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Letter to the Editor: It’s Time to Support Those That Unwaveringly Support You

November 2, 2016 Government, Opinion, Referendum No Comments

To the Editor:

After reviewing the scores of letters circulating around town as well as many distorted truths, I feel it’s my duty to the community that my family and I call home to cut through the propaganda and provide voters with the facts while they contemplate this extremely important referendum.  The reality is that this comes down to emotional ideals versus facts.

Yes, the riverbank was never the most ideal site to locate a town garage if we could start from scratch today but the truth is, if we can’t support moving a <$4mm garage in decades, how can we purport voters will ever get behind spending an estimated $30mm+ to move the sewage treatment facility to create this proposed utopia along a few acres of riverfront boxed in by River Road and other businesses that will never relocate?  We chose to locate all our municipal infrastructure in this location long before residential neighborhoods filled the rest of the open space in town. 

Your elected Board of Selectmen have done an excellent job vetting all sites and are truly acting in the town’s best interest to put forth a plan to rebuild the garage where it has stood for decades and through multiple 100 year storms.  To believe there will magically be other suitable sites that NIMBY groups will not reject reminds me of someone that only points out a problem but offers no solutions.  There is no other viable site in town any group has proposed that could pass a vote.  Let’s also make it clear that the plan removes the garage from the 100 year flood plain contrary to incorrect rumors being spread around town.

Even at a lower elevation which it will be raised significantly from, the garage has survived every hurricane thrown at it since its existence.  The new plan also provides many positives including much needed public restrooms on the bike path that I’m sure anyone with children will appreciate.  We love canoeing in the river and have never felt the garage location detracted from our experience.   So, from an investment standpoint, raising the garage and saving millions of dollars by finally protecting our infrastructure from rust and the elements along with stopping the future spending of hundreds of thousands more in additional site studies and providing the ability to lower the insurance deductible from $500k to $50k on the property is obviously the most prudent decision you can make.

But back to the issue at hand, let’s not forget the hard working crew at the DPW that keeps our town running in our hardest times.  These men and women have been working in absolutely deplorable conditions that private industry would never accept.  Yet, our town has repeatedly voted to ignore this.  Just imagine if you owned a business and you had shareholders that decided the fate of where you could and could not build your headquarters based off their personal vendettas.  The NOOR Group proposes the most incomplete business plan I’ve ever seen.  That is the reason the entire DPW staff is behind rebuilding the garage where it is and supports a “Yes” vote.  They are the most important voice in all of this which is being forgotten.

A “Yes” vote for this referendum is your way to support your town, finally settle a decades-long issue, and take care of our hard working town staff that unwaveringly takes care of you regardless of your personal opinions.  This is the most sound and financially-viable plan ever proposed and that we will likely ever see.  A “Yes” vote is critical to begin protecting our investments today.  And be assured, a “No” vote ultimately means that a new proposed location will be in some voter’s back yard down the road.  Please ignore the baseless, idealist propaganda and last minute diversion attempts and join me and many of the thoughtful leaders in our town by voting “Yes” on November 8th.

Most Respectfully, 
Brendan Perkins

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