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Letter to the Editor: Shortsighted Decisions Last A Lifetime: Vote No

November 4, 2016 Government, Opinion, Referendum No Comments

To the Editor:

The proposal to rebuild the town garage on Old River Road is shortsighted, irresponsible, and will only hurt the town in the long term.

Sadly, we realize that not all voters care about the long-term viability of this town. As third and fourth generation residents of Canton planning to raise a family here, we do.

The Farmington River is a focal point of Canton for both residents and visitors, and is touted as key to the economic development and the future of our town, just as it was when Sam Collins chose this area as the location for his factory 190 years ago.

Surprisingly, while the Town encourages recreation and use of the river, it offers no public access to the water and is now considering squandering an opportunity to do so. Instead, it proposes a new, smaller garage that could be built at several other locations.

Most people realize that building the garage in the floodplain is an issue. Some don’t care, and others are tired of talking and just want it built. Both are poor excuses for a yes vote on Nov. 8.

It’s disheartening to hear how many people feel the garage should be rebuilt where it is because the sewage treatment plant is already next-door. Just because the town chose a regrettable location for the treatment plant 50 years ago does not make it acceptable for us to throw away another piece of riverfront that could be put to better use.

People far more qualified than us, including members of the Permanent Municipal Building Committee, the Farmington River Watershed Association, and nationally recognized emergency management experts, among others, have all come forward saying that the garage should not be rebuilt where it is.

How much more do voters need to hear before they reach the same obvious conclusion?

We all know the process of rebuilding the town garage has taken far too long.  Our Public Works employees deserve a safer and more suitable location from which to perform their work, but moving the garage away from the river is the right thing to do now and for the generations to come.

Please consider what is best not only for our current residents, but Canton’s future residents. If the garage is rebuilt on the river, this mistake will live on when all of us are gone. Don’t make a decision that others will pay the price for years from now just to “get it over with.” Vote NO on November 8.

Jason Asaro and Jennifer Barlow Asaro
Collinsville

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