New York State officials have met Commack School District half way in their response to the lawsuit filed by Marion Carll's heirs for control of the historic farm.
New York State Attorney General and New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Presrvation filed a response to the on July 17. New York State officials call for the heirs' lawsuit to be dismissed as more than 30 years have passed since the creation of the will, and that the state has its own reasons for being interested in the property.
who seek to repossess the historic property, claiming the school district has failed to use the land for educational and public purposes.
Among the those also served with the lawsuit was New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation and the New York State attorney general.
In the state's 7-page response to the lawsuit, state officials argue that Carll's heirs have lost the right to claim the property should revert to them, simply because it is not being used for educational and public purposes. It has been more than 30 years since Carll's will was drafted, and the heirs have never showed interest, argues the state.
New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historical Preservation points out that the to help restore and preserve the property in the 1990s, when BOCES leased the nine-acre historic farm from Commack School District from 1990 to 2000.
On page 3 of their response, state officials mention the BOCES grants resulted in several covenants being placed on the land to make sure the focus stayed on maintaining and preserving the historic qualities of the property.
New York State officials wrote:
New York State's interest in the property is superior to any interest that the plaintiffs might claim in the property; plaintiff's interest, if any is subject to the preservation covenant.
The plaintiffs being Marion Carll's heirs.
While state officials clearly agree with Commack School District that the heirs' lawsuit should be dismissed by the courts, they do not agree on the future of the historic farm.
Commack School officials free of the restrictions in Marion Carll's will, which mandated the land be used for the public and educational purposes.
The district's request to be rid of the restrict use of the land, on page 21 of their response, reads:
Accordingly, the Court should render a judgement pursuant to section 1955 of the Real Property Actions & Proceeding Law discharging the restriction in its entirety and authorizing the District to convey, lease, mortgage or otherwise dispose of the poerpty free of the restriction, and that the purchaser under such disposition shall take free of the restriction, as well.
Meanwhile, state officials repeatedly make clear in their response to the lawsuit that "the property is subject to the preservation convenants and that said the convenants run with the land."
New York State Department of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation does not make any indication that the state would be willing to take over possession and upkeep of the land and its buildings in the future.
Tell us: Do you think this historic farm would be better cared for in the hands of New York State, Commack School District or the Carll heirs? Do you think the judge should enforce the restrictions the property be kept historical and used for educational and public uses, or allow potential development?
Tell us in the comments below.