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Utility approves settlement Crescent Bar leaseholders


Grant PUD commissioners voted Tuesday, July 28 during their regular meeting to approve a final settlement that will end a legal dispute with Crescent Bar leaseholders, who sued after the utility decided they couldn’t stay on a publicly-owned island in the Columbia River it needed to convert to public use, rather than private.

Defendant Grant PUD and plaintiffs Crescent Bar leaseholders reached a preliminary agreement to settle the lawsuit on April 14, the PUD noted in a press release.

The Crescent Bar leaseholders filed the lawsuit in 2011, following Grant PUD’s announcement that it would not allow private residences on the island after the utility’s lease with the Port of Quincy was set to expire in 2012.

During the course of the litigation in U.S. District Court, Judge Justin L. Quackenbush encouraged both parties to avoid a potentially lengthy and costly trial by seeking mediation to resolve their differences. Both parties began discussions to settle the lawsuit in 2014.

Under terms of the settlement, access to 80 percent of the Crescent Bar area previously under lease will be fully available to the public. The residents will be allowed to remain on the island through at least 2047 under a new lease agreement. They will be required to pay fair-market rent to Grant PUD retroactive to 2012 and will also pay their share of needed capital upgrades for wastewater treatment and fire-safety infrastructure.

During the July 28 meeting, Grant PUD commissioners also approved a recreation plan for the island that includes keeping the existing golf course, as well as developing 55 public RV campsites, an enhanced on-island boat launch, moorage, day-use picnic area, swim beach, walking trail, public parking and concessions.


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