Lake Texoma

Because Life is Better at the Lake

Is the State Lands Commission engaged in fraud?

by
The Lake Texoma Messenger
I began investigating the privatization of Lake Texoma State Park just over five years ago. I founded the Friends of Lake Texoma State Park and we got the Corps of Engineers to require a full EIS on the additional 1,022 acres of federal land which the Tourism Department is attempting to broker on behalf of Pointe Vista Development. WE raise the question to the Governor and Tourism Secretary Snodgrass: How do you plan on effecting the transfer of these park lands since you abandoned the federal Environmental Impact Statement in late 2011 without notifying either the press or the public stakeholders?




Over eight months have passed since Governor Fallin announced, "Settlement Reached in Stalled Lake Texoma Development." (9/16/2015) Her announcement was premature at best. It was definitely misleading and untrue.


Pointe Vista said they spent $560K on their 2009 federal Environmental Impact Statement on the "Area C" federal land sale. This "EIS" would have studied their entire 3,000 acre mega-development for the first time.


They quietly abandoned the EIS in late 2011. They failed to notify the public. The Corps of Engineers only acknowledged this when Pointe Vista accused them of "dragging their feet" on the study. Pointe Vista refused to fully fund the federal study. What did they have to fear? Was their project economically and environmentally unfeasible? Were they too afraid to find out? It sure looks like it.


The land commission spent over $250K preparing to sue Pointe Vista for Breach of Contract. Their apparent intent was to mediate this settlement agreement. They voted to give up our park land, and release Pointe Vista from their development contract. None of their court filings sought this "solution." Pointe Vista never claimed that they wanted out of their contract.


Wherever the public's "Right to Know" is concerned, the State of Oklahoma has thwarted that. Pointe Vista's environmental study was abandoned. The state's lawsuit to take back Lake Texoma State Park land was abandoned.


Why is the state land commission afraid to prosecute their Breach of Contract case against Pointe Vista? Were they afraid that it would expose years of official misconduct by state officials? Were they afraid that THEY would be implicated if they proceeded with a court trial?


Governor Fallin and the Commissioners of the Land Office need to explain why they are refusing to prosecute this case against Pointe Vista. Their bizarre settlement agreement is still not finalized. Nor has it been submitted to the OK County Court for approval.


The public paid for this prosecution. If it was used as a pretext to mediate an illegal settlement, then Governor Fallin and the Land Commission have engaged in fraud. Is this what they have done, while pretending to defend the public interest?




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