NORWALK, Conn. -- The Norwalk Land Trust recently elected John Moeling to fill an unexpired term as president and also voted to terminate a contract that would have allowed the nonprofit to acquire a half-acre property in Rowayton as a public bird and nature sanctuary.
The decision to abandon the contract for the property at 2 Nearwater Road on the Farm Creek peninsula came after the organization realized the contract could not be enforced, Moeling said in a press release.
“During the past three weeks, as the campaign to keep the property as open space continued, the land trust received threats of law suits and warnings of punitive action if we refused to agree to a cancellation of the contract,” Moeling said.
The land trust now will seek to recoup a down payment to property owner Bruce Beinfield, and return public contributions made to fund the acquisition of the property.
“We are certainly grateful to the many volunteers who have supported the Farm Creek Preserve in the past years,” Moeling said.
In June, most of the Pine Point Association members voted against the plan to create a nature preserve, citing concerns that it would generate problematic traffic in a private neighborhood.
Moeling succeeds Kathy Siever as president for the remainder of her term extending through 2014 until the annual meeting in January 2015. He joined the land-trust board in 2009 after retiring as president of Scientific American Inc., a New York-based magazine publisher. He lives in South Norwalk.
The decision to elect Moeling and to stop pursuing the property contract came at a board of directors meeting at the historic stone barn on the Farm Creek Preserve.