It's Tuesday June 18, 2013
News From The Village Updated Almost Daily
May 17, 2012
The town and all of us have placed the burden of providing public restrooms on the shoulders of private businesses in the village for way too long. We continue to want to provide more “free” docks and access from our waterfront, to promote activities aimed at bringing tourist into town, but we have done nothing to provide the basic necessities that these visitors require.
It is about time we took the steps to provide bathrooms and possibly a much needed pump out station and not depend on local merchants to do this for us. Value is not always measured in dollars…Why can’t this land swap be looked at as a “win win” for both sides?
To the Editor:
(From a letter sent to the Oriental Town Board.)
Dear Mayor Sage and Town Commissioners:
I won’t be able to be at tomorrow’s (5/8/12) Board Meeting since I’ll be extolling the virtues of Oriental to some 76 folks coming in on this week’s cruise ship.
Some of those virtues include the Town’s dependence on volunteers and its citizens for advice and hard work to supplement our hard working, but small in number, Town staff. Other virtues are its low crime, its support for small businesses and entrepeneurs, and consideration of the wants and needs of individual resident tax payers, to name a few.
The giveaway of Town Property in an uneven “swap” does not fit in with historic values. I worked through several years researching deeds and the history of South Avenue and its neighborhood for Attorney Scott Davis. My volunteer hours saved Scott and the Town money and resources, since well before we went to court, Scott had been preparing a case. I believed in the Town’s ownership and rights and supported our law suit although I resented the expenses necessary to prove that the Town places a high value on preserving the end of a Town street.
I am not sure how the “swap” came about, or why, but for every reason, including costs and usability and aesthetics, I am opposed to the plan as now proposed. I see no value to the citizens of Oriental in the proposal.
Thank you for your consideration.
Grace B. Evans
To the Editor:
(From a letter sent to the Oriental Town Manager and Town Board.)
I believe there are some serious legal issues with the action taken (or not taken) by the Town to date.
Just as importantly, there is NO SUPPORT for this transaction outside of the Town Manager, Mayor and the Board of Commissioners (and, of course, Mr Fulcher). As stewards of the Town’s public assets, it would be a mistake to approve a swap with anyone on the terms that have been discussed to date.
Chris Fulcher is not at fault here. The Town has failed to negotiate responsibly and thereby failed to receive terms that are fair and appropriate.
The most enduring argument I hear from elected officials and the Town Manager is that the right of way is not worth anything. That is, quite simply, a false statement. There are many ways to measure and calculate value, but one clear measure is the fact that the Town spent at least $25,000 defending its property rights to the South Avenue right of way. If the right of way had no value, why did the Town spend so much to defend its rights?
In any negotiation, the value of what is being exchanged can be measured by the value to the seller, but also the value to the purchaser. It may not be a perfect equation, but it carries (or it should carry) significant weight in the negotiation.
Before any action is taken, there should be a full and complete public accounting of the benefits and costs of this deal. Hard facts, not “intangibles”.
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