Opinion: Select Board right to cancel bike path

Jan 9, 2023

Jan. 5, 2023

To the Editor:

Thank you to our Select Board for cancelling the proposed Minot Avenue bike path in the name of financial accountability.

At a time when our critical infrastructure is failing (sewers, roads etc.) putting our limited financial resources into a “nice to have” project just doesn’t make sense.  

Towards this end, I for one would like to see a formal schedule for the repaving and maintenance of our public roads. They are deplorable.

I’ve asked municipal maintenance about this issue and was told that they address as funds are available.

Roadway maintenance needs to be a formal budgeted commitment. Patching is simply a Band-Aid on a larger issue. We should also be asking ourselves if municipal maintenance is up to the task.

I’m reading that the proposed updating of Bayview Park will be a municipal maintenance project. Ditto for last years building of the new parking lot outside Onset Center.

It seems apparent that we keep piling new projects at their doorstep at the expense of current maintenance. The new parking area could have remained grass and the materials used elsewhere to maintain what we have.

Yes, I know there is grant money to every project but the manpower is still a very real cost. Almost two years ago the town voted to eliminate some of the conservation constraints on municipal maintenance to allow them to properly maintain our waterfront areas. At the time, the focus was on Onset Bluffs. To date nothing has been done. Dead and illegally cut trees line the landscape. There has been no pruning or other upkeep other than occasional grass trimming.

I’d like to hear the Selectmen weigh in here. Before we take on any new commitments, let’s make sure we properly maintain what we have.

Neil Sullivan