plant studies conducted last week found wild ginseng on the parcel.

The MDEQ did initially deny the permit. However, they are prepared
to send out an approval letter for the modified permit EVEN THOUGH
the applicant HAS NOT met their requirements (and requests per the denial 
letter) for an alternative analysis and proof that this project is wetland 
dependent. The possibility of filing an injunction is being
considered. The EPA still needs to approve the modified permit.

Meanwhile, keep in mind that the applicant doesn't even own the 
property.Consumers Energy owns 63 of the 190 acre proposed development.
The MLC is hoping to meet with Consumers Energy decision-makers in early 
May. Consumers Energy Foundation has an environmental history of preserving 
natural areas like this one.

The MLC's current goal is to present a strong case for
preservation and work with Consumers Energy to protect these mature
forested wetlands. Last week, the MLC sent letters to Consumers signed by 
800 individuals who are requesting that the company  work with the MLC to 
preserve this parcel. Some of those who signed are avid golfers, who stated 
that there is no need for another golf course in Macomb County, particularly 
if the project will destroy their natural resources. (Note: the 800 
signatures were collected in only 3 days)

Additionally, we've met with some public officials in Macomb County who are 
very excited about this new conservancy. Representative Bonior's office 
contacted Consumers on behalf of the MLC, as did State Rep.
Sanborn, who is sending a letter to Consumers urging them to work with
the MLC to preserve this parcel.

The MLC has embarked upon its first fundraising/member drive
in order to preserve this parcel. The MLC is confident that if
given a just price and enough time, it could raise the funds necessary to 
purchase the land. Thanks to the generosity of many persons, the tally is 
over $3,000 already and we've just begun.

Thank you for your continued interest.


Shelly Bania
Vice-President, Macomb Land Conservancy

For more info contact us at: 	Macomb Land Conservancy
						PO Box 332, Romeo,MI 48065
						or call Kathleen Bolton at 810.784.5848
						email: bbolton@ees.eesc.com

(The MLC is in the process of becoming a 501 (c)3 organization.
The Oakland Land Conservancy is accepting donations on our behalf while we 
establish our tax-exempt status.)

Enviro-Mich message from Sue Julian <benj@tir.com>

What ever happened with the Consumers Energy wetlands issue in Ray
Township? I know I read the MDEQ wetlands permit was denied but is the
Macomb Land Conservancy able to purchase and preserve it? Another golf
course eating up good farmland and choking out wetland isn't good land use
planning for fast-developing Macomb.
* Sue Julian                                                    *
* Michigan Drain Code Coalition                                 *
* Phone: (248) 634-3513                                         *
* P.O. Box 304                                                  *
* Holly, MI 48442                                               *
* email: benj@tir.com                                           *
* MDCC Homepage: http://members.tripod.com/Michigan_Drain_Code/ *

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