In response to interest in the stream that runs under the house and through the middle of the Koepp

/Place property: Final Site Plan Review for the project of moving our old house onto the property (and over the stream) at 327 Main Street was held during the November 8, 2006 Aurora Planning Board meeting. The plan being reviewed for approval showed the stream being diverted in a 24” pipe to the south, around the Koepp/Place house, remaining underground, and not coming on to the Holland property until it reconnected with the existing pipe, behind Koepp’s house, to cross the Holland lakeshore property and empty in to the lake. There is an audio recording of this entire meeting. At 24:00, on the recording, CJ Koepp says “I am a person of integrity.” At 29:20, on the recording, CJ Koepp was asked by the Planning Board about the culvert. In regard to the stream diversion, Koepp’s exact words were: “We filled out an application for DOT. And then they said they have no jurisdiction because it’s all on private property. So then we said we still want to know the best how do I say the best solution so they said they would continue to work with us but they said that our plan for now is fine and that you know we’ll see.” The Aurora Village Planning Board never sought confirmation that the DOT had approved Koepp’s plan for diverting the stream. Based on Koepp’s misleading assertion, the Planning Board gave final approval to the project to move the house on top of the stream.

In fact, what was presented as a Final Site Plan by Koepp was not final at all, particularly in regards to the plans for the underground stream. The Planning Board asked Koepp to supply the Code Enforcement Officer with certain information. In this fax to Doug Staley there is no approval from the DOT, only an alleged “ok” regarding a temporary diversion. Yet at the Final Site Plan Approval meeting she said nothing to the Planning Board about temporary diversions or easements from the Hollands. Here is the letter from the DOT that this fax is referring to, it was written the day before the Final Site Plan meeting of November 8, 2006. It makes no mention of going after the neighbor’s property, nor does it give any form of approval, temporary or permanent. The wording of this letter makes it clear that there is no final plan or design. Yet Staley made no objection. Immediately following the Planning Board meeting, I contacted the DOT to confirm that they were “fine” with the plan. Brent Woodhouse, of the DOT, said in emails to me that there was no “approved design” in place – and that there was no design for the culvert at all. Because the DOT contradicted what Koepp told the Planning Board I repeatedly and urgently attempted to draw this to the attention of Mayor Gunderson, the Planning Board, and the Code Enforcement Officer, Doug Staley. Although

Koepp/Place had received Final Site Plan approval, there was no Final Site Plan. Despite my efforts I was ignored by these people. As the result of the Koepp/Place excavation work on the property, the pipe that carries the stream under the house burst, on November 16, 2006, causing 450 feet of our lake front property to flood. Even then I could not get the attention of Mayor Gunderson or the Code Enforcement Officer, Doug Staley. They both adamantly and angrily refused to look at the broken pipe and the flooding. It was bizarre - to say the least. The house was then moved on top of the stream. On Friday afternoon, March 30, 2007, a man introducing himself as NYSDOT Resident Engineer Chris Covert, showed up without notice at my home with some new information regarding the still unresolved situation of the underground stream on the property at 327 Main Street. Mr. Covert explained to me that the underground stream at 327 Main Street would be converted to an open ditch instead of an underground pipe. He showed me a drawing and described the concrete lined ditch. He explained how this proposed change would affect our property – it would run on our property line for 70 feet and empty into the lake, at a new site, right next to our dock, about 30 feet south of where it currently enters the lake. He said that we would “share the burden” with Koepp and Place. Mr. Covert also told me that we could build a bridge over the planned ditch to connect our lakeshore. We vehemently objected to this plan by the DOT. Our letter of March 22, 2007, to Mr. Covert, can be read here :

About a year later, Koepp and Place submitted a letter regarding this proposed ditch to the Village Board. This letter places blame on me for DOT inaction on the project. Their letter can be read here: Because of the inaccurate content of the Koepp/Place letter, I made several phone calls to the DOT and I followed up with a letter to the DOT on February 26, 2008, requesting clarification and full disclosure regarding the project. My letter can be read here: At this time I had several phone conversations with Chris Covert regarding the project. He contradicted the claims of the Koepp/Place letter. On March 6, I wrote a letter to the Village Board regarding what Chris Covert told me about this matter. This letter can be read here: Then on March 12, 2008, I received a letter from Chris Covert stating in regards to the plan by Koepp/Place: “Their proposed replacement and rerouting of the portion running across their property was found to be inadequate.” This letter can be read here: It appears that the DOT does in fact have some say over what Koepp and Place do with the culvert. In the fall of 2008, because this situation was still unresolved, our lawyer arranged a meeting with Chris Covert. We discussed the history and the possible options of the stream relocation. A letter from our lawyer, summarizing what we were told by Covert at that meeting, was sent to Mayor Gunderson on October 28, 2008. This letter can be read here: At that meeting, Covert also told us that the current plan no longer included a ditch, that the stream would be channeled through an underground pipe, with a new entrance to the lake. But that, likely, it would still run along more than 70 feet of our property, requiring a seized easement from our property. As of today, March 26, 2009, that is where the project stands. Over the past week the DOT has been in Aurora surveying our property, and the Koepp/Place property. I will know nothing further until I hear more from the DOT. _____________________________________________________________ In Koepp and Place’s original proposal submitted to the village in April 2006, they said :

“We intend to replace the culvert currently under Lake House with a much improved culvert that will be diverted around the foundations of Webb House.” On November 8, 2006, Koepp deceived the village into approving what the Planning Board believed was their Final Site Plan. But what was presented as a Final Site Plan did not actually have any final plan for a major aspect of their project – the stream that runs down the center of the property. The plan Koepp presented did not have DOT approval. The culvert plan that CJ Koepp told the Aurora Planning Board that the DOT was “fine” with did not involve us losing any of our land to the DOT. The plan the Koepp presented was the basis on which the house relocation was approved. It was false. This house relocation project should not and would not have been approved lacking a final approval by the DOT on the stream relocation. But, because of deception on the part of Koepp and Place, and laxity or bias on the part of village officials, this project was rushed into action. Mayor Gunderson and Doug Staley did not follow up on verifying the accuracy of Koepp/Place’s claims even after I repeatedly drew it to their attention. They ignored me. Although we have not received final notification, it appears that we are now facing a seizure and condemnation of our property by the DOT as a result of the decision that John Place and CJ Koepp made to willfully and knowingly put a house on top of a stream. The expense for this action by the DOT – for what was originally proposed as a privately financed stream relocation, for a private home - has now been thrown on to the backs of

New York State taxpayers by Koepp and Place because they willfully and knowingly put their house on top of a stream. This is your Department Of Transportation, this is your money being spent on this construction and property seizure, if you have any questions contact Chris Covert of the DOT, 315- 539-3112.