Bill Farmer was a fixture of the New York City scene for decades.
The former owner of the Fox Farm in Rockland County has been fighting for years to protect his historic farm from being demolished.
He has filed lawsuits over the years against several large developers, and he was recently awarded a $30 million judgment against a developer who is now looking to tear down the property.
The owner is now fighting to keep the property open for farming, but Farmer is pushing for an exemption to his permit.
Farmer told WBUR that he has received more than 2,000 letters about his farm and is considering a number of legal options.
We’re going to fight to keep this farm open.
We’ll keep fighting.
We will continue to fight for Bill Farmer’s right to farm this property, said Farmington Hills lawyer Brian DeMeyer.
He said the property was the source of so much frustration and anger that it was worth preserving.
Farmington is located on a marshland near the Fox River and in a remote part of the Catskills.
The site was designated as a wildlife refuge in 1986 and is managed by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection.
It is a former hog pen with a large pond that was once the home of an alligator.
Bill Farmer says he believes the pond was destroyed in the early 1900s by a fire.
The property is currently a park, but the ponds are still there.
The Fox Farm is not listed on the state’s National Historic Register.
The Catskill Fire of 1906, which killed four people and injured hundreds, was blamed on an alligators that had been roaming the area.
The alligators had previously lived on the Fox and were found dead in the marsh in 1915, according to the National Park Service.
Farmer says the pond’s location is important.
He says that the pond is the largest of the two ponds on the property and it was not built with flood protection in mind.
Farmer’s attorneys say that the alligators were likely brought in by people who didn’t want to live in a marsh.
He told WBUL that he’s considering an appeal.
The state is seeking to have the owners’ permit for the Fox to remain open.
Farmer said he is going to file a motion with the court to stay the demolition.
We’ve had a lot of people come and visit us over the last year and a half, and we’re still trying to convince them that it’s worth preserving the property, Farmer said.
We have a lot going on with the lawsuit that we’re working through.
We are going to keep fighting, he added.
Farmer is seeking an exemption from the permit so that the building can remain open for agriculture, but that exemption must be based on the condition of the pond.
Farmer also wants the owners to stop using his property to raise cattle, which would require a permit.
The owners’ lawsuit was filed in New Jersey Superior Court, but a decision on the motion is expected in the next couple of weeks.