Cell tower not for the benefit of Putney residents

Editor of the Reformer:

Your editorial concerning the Putney cell tower ("Something has to give," Jan. 20) missed the mark.

You begin by affirming residents efforts to confront AT&T about haphazard cell tower placement and about AT&T trying to convince town residents that the Shag Bark Hill tower is in our best interest (not theirs). Thank you for that support but the issue is bigger than what you outline. It is about Vermont towns no longer having a say and town residents no longer having rights while telecommunication companies battle it out for territory. It makes sense that town conservation commissions, town planning commissions, and residents together with the cell service providers decide what is in the best interest of the town as a whole in regard to the placement of these high impact structures.

Did you ask yourself, who will this tower benefit? Not the residents who need coverage on Putney Mountain and not the customers who currently have cell service by other providers. It is more important to AT&T not to lose their customers travelling along Interstate 91 than benefitting Putney residents. We are asking for more thoughtful planning and we are asking for AT&T to consider alternatives that work better for the town as a whole.

Near the end of your opinion piece you change your tone and cast a stereotypical pallor over the town. My hope is that Putney residents continue to question the purpose and methods of companies that want to transform our rural residential neighborhoods. On Shag Bark Hill, the proposed tower would loom over abutting land owners much smaller plots. If we are being asked to take one for the team -- let us not be duped into thinking it is for the common good, if indeed, it is not. I encourage our Selectboard members and Planning Commission members to recommend against this project.

Holly Hammond,

Putney, Jan. 24

Before you flush, think

Editor of the Reformer:

I’ve noticed a few things of late. Two things, actually. First, most public men’s rooms have one urinal, which probably requires very little water to flush, and maybe one or two toilets, each of which requires considerably more water to flush than the urinal. Second, most men are wicked impatient. In they confidently stroll, see that the urinal is occupied, and spring into a stall as though the fate of the free world depended upon it. In so doing, they save 20 seconds, maybe, and waste a whole bunch of water, definitely.

Boys, really, unless your back teeth are floating, how about spending the few seconds you’ll save by using the toilet instead of the urinal contemplating the richness of life. Or critically admiring your most recent haircut in the conveniently provided mirror. Or whatever. Before you know it, the gent at the urinal will have completed his mission and, with any luck, will be washing his hands of the whole business. There. Great thoughts have been thunk, disarrayed hairs have been whipped into shape and an impressive amount of water has been saved. I don’t know about you, but I feel better already.

Michael Hudson,

Putney, Jan. 24