March 25, 2009: Shandaken decision seems ironic
To The Editor:
This letter is in response to the recent pubic hearing on farm stand regulations in the Town of Shandaken. I had requested the opportunity to speak at this public hearing. I thought that was the purpose of the hearing, but was denied by Supervisor DiSclafani because the hearing was taking more time than had been allotted. I wonder if one of the supervisor’s “advisors” had requested to speak if they would have been permitted to do so? That is another issue for another time.
My question to the town board’s representative on the Economic Development Committee, Doris Bartlett, was if this committee, organized to promote economic development had reviewed the proposed farm stand law? At the end of the regular board meeting Ms. Bartlett informed me that her committee had not. I would think that if the expressed purpose of this committee is to promote economic growth within the Town of Shandaken they would have carefully studied these proposed laws to see if indeed they would advance economic opportunity. It seems to me limiting the hours of operation, the time of year they can be open and when a business may keep their lights on certainly is not something the Economic Development Committee should be supporting by taking no stance on the proposal or not even discussing it for that matter.
If I recall correctly, before the last election for two positions for town council and supervisor each of those candidates, who were ultimately elected, campaigned for increasing the economic base of Shandaken by promoting new businesses along the Route 28 corridor. Seems ironic that by passing the new Farm Stand Regulations they will be discouraging future economic growth and possibly forcing the closing of one of the few thriving businesses on Route 28 that now provides a valuable service to town residents. (Doris Bartlett can’t be blamed for not following through on campaign promises, she wasn’t even elected but rather appointed by the majority of the current town board.)
Rather than spending time and taxpayer money (attorney fees) to impose limits on services to our citizens the supervisor and council people should be trying to increase the tax base and provide more needed services such as addressing cell phone service, senior citizen needs, affordable sewer system for Phoenicia, and full cable TV service as promised by provider Time Warner.