Mountain Accord out, Snowbird moves on with land deal

AMERICAN FORK, Utah (ABC 4 UTAH) - The Mountain Accord backed out of negotiations over American Fork Canyon.

This comes after Utah County Commissioners asked them to remove Utah County out of any negotiations the Mountain Accord was having.

Laynee Jones the Mountain Accord Program Manager said, "We are respecting their wishes. We agree that a lot more public information and public dialog is needed and so we are very supportive of their wishes."

Utah County Commissioner Greg Graves is happy with the decision saying, "I believe that is the right decision. It is an important part of the planning for the future of Utah County to take place within and with Utah County officials and their citizens."

While the Mountain Accord is out of negotiations over the land swap, Snowbird is moving forward.

"We (the Commissioners) understand the questions that are out there and our main thought right now is making sure that we are planning properly for the future growth of the county and canyon specifically, to allow everyone to continue to recreate the way they always have and in as safe as way possible," said Commissioner Graves.

Snowbird wants to swap out 1000 acres of their land for 416 acres of U.S. Forest Service land at the top of American Fork Canyon.

Snowbird President Bob Bonar said, "We plan to continue to work with all stakeholders in Utah and Salt Lake counties through this process."

The canyon is mostly used for hiking and camping. If the land swap goes though that could change.

"I'm a snowboarder, so you know more land to go riding on. But I'm also a dirt biker, there are some trains and some of my best rides are up there. So I'm kind of in the middle," said resident Chase Richardson.

"It is just awesome the way it is. I don't think we need to have Snowbird up there to change things," said Cole Farnsworth.

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