To the Editor:
To those who have been to the town hearings or read the front page of The Lincoln County News concerning the upcoming vote.
If you read the article you would think this is just an issue with Goose Hill Road, but this article is laying the precedents for much more.
I am a resident of the Valley Road. This spring the town started marking the roadway for ditching. This ditch would run across our now front lawn. We went to the town meeting on this proposal. It was brought up that the Town thought the Valley Road was a four rod-road (it is not), and they needed to ditch where in the history of the road there has never been a ditch.
When complaints arose from their request, we were told at that meeting that there was a similar issue with the Goose Hill Road that was going to be put to the voters this November. The Valley Road project was dropped pending the outcome of the November vote.
When discussed at that time, the ballot question was going to go to the voters to let the town take the road as three rod-road or let it be returned to abutting landowners for upkeep. They have since changed the wording, they still want to make it a three rod-road, but we were told if it doesn’t pass nothing will change, though it will hinder future work to the road.
My point is that, it is not just a Goose Hill Road issue, it may not just be a Valley Road issue either. If this vote passes, you are laying the groundwork for the town selectmen to further take these easements for other roadways.
I am all in favor of maintaining the roads with appropriate ditching and cutting of brush to keep the ice and water from building up. The town already has the right to do this, but by giving them the easement they are requesting, you are giving them the right to do what they deem necessary on your property, and they may or may not have your interest at heart.
This may seem petty to some, and to some you just don’t care because it doesn’t affect you, but for those like myself, who live in an acre of land with our house sitting very close to the roadway as it is, this easement would mean we lose what little front lawn we have to a ditch that in the history of the road was never necessary, and you can’t tell me that wouldn’t have adverse effects of the use of our property, as well as the market value of the property.
As you go to the polls this November, don’t just pass this by because it seems pointless, or that you feel it doesn’t concern or affect you. The easements may not affect your property, but as taxpayers, every time the town sends out notices to the landowners, or Attorney Bragg is called for a phone conference, or is at a meeting while they are trying to pursue this issue, it does affect you.
Natasha Brilyea, Jefferson