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As erroneously reported, the paving of the bottom 900 feet of Cider Hill Road did not pass the Warren Select Board. As Andrew Cunningham, chair of the select board, is a resident of Cider Hill and felt there was a conflict of interest, he abstained from voting on the matter. If he had voted, the motion would have passed, but it was a deadlock. In a deadlock situation the motion was voted down.
This was my first encounter with the Warren Select Board and I was alarmed to find that a motion can be passed or denied without adequate research by its members. It brought these questions to mind:
How on earth can a decision be made on an area, especially involving taxpayers’ money, with significant savings involved, without admittedly setting foot on the area to be decided upon? Making a decision for the taxpayer without proper research is not working for the people and their wishes, it is an opinion and a private agenda and should not, under any circumstances, be considered and tolerated!
With this lack of research how can the professional recommendation of the road foreman be discounted; he who has many years of experience in the field, experiences this type of work on a daily basis, sees the pros and cons of the specific situation from years of experience, especially on the specific site?
Of the residents of Cider Hill polled, the majority of respondents were highly in favor of the road improvement, and they did not get any consideration. How can private agenda override the wishes of the people who live on Cider Hill, travel it on a daily basis and pay their taxes to have the road fixed?
Was the big picture considered? What is it going to cost down the road? Paving this now will save the taxpayers’ money by doing this now when the East Warren Road paving is being done due to sheer volume of material needed. In the future, with rising costs and being a smaller project, the taxpayer will pay more. It will continue to be a problem.
It seems to me that in all areas this is a good thing for the community, the majority of the respondents want this project, the road foreman and road crew are in favor of this project, and completing this project now will save the taxpayers’ money and protect the environment and the road itself from further damage.
I feel that the select board needs to revisit this matter, re-examine or examine for the first time the damage created over the years that needs to be addressed.
Tierney lives in Warren.