To The Daily Sun,
I am writing in response to Karen Sticht's letter complaining about the "favoritism" shown by Meredith's selectmen who approved additional signage at the docks for Meredith's Main Street businesses. It is remarkable how selective people can be in their outrage.
About 30 years ago, two sitting Meredith selectmen (one named Sticht) set out to develop the Old Province Commons shopping Center on Route 104. There were seemingly insurmountable zoning problems, as well as a lack of direct access to the sewer line (a town requirement). Miraculously, the Town Fathers found ways to permit the selectmen's project to proceed, while a competing proposal, also lacking direct sewer access, was shot down.
This outcome was not unique. Certain Meredith businessmen can get virtually whatever relief they need from the town, while others cannot. In this, Meredith is no different from any other municipality. Absent actual corruption (which I don't think is a problem in Meredith), it is more useful to focus on the merits of a proposal, rather than the motives of the officials voting on it.
Regarding the merits, it is well established that a vibrant downtown core is an essential element of an economically successful municipality. We in Meredith don't have to drive far to see examples of failed downtown business cores. Main Street businesses have struggled in the shadow of Mill Falls Marketplace for years. Anything the selectmen do to help direct tourists to Main Street is in the best interest of the entire town.
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