To The Daily Sun,
I can't even bring my children to the beach anymore without finding drug paraphernalia everywhere.
A few inches from where my 5-year-old son was writing in the Bartlett Beach sand was a needle. Luckily, my husband saw it before my son did. My husband went to throw it away, and low and behold there were more needles in the trash. Our kids cannot even be safe playing at the beach.
With nice weather coming I fear for the safety of all Laconia children whose families believe it is a safe place to bring their kids. I did not report this to the police because last year when my children and husband found one, he stopped guarded it and waited for the police only to be told to bring it to the hospital. Like it was his responsibility to get rid of a junkie's needle. Um, no, sorry.
My friends have advised me to call the Fire Department and maybe I will get a better outcome.
I feel I need to warn city residents that Laconia's beaches have become a playground for junkies.
Last Updated on Monday, 05 May 2014 09:10
To The Daily Sun,
As a long-time resident of Gilmanton, I would like to comment on the Gilmanton Year-Round Library situation.
At its inception I read any and all articles pertaining to this lofty endeavor which appeared in The Sun or The Citizen, or fliers sent out by them. They did indeed claim that they would not come to the town for support and would raise all money to sustain it with fundraisers and such. I thought that this was a very civic and charitable deed by this group of people. I understood that is would be privately owned.
I, like many, was shocked the first it came out that they wanted the town to share the cost of running it. I thought that this was certainly bringing it in through the back door. The Board of the Gilmanton Year-Round Library could bring this to a close by simply producing verifiable dated documentation of their announcing this to the public that they expected the town to support it with tax dollars. The proper course of action would have been for the town to vote on this then and there, not after they opened the doors.
Last Updated on Monday, 05 May 2014 09:04
To The Daily Sun,
At our Sanbornton Planning Board's recent presentation of six "Proposed Zoning Amendments for Town Meeting 2014," I learned much. Of the six amendments, only two are about workforce housing. Those two, if passed, give us protections against would-be builders launching court challenges. If we lay out our rules clearly, and they are not obstructive, then court challenges by builders are least likely.
A 2008-2010 law instituted by our state Legislature requires X-amount of workforce housing per town. These two amendments anticipate and take care of problems we'd easily have if we don't pass them.
However, an anonymous orange-colored political flyer, sent by mass-mailing to the townspeople, fear-mongers and directs people to vote "no" to all the six amendments, even though some are merely housekeeping, as in updating a map date. A second public hearing on these amendments is set for the morning of Saturday, May 10, at 10 a.m., Old Town Hall.
This may not seem a money issue, but it is, if one considers the costs of lawsuits by builders. We need to be proactive and have our zoning rules compatible with the 2010 law.
Thank you for the good work of our Planning Board — Evelyn Auger, Don Bormes, Carmine Cioffi, alternate Will Ellis, and Dick Gardner.
On our Town Warrant is Article 14, giving Sanbornton voters at Town Meeting a chance to speak against large sums of outside money affecting our elections. Forty-seven New Hampshire towns voted for this in their March meetings. If we pass it, we'd ask our selectmen to notify our state and federal legislators and our president that we want a constitutional amendment that recognizes corporations are not people and their extreme, available wealth poured into our elections to influence them is unacceptable. Koch brothers beware, in other words.
This may not seem a money issue, but it is, if one considers that spending priorities in D.C. can be snatched by corporations for their benefit, while the people's needs go unmet. Spending priorities in D.C. can be a matter of special consideration given to the high-rolling funders of our election ads and costs.
Lynn Rudmin Chong
Last Updated on Monday, 05 May 2014 09:02
To The Daily Sun,
Gov. Maggie Hassan has chosen the most extreme person she could to nominate for the state Board of Education. Bill Duncan, a self-proclaimed expert whose only credentials in education are that he created a blog where he regularly misinforms his readers by providing heavily redacted snippets of sentences of his opponents and then comments on them. He is far from an expert on education or children. In point of fact he can be accurately labeled as the biggest current enemy to a particular class of New Hampshire children. That class of children are the most vulnerable — the children who come from families whose income falls below three times the federal poverty line.
Bill Duncan is the plaintiff (meaning he personally engaged attorneys and filed suit against the state) in an on-going lawsuit against these very children, claiming that they should not be allowed to attend any other school but the one assigned to them by ZIP code. His attorneys have fought hard to stop these children from accepting donated money that would allow them to attend a school better suited to them (even if that school is a different public school, believe it or not).
This is the kind of man Maggie Hassan says New Hampshire children need as their advocate on the Board of Education? Are you kidding me? Gov. Hassan couldn't possibly have made a worse choice than nominating a man currently suing the state to prevent parents of modest means from helping their children escape a school setting that is not meeting their needs. An awful choice, Ms. Hassan. Just awful.
Let your executive councilor know. Stop this nomination.
Last Updated on Monday, 05 May 2014 08:57
To The Daily Sun,
I would like to respond to a letter in The Daily Sun on May 3. I am a member of the Sanbornton Planning Board. But this letter is not sent representing the board. I am speaking only for myself.
I am the board member who read about the two recent court cases regarding workforce housing, including the quoted comments of an attorney in one of the cases, which recommended what developers should do when they come before a Planning Board. This was not pre-planned by the board, nor had I told them I was going to read it, and I do not know if they felt I should or should not have read it. I did not mean it to be a "scare tactic," nor do I think it was.
The importance of the court cases is that if the developer wins — and in these two current cases they both did — the "builders remedy" may be granted, as it was in one of the two. In the other they were given 60 days to change some ordinances, or the court would make the entire Zoning Ordinances void.
The meeting was to share the Planning Board's information regarding workforce housing and the facts I read were to make folks aware that being taken to court as these two towns were, was what our board was trying to avoid. These are facts, and for any Planning Board not to make voters aware of this risk would, I believe, be keeping important information from them.
The letter speaks of the irony of the Planning Board not knowing if the town of Sanbornton already complies (fair share) and "they won't know until the time comes to prove it." The greater irony is that because of the way the state's workforce housing law is written that is true. We could put the time into a study, trying to determine what we think is the town's "fair share" of such housing. However, the state which requires "fair share" has no number available stating what our "fair share" is. There is no board, office, commission or entity to take our "fair share" figures to until we are sued. We can then take our numbers to the judge and he/she will determine if the number is acceptable.
Although the members of our board at times do not all agree on an issue, there is one thing I believe every member does agree on. We all want our town to retain its rural character, and we all — audience and board — want what is best for Sanbornton.
Years ago when we lost a large number of our population to the industrial cities, we based our town planning on what was left to us, a rural community. Now we are faced with a set of state laws that don't fit well into our established ordinances. We, the voters of Sanbornton, have to decide what changes we find acceptable and how much risk we are willing to take as we make these decisions.
I hope everyone will go and vote on the Planning Boards amendments, whether you are for or against workforce housing. And let's not let this issue that was forced upon us, divide the town. No matter what wins or fails today, we all need to keep our community strong and friendly for tomorrow.
Last Updated on Monday, 05 May 2014 08:54