To The Daily Sun,
Over the past several months there has been nothing short of major drama going on in the town of Bristol that pitted two selectmen and police chief against three selectmen and a group of taxpayers over the purposed purchase of a piece of property for a new police station.
The proponents say that we need more space to house an ever busier police department. The police requested a facility with not less than four holding cells a sally-port and other amenities. The opponents say we have an over-sized police department for a town of 3,000 and have numerous options that would be far more economical than purchasing an existing large facility that would require substantial renovation to accommodate the needs of a police department. The proponents negotiated a deal with the owners of the property that would have required a special town meeting to complete the purchase prior to a specified date.
At a tense meeting the selectboard voted down a motion for a special town meeting and voted to commission a study by a third party to see what the actual needs of the town are. I applaud this decision.
I am not opposed to upgrading police facilities, if needed. But to enter into an agreement on such short notice without the recommendations of an objective, professional third party seems to be the height of folly.
This past week the property in question has been sold to a reputable retail chain. This is the best solution possible. The property stays on the tax rolls, the town increases employment opportunities and the taxpayers will eventually get an upgrade in police facilities based on actual needs.
When all is said and done, attracting new business, creating jobs and adding to the tax base is the business of the town.
- Category: Letters
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