Seneca White Deer Inc. (SWD) congratulated Earl Martin on the selection of his bid for purchase of the former Seneca Army Depot. Last December, the Seneca County Industrial Development Agency (IDA), which currently owns the Depot, invited bids to purchase all or a portion of the Depot. Mr. Martin was selected as the winning bidder in June.
SWD President Dennis Money said, “Although we were disappointed that our bids for the Depot weren’t selected, we’re glad that the IDA picked a bid with a strong deer management plan. We’re encouraged by Mr. Martin’s enthusiasm and attitude toward protecting this valuable environmental resource.” SWD had partnered with the Town of Varick on a Depot bid for the land in that town and had entered a second bid for another portion of the property.
In response to questions about funds that SWD had raised to purchase Depot property, Money said, “After submitting our bids, we have significant funds remaining. We plan to use these in support of the deer management program and perhaps to support visitor facilities. We thank everyone who has generously contributed to our effort.”
Money continued, “We’ve met with Mr. Martin several times and have an ongoing dialog regarding his plans. We’re encouraged by our initial discussions and we are optimistic that we can work productively together to bring the wonder of the white deer to the public.”
He continued, “We understand that Mr. Martin currently has his hands full getting all the details settled to finalize the purchase of the property. It may be quite a while before a full-scale visitor program will be in place. We commend his immediate efforts to increase the deer’s food supply by planting crops that will nourish them, even before he has closed on purchase of the property.”
Martin has planted soybeans on the northern portion of the former Depot and announced plans to plant other crops, such as clover, grasses and turnips to help rebuild the white deer population. He has stated that he would like to open the property to the public to see the white deer next spring.
Money said, “It’s great that Mr. Martin is not only protecting the deer, but making plans to share them with the public. This has always been one of our highest priorities.” SWD is continuing to discuss the organization’s role in Mr. Martin’s deer management and visitor program.