Un­recorded wa­ter util­ity deed recorded in Per­ryville

Cole fam­ily heir called in to help



— As the town pre­pared to work on a piece of land it has owned for more than 50 years, a miss­ing piece of pa­per was hold­ing up the progress.

In Jan­uary and March 1960, the Board of Town Com­mis­sion­ers passed res­o­lu­tions show­ing Per­ryville had pur­chased the wa­ter sys­tem owned at that time by Gertrude and Don­ald­son Cole Sr. — Per­ryville Wa­ter Com­pany of Ce­cil County, Denise Breder, town ad­min­is­tra­tor, said Fri­day.

The util­ity in­cluded a reser­voir, pump­ing fa­cil­ity, equip­ment and 18 wooded acres.

“All the res­o­lu­tions were


passed and the Coles en­tered into the agree­ment of the sale,” Breder said of the town doc­u­ments found.

But there was some­thing miss­ing.

“What hap­pened was the deed was never recorded,” Breder said.

That pa­per­work mis­step was dis­cov­ered re­cently as the town sought ap­proval from the county and the state to pro­ceed with plans to re­tire the aged reser­voir. Breder said Fred Suss­man, the town’s at­tor­ney, re­searched the trans­fer to find who held le­gal right to the prop­erty.

“Our claim is cor­rect,” Breder said, but added Suss­man found a de­scen­dent of the Coles.

“Re­becca Cole is the sur­viv­ing per­son of record for the es­tate,” Breder said, not­ing she signed an af­fi­davit con­firm­ing that the sale had taken place and that Per- ryville did own the rights to the prop­erty.

A suit seek­ing quiet ti­tle to that end has been filed in Ce­cil County Cir­cuit Court. A quiet ti­tle case is used to set­tle prop­erty dis­putes.

Per­ryville used the reser­voir to sup­ply wa­ter to its res­i­dents un­til 1973. Since 2013, the mayor and com­mis­sion­ers have been dis­cussing what to do with the prop­erty with sug­ges­tions rang­ing from do­ing noth­ing, to mak­ing it a park to sell­ing it off.

Last month, two en­gi­neer­ing groups ap­proached the board with plans to con­duct a stream restora­tion project along Mill Creek, which sup­plies wa­ter to the reser­voir. This “com­pen­satory mit­i­ga­tion” project would be to make en­vi­ron­men­tal amends for any dam­age done in the con­struc­tion of a new busi­ness in the Prin­ci­pio Busi­ness Park.


In this file photo, Per­ryville Mayor Jim Eber­hardt and Ralph Ryan, the town’s en­gi­neer, lis­ten to PJ Meekins from the town public works depart­ment de­tail the con­di­tion of the reser­voir that used to be part of the town’s wa­ter treat­ment plant from the 1900s un­til 1973.

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