Wednesday September 19, 2012

Skatepark
discontent growing?

Editor of the Reformer:

I wish to add my voice to the growing discontent with the selection of the Crowell Lot for a skateboard park. Brattleboro needs a place for skateboarders to practice their skills and have fun. And Brattleboro also needs to preserve its green spaces. The Crowell Lot is beautiful and well used by so many families. Skateboarding is a loud activity that will invite too many negative changes to the park and its neighborhood.

I read one suggestion to locate the skatepark indoors, at the abandoned Home Depot building. If an investor were willing to take on such a project, we’d see Brattleboro become a destination for youth and their families from many places in the Northeast, bringing much needed dollars to our community. And many of the problems associated with other public skateparks (noise, vandalism, etc.) would be avoided. In the absence of such an investor, I wonder if the town might seriously consider an option that Rutland has developed. They use their indoor skating rink as an indoor skatepark once the winter sport season is complete. In this way, the facility becomes a full time four season resource, maximizing its utility. It’s a wonderful skatepark, better than any outdoor skatepark I’ve seen. Noise is contained and income is generated by minimum user fees. The park can be used during inclement weather. Bathrooms are available. Music can be played without causing problems for neighbors. The costs currently being considered for construction would cover the type of ramps and terrain features that would fit in the indoor skating facility.

Memorial Park is an easy bike ride from downtown for most kids. I’m not sure if there’s any significant drawbacks to such an option.

Paul Rodrigue,

Brattleboro, Sept. 14

Respect for residents

Editor of the Reformer:

Although I am for eating veggies, the article on The Thompson House in Saturday’s Reformer (Sept. 15-16) says, "They grew up eating food like this." These people aren’t cattle you know. "They" isn’t the proper way to address the residents there, or anywhere else for that matter. To use the term "eating food like this" sounds almost like you’re feeding pigs.

The other thing that I must comment on about the photo is, when handling food, especially in a medical facility, hair nets should be worn.

Roger L. Andrews,

Brattleboro, Sept. 15

Editor’s note: I assure you, no disrespect was intended.

Peyton discusses candidacy

Editor of the Reformer:

The press will say that the reason for their lack of interest in my platform and candidacy for governor is based on the lack of poll numbers. It must be obvious to any thinking person that poll numbers can only be honestly developed after public scrutiny, not before. Article after article the press frames the election as a challenge to Shumlin’s seat by Brock. During my outreach, people across the state are excited by my platform, and are much more pleased than not by my independent status. I am certain many of them would like to vote for me, but numbers of those will not want to waste their vote on someone who cannot win because the press will not put my platform up for broad public scrutiny.

Just about everyone I meet wants money out of politics. The vision of electing a governor of Vermont that does not accept campaign donations is a happy one for the majority. I challenge the premise that any leader can make unbiased and solid decisions while concurrently accepting campaign donations. Maybe the press has yet to recognize the mood in this state. It has yet to reach out to me for interviews, and chances are when it does, its coverage will be minimal and dismissive.

My platform is comprehensive and copes with the economy by bringing more money into circulation to work with. I often do my best to write the bullet points of the platform in these letters, but really, unless the press will bring it to you in the numbers of ways they are suited to do, it comes across like an army square meal; way too compacted and none of it expanded on. I must suffice it to say the principle components are based on established successes. 

To win this election I need 130,000 votes that are not tampered with. I want those votes. How could they come? Given the problem with the press and the growing use of Diebold machines in Vermont, it seems impossible. Someone left the slip from a fortune cookie on my kitchen table, it reads: "truly great accomplishments were at one time considered impossible."

Emily Peyton,

Independent candidate for governor

Putney, Sept. 15

Support for Dunbar

Editor of the Reformer:

I am writing this letter on behalf of Emmett Dunbar for State Representative. I have known Emmett on a professional and personal level for 15 years. I have worked with him as a client of Anjali Farm and side by side on numerous projects. His dedication, passion and commitment have made him an excellent farmer and advocate of local agriculture and small business in Vermont. I think that these qualities show that Emmett is a hard working dedicated person who would be an excellent voice for the people. We could use more contemporary driven leaders like him watching out for us and our future.

I have been involved with several events that Emmett has organized both on his farm and in the farmers’ markets to promote the local food system. These free community events educate people on the availability, seasonality and the practical uses of many local products for sale in our community. Through working with Emmett I have come to realize the need to support the farmers as the play a major part in our local economy and daily life.

Finally, Emmett’s commitment to education has been influential and inspiring in many ways. His constant investment to programs like "Ag. in the classroom" combined with the number of young students that have had a positive experience visiting Anjali Farm illustrates his care and belief in preserving Vermont’s working landscape. I think that having Emmett as a voice for the Windham-Bennington-Windsor District would be good for everyone.

Jeff Scott,

Manchester, Sept. 12

Support for Hoffer

Editor of the Reformer:

The position of State Auditor has to do with dollars and numbers. CPA Doug Hoffer, D/P, has the credentials and the track record to do a superb job. He visits Brattleboro Wednesday, Sept. 19.

Doug’s Republican opponent, a maverick from up north, has been a 32-year state assemblyman and sometime lawyer. When he approached me at the Vermont Expo this summer, I assumed that he would run to succeed the incumbent Attorney General. That turned out not to be the case. Already there are complaints about his criticism of VSP overtime and of his own campaign finance accounting. These are numbers matters, which is what the Audit job is all about, and for which his qualifications appear to be slim.

Doug Hoffer, the D/P candidate, is committed to accountable state expenses, better and more efficient use of state resources, and greater transparency in the job of State Auditor. His investigative work on the Vermont job gap is legend. At a critical time in our Vermont life, Doug is probably the most experienced economic development authority in the state.

This election gives all of us a chance to elect a man who is fit for the job. Doug Hoffer deserves to be our new state auditor.

Alan O. Dann,

Marlboro, Sept. 17