That was a fairly short conversation,” Turner says. “The people of Connecticut have long depended upon Long Island Sound’s natural resources – that is why [The Nature] Conservancy works with federal, state and local partners to protect and manage it’s critical coastal and marine habitats,” said Frogard Ryan, The Nature Conservancy’s Connecticut executive director. In 2016, Connecticut Fund for the Environment/Save the Sound and six other organizations and individuals filed suit against the Department of Homeland Security and General Services Administration to prevent the sale of the island. Chris Cryder, outreach coordinator for the Preserve Plum Island Coalition and special projects coordinator for Save The Sound, shares his views on keeping Plum Island in the public domain during a public forum in 2015 in New Haven on the environmental and ecological significance of the island. 4571 Plum Island Ct is a house in Las Vegas, NV 89147. “I was lucky enough to visit Plum Island to better understand its ecological importance as a haven for migrating seals and shorebirds.”. 4592 Plum Island Ct is located in Spring Valley, Spring Valley. It would be a natural because it would be a prime target for his development, but I’m unaware of any development by Donald Trump.”. Protect Plum Island ... Norwich, CT 06360. “But it is also home to many interesting cultural resources including the Plum Island lighthouse [built in 1869].”. The 1,910 sq. That’s a shame, Gregg says, as, much like other aspects of the island, the beach is truly one of a kind. Congress has an obligation to protect this island and its natural resources.”. There’s pending litigation on it.”. A family-friendly Newburyport attraction, Plum Island Beach offers many fun and interesting things to do. Gregg, the longtime Plum Island veterinarian, is among the skeptics. The facility will be relocated to Kansas and the government is hoping that a private sale will help pay for the new lab. “We do not believe that the statute required the sale of the rest of the island and it certainly didn’t require the sale to the highest bidder,” Reynolds says. Eight miles off the coast of Connecticut and 1½ miles from Long Island, the island is home to the Plum Island Animal Disease Center and has long held the public’s imagination. 7.7 miles from Plum Island #7 of 42 hotels in Hampton “ The room was clean , the owners were very friendly and accommodating and the patio was large and comfortable with two grills available for cooking our lunch. Plum Island is a pork chop shaped island, about one mile and a half off the north fork shore at Orient Point, Long Island. “So although it’s a safety net with the new zoning, it’s not the ultimate safety net. “Nothing is classified,” he says. 4595 Plum Island Ct is located in Spring Valley, Las Vegas. “Unfortunately we’ve seen too many occasions where deep-pocketed developers can outlast shallow-pocketed towns and ultimately push to get new zoning in place,” he says. Once there, those who work inside the “hot zone” — any area with dangerous diseases — go through a rigorous decontamination process involving showers, a change of clothes and a quarantine from farm animals after leaving the island that can last as long as a week. With the sale of the island no longer on the table, federal agencies are expected to review any possible continued federal uses for the land when the research center moves to its new Kansas facility that is still under construction. Courtesy of the Agricultural Research Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. ‘Hell yes, we are,’ says Illinois’ Adam Kinzinger. This 1,911 square foot house sits on a 5,227 square foot lot and features 4 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms. So we’re confident that any challenges to zoning down the road, we’d be successful. The Department of Agriculture dispatched inspectors to Long Island dairy farms to ensure infections had not spread to the mainland. “Conceivably, you could carry out viruses in your nose,” Gregg says. The remainder of Plum Island is a largely untouched natural terrain of brush and trees. Ideally, some would like to see the labs converted into a research facility operated in collaboration between Connecticut and New York universities. This property is not currently available for sale. It inspired the plot and title of a 1997 Nelson DeMille novel, and Hannibal Lecter was offered visits there in exchange for cooperation in The Silence of the Lambs. It inspired the plot and title of a 1997 Nelson DeMille novel, and Hannibal Lecter was offered visits there in exchange for cooperation in The Silence of the Lambs. At that time, Trump’s representatives reached out to Turner. He thought the lab could be converted to a one-of-a-kind island golf course. The local community wanted no part of the type of high-density condo or hotel development being talked about on the island. The island is situated in Gardiners Bay, east of Orient Point, off the eastern end of the North Fork coast of Long Island. • Conspiracy theories have spread that falsely allege Lyme disease, first documented in nearby Lyme, CT, was a bioweapon that originated at Plum Island laboratory. There are several elements to the complaint brought against the government regarding the sale of Plum Island. View 35 photos for 4571 Plum Island Ct, Las Vegas, NV 89147 a 4 bed, 3 bath, 1,911 Sq. In an ongoing effort, Plum Island scientists have done pioneering work to develop a cost-effective and reliable foot-and-mouth vaccine. The town also created a research district on the footprint of the lab facility that cannot be expanded. Did you like what you read here? Even if these efforts in Congress are unsuccessful, the island’s development is far from a foregone conclusion. He only lasted two years on the island. Turner reread this last part to make sure he hadn’t misunderstood. Animals studied on Plum Island never leave. I think he’s got plenty of interests in the world that he doesn’t have to really focus on Plum Island.”, When asked about Trump’s interest, Blumenthal, who has sometimes been the subject of Trump’s criticism on Twitter, says, “I’ve never heard or seen Donald Trump mention Plum Island. “This exquisite environmental treasure has been spared a headlong rush to sell to the highest bidder,” Blumenthal said. So I drove around, and if I didn’t drive around nobody drove around, and I sure didn’t carry a gun.”. More troublingly, zoning laws can change at any time. Before the outbreak there was a lot of construction on the island. It is easily accessible via the village of … By October 2013, Plum Island had caught Trump’s eye. View more property details, sales history and Zestimate data on Zillow. “While I was there, I did a round of the island pretty well daily. I wanted to see animals like deer that swim across from Gardiners Island. Archived specimens show that Lyme disease was endemic well before the establishment of Plum Island laboratory. Humans are not susceptible to the diseases studied at Plum Island, but the precautions are necessary to protect animals. It is approximately 10 miles across Long Island Sound from US submarine base at Groton, Connecticut. In September 1978, animal-care workers began to notice symptoms that looked suspiciously like foot-and-mouth disease in animals kept outdoors on the island. “I don’t know that it’s tremendously impactful, [but] it is still people who are losing their jobs in southeastern Connecticut where we struggle to replace jobs.”. The construction led to animals being delivered to the lab via a different route than normal. “We will continue to fight to preserve this special gem from future development. I never found that to be a reasonable concern. At 840 acres it is sizable but smaller than its neighbors, the 3,318-acre Gardiners Island and the 7,000-acre Block Island. “Plum Island really has become an island of international importance, particularly from a wildlife perspective,” Cryder says. What animals are native to the island. View more property details, sales history and Zestimate data on Zillow. It is a perfect way to spend a few hours, walking or sitting to enjoy nature. At the top of this infection food chain was foot-and-mouth disease. 4552 Plum Island Ct … They gave them a little more air and unfortunately [the air pressure] became positive.”. According to preservationists’ interpretation of the wording, only the small section of the island with the facility has to be sold. All the animals on the island — approximately 200 cattle, pigs and sheep — were killed. Plum Island is accessible by Government Ferryboat only. You need a commitment to good stewardship and management of that island.”. Before that happened, a new role was envisioned, one that would help the country defend not from submarines, but from a potentially more dangerous and stealthy enemy: viruses. While he worked at the island, he says “everybody was quite proud of the fact that the island was a preserve of sorts outside of the laboratory.”, Every year, those who worked on the island and family members would gather for a beach day. At the start of its new life, Plum Island was shared by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Army Chemical Corps. “[The court held] that it is an environmental asset that us and our members do appreciate. Douglas Gregg, a veterinarian and diagnostic pathologist who worked on Plum Island from 1976 until 2007, says intense safety precautions are taken on the island. Despite these precautions, mistakes were made. Conservation efforts have garnered bipartisan support in Connecticut and Long Island. Foot-and-mouth disease, also called hoof-and-mouth disease, is a virus that affects cattle, sheep, goats, pigs and other animals, but not humans. Lyme is just a few miles north of Plum Island – which would make it “ground zero” for any possible disease that escaped the confines of the Animal Disease Center. Once workers handled animals infected with foot-and-mouth, they would not handle any other animals that day. 4552 Plum Island Ct is a house in Las Vegas, NV 89147. (Like the flu, foot-and-mouth is difficult to vaccinate for because each vaccination only protects against specific strains.). So now the math has changed.”. “Containing approximately 840 acres, the island boasts sandy shoreline, beautiful views and a harbor strategically situated to provide easy access from the Orient Point facility or elsewhere,” the listing states. Turner, a longtime Long Island preservationist, was determined to prevent this and protect the island as a natural resource. They need to go through their normal process for the rest of the island. If the state of New York didn’t want it then it goes to a municipality. The case is ongoing. Zach Murdock can be reached at zmurdock@courant.com. Blumenthal believes this year might finally bring a repeal. The 1,760 sq. Therefore we believe they should liquidate and sell the Animal Disease Center and the assets related to that. In a break with procedure, the animal-care workers were not showering after delivering the animals to the lab. Rep. Lee Zeldin, a Republican congressman from New York, and Connecticut Sen. Richard Blumenthal, a Democrat, have both supported legislation to stop the sale. Chris Cryder, outreach coordinator for the Preserve Plum Island Coalition and special projects coordinator for Save the Sound, says the island is important for those in Connecticut, New York and beyond. In the years to come, developers would talk about potential future uses for the island, which often included golf courses, condos and hotels, or some combination. 4560 Plum Island Ct , Las Vegas, NV 89147-4790 is currently not for sale. “There was always this mystic, mystic thing about Plum Island and any horrible disease that was on the mainland probably had to have [been] done by Plum Island, which is, of course, not so,” Powitz says. “It would be a low-key and beautiful use for the area.”. The website gives the historical information the Plum Island Animal Disease Center was managed by the U.S. Army Chemical Corps as a component of its biological warfare program in 1952. The 840-acre Plum Island, just 10 miles from Connecticut shores, has for decades been home to the Animal Disease Center federal research facility. Plum Island is an island in the town of Southold in Suffolk County, New York, in the United States. This article appeared in the March 2018 issue of Connecticut Magazine. Indeed, the 840-acre island seemed to represent some of the most sought-after and expensive real estate in the world, nestled, as it was, between the ultra-developed and pricey Connecticut and Long Island coasts. Email notifications are only sent once a day, and only if there are new matching items. You have permission to edit this article. 4595 Plum Island Ct was last sold on May 23, 2013 for $242,962. In the hopes of garnering more lasting protection of the island, the Preserve Plum Island Coalition began to explore options outside of local or federal governments. First Selectman Carl Fortuna Jr. says the 200 workers who take the ferry to Plum Island from Connecticut are a mix of Old Saybrook residents and commuters from nearby Connecticut towns. Ft. single family home built in 2013 that sold on 09/27/2019. Fortuna would like to see the jobs remain and the island be opened as a type of preserve, which he believes could be a small economic driver for the town and the region. Let's say for the sake of argument that the Lyme spirochete did originate on Plum Island as a genetically modified single celled organism. Plum Island is a popular spot for seals to congregate. According to a Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate fact sheet, the most updated risk assessment for the facility “estimates the expected probability of an accidental release of viable Foot and Mouth Disease resulting in a subsequent outbreak during [its] 50-year operating lifetime is de minimis — approximately one tenth of one percent. The Conservancy and lawmakers plan to work with the incoming members of President-elect Joe Biden’s administration to conduct those reviews and determine next steps for Plum Island’s future, though the ongoing pandemic and presidential transitions leave all involved without a firm time table, said Holly Drinkuth, Conservancy director of outreach and watershed projects. What animals come to the island. “I told him, ‘Well, look, the zoning is in place and unless Mr. Trump wants to get involved in the world of preservation and biotech research, none of what he wants to do there is permitted by town code,’ ” Russell says. Plum Island’s successor, the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility, is under construction on the Kansas State University campus in Manhattan, Kansas. Unlike Plum Island, it will also be on the mainland, which will save operating costs and which Verrico and other experts say won’t pose a containment problem. Located at the eastern end of Long Island Sound, Plum Island is a key breeding and stopover site for thousands of birds, including at-risk and priority … How do I travel from Connecticut to Plum Island without a car? Russell never heard from the representative again, but says, “After Trump won the election there was speculation out here that he was going to try to have the island zoning overturned. There has not been a foot-and-mouth outbreak since. Even in the highly unlikely event that Plum Island once more arrived on now-President Trump’s radar, his authority would be limited, Russell says. This property is not currently available for sale. “It just requires a sale. These animals had not, in theory, been exposed to the disease. “But it’s still 600 some acres of the island [that] are not developed.”. He saw the island as a “national treasure,” a place where, almost by accident, a variety of important animal habitats had been preserved. Plum Island is a unique environmental resource that is home to hundreds of species of wildlife and numerous important historical sites that must be preserved for future generations to enjoy. The island is home to a number of endangered and rare wildlife species as well as a lighthouse built in 1869 and Fort Terry, a U.S. Army post built in 1897. Before any of that becomes a possibility, the island’s sale to a private company has to be prevented. We fish around it, we enjoy the wildlife that the island supports, and by failing to do an appropriate environmental analysis that we would suffer a concrete injury.”, The government will have to answer the complaint filed, and Reynolds says, “Then we have to make our case before the judge and the federal government has to make its case as to why they should be allowed to sell it at this point, and then the judge will make a decision, and that can be anywhere from one to three years down the road.”, Asked about the future of Plum Island and its potential sale, Verrico, the Homeland Security spokesperson, says, “What ultimately happens to the island, whatever happens to the real estate itself, is outside of anything I can talk about at this point because right now we don’t know. “The Army Chemical Corps’ job was to do biological warfare, but they didn’t last on the island very long,” says Amy Kasuga Folk, a coauthor of A World Unto Itself. It will be completed by 2022, Verrico says, and around that time operations will be transferred from Plum Island. A million birds rest on the island before flying on to the Connecticut River estuaries in Lyme, CT. IKEA asks MAGA supporters not to gather in its New Haven parking lot ahead of pro-Trump car parade by the Capitol, Daily coronavirus updates: Connecticut formally expands next phase of COVID-19 vaccinations; state reports lowest single-day positivity rate in months, UConn men’s game vs St. John’s now on Fox; Dan Hurley a ‘superhero;’ other Huskies notes, Jon Lender: DPH communications chief was fired for questioning legality of order that might have meant ‘interfering’ in murder probe, his lawyer says, Manchester creates curbside program to support downtown merchants during pandemic. When questionable diseases are discovered in U.S. livestock, samples from affected animals are sometimes flown by helicopter to the island, where scientists work to diagnose the disease and attempt to prevent an outbreak. Though he loved the work, the 30- to 40-minute ferry ride each way was too much for him. He was horrified. Phone: (860) 741-6011 Conservationists would like to see the island turned into some type of preserve, possibly even a national park. The Nature Conservancy, other environmental groups and lawmakers battled for years to get the government to change course and last year won a one-year halt to any sale. The 843 acre island of wild beach and dune bluffs off of Long Island is home to a federal animal disease testing research facility but it is now for sale. The Island is also the site of the former U.S. military installati… Plum Island is very small but has a clean, sandy beach. If the municipality doesn’t want it, then non-government organizations, for example, like conservation organizations, would have a crack at it.”. The battle lines had been drawn and Plum Island was entering what was arguably the strangest era of its often strange history. There was a problem saving your notification. It’s the best beach on Long Island, probably.”. The distance between Connecticut and Plum Island is 43 miles. Members of Connecticut's congressional delegation, Sen. Richard Blumenthal, left, and Rep. Joe Courtney, take a tour around Plum Island in 2013. The current lab facility on Plum Island is surrounded by fences and No trespassing signs. 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