Proud And Dismayed

propane tanks
I used to be proud of my town. It spend close to $280,000 in legal fees (derived largely from my and others’ tax fees) to stop a propane facility directly above the aquifer water source that serves my part of town.

The lawsuit for this happening went from state level wherein protection of community, our water supply, our neighborhoods, our elementary school near to proposed facility and so much more took precedent. This case went to the MA Supreme Court and we won in our bid every single time for our town, especially since the proposed facility was near an elementary school. (How could the kids be removed in an emergency?)

Then it went to the federal level of government. The US transportation board dismissed the case in that commerce interests always wins against any other claim.

So on Saturday (1/20/18), we had a new whistle sound to train us in my town. It is is a continuous eerie sound. It roughly means get in your car and get the hell out of the region. Fly away as fast as you can do so.

Forget your home. Forget everything. Just save yourself. Get away as far as you can from the blast site. Pick roads and go out fast. Leave your home and everything behind.

As part of the town’s emergency operations plan, Grafton Fire Station #2 in North Grafton will siren to notify residents to evacuate the area. The siren tone will be different from that used for fire calls. The town will test the evacuation siren on Saturday, Jan. 20 at noon. During the test, you will hear a loud, steady wail for about …

Now there’s more. I watched a house being built on a small plot of land a few blocks away from mine location. The land size was too small for a single house according to current laws and so it was grandfathered into the site using a single board from the old house to set the new one in site. Then the board was removed since there were rules set up in my town about the amount of acreage needed to build a house.

Now I want to know that, even if arcane laws are involved, about how my town’s zoning board is allowing apartment buildings in my part of town. I want to know about the reason that land up for sale is not protected by laws that are longstanding that forced the people building the house on the small plot of land to use grandfather laws.

Why aren’t the people making zoning laws (even based on old ones) limiting population growth in the way that was applied to this old home being rebuilt?

Now I do understand that the propane madness is on a federal level. However, I expect my town to serve our common interests and I don’t see t happening at the current moment.

What are we going to get when Art B. sells his hot dog stand property since his children don’t want it to run it? Are we to get a high-rise with 300 apartments in place? How about a mini-mall?

Art Braddish Stand – Temp. CLOSED – 28 Reviews – Burgers – 39 … › Restaurants › Burgers
Rating: 4 – ‎28 reviews – ‎Price range: Under $10

28 reviews of Art Braddish Stand – Temp. CLOSED “This place is a wonderful New England hot dog stand! The food is really good and I like that they have lots of picnic tables to sit at. I would give it 5 stars but the place is in dire need of a…

Rating: 4.7 – ‎64 votes

June 29, 2017. I came here yesterday for my first time ever and was extremely pleased. I will most certainly be back, and pictures of my long chili dog have all my friends wanting to go. Gail Sanders. · June 2, 2017. Onion strings are to die for. Foot long hot dogs are flavorful and thank you for grilling the roll. Mom and I …

Laws are supposed to serve people. They are supposed to create betterment.

I do not see it happening at present for the most part. Shame on my town. Shame on the zoning board for wringing hands and letting destruction happen instead of being proactive to  fight to serve best interests for our town’s communities and neighborhoods.

Shame on them. It puts too much burden on us — people who live in these environs and want to protect them from overgrowth and hyper-development.

Why do we have to protect ourselves from our town when it should be the other way around?

Sally Dugman is a writer in MA, USA.


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