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ANCHORAGE - Point Possession on the Kenai Peninsula has been sold to the federal government and will become part of the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge.
The Conservation Fund, a nonprofit environmental group, brokered the $3.3 million sale of the 4,247-acre tract by Native corporation Point Possession Inc. to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
Point Possession is a knuckle of land that points north toward Fire Island, south of Anchorage. Developers hoped to turn it into a resort community while conservationists wanted to see it kept in its natural state. And tiny Point Possession Inc. wanted to cash in on the land it selected under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act of 1971.
Conservationists and Native corporation shareholders say they're thrilled with the sale. People who hoped to develop the land are disappointed.
"My family was there when Captain Cook landed, so we're really glad it's going to stay as it was," said Norman Kallandar, president of Point Possession Inc. "I think everyone's really happy that the Fish and Wildlife Service ended up with it."
Kenai Peninsula Borough Mayor Dale Bagley said he was disheartened by the news of the sale. The administration had hoped the land could be developed to diversify the Nikiski-area economy.
The purchase, which closed Aug. 27, was made with federal funds secured by U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens.