Friday, April 13, 2001
Morrison seeking reelection
To the Editor:
I am running to be re-elected to a second three-year term on the Carlisle School Committee for three reasons. First, I've tremendously enjoyed serving on the school committee during the past three years. It has nearly always been interesting; it is fun more often than you might imagine; it sometimes gets your blood pumping, but it always, always, always gives me a wonderful feeling about our school taken as a whole. Being on the school committee brings me into contact and allows me to work with some of the most interesting, energetic, creative, and thoughtful people in town. It's great. So I would like the voters to do me a favor and let me keep getting this kick.
Second, the school is very important to our community. I have been allowed the privilege of working to make a contribution to an important piece of "Carlisle town business." I hope the voters feel that my efforts have been worthwhile. There are many opportunities to engage in the community's workthis is the engagement I have enjoyed for the past three years. I would like to continue.
Third, I've learned a lot about how the school's activities and budget fit in with other town groups and it seems a pity to waste that knowledge. In particular, the school and the town together face major challenges in the immediate future. Carlisle faces the possibility of needing to build a second school facility in the next few years. I believe that I can contribute to the discussions and decisions we, as a town, need to make about these challenges, and I hope that I'll do so as a member of the school committee. Thank you.
Demolition not a tragedy
To the Editor:
I'm writing because I was insulted and offended by Ms. Granger's letter in last week's paper. As an American, I hold my personal freedom most dear, my freedom to engage in the type of work I choose and my freedom to live how and where I want. Ms. Granger seems to have no regard for either one of these.
Her beef regards the demolition of a small ranch on Stearns Street. Why would anyone care about this house except possibly the former owner who chose to sell it to a developer, as is his right to do? The developer didn't swindle anyone out of a house. He is not using the land irresponsibly. The guy is trying to make a living and in the process he's putting up a beautiful new house. What's wrong with that?
There are plenty of examples of responsible development in this town. Look at the eyesore that was recently replaced near the post office. A dilapidated church with a huge parking lot was recently replaced with a lovely home. I guess Ms. Granger will consider the family that moves in "status-hungry newcomers."
Ms. Granger also seems to have something against real estate agents. A real estate agent sold me my house on Stearns Street, an old house that I chose to keep rather than replacemy choice. The real estate agents in this town are not villains. They do an excellent job of matching seller and buyer needsand they have a right to be paid to do that.
I moved from Westford because I didn't like the development going on in that town, massive cluster housing developments putting extreme stress on town infrastructure. I'm supportive of Carlisle's efforts at responsible development. But let's not get ridiculous. The demolition of the house on Stearns Street is not a sad occurrence.
Suggestions for an imperfect world
To the Editor:
Three pieces on the changing Carlisle in the March 30 issue caught my attention. Mr. Wayland's moving Forum article, Ms. Armistead's thoughtful piece and Ms. Granger's letter. The first two pieces express the human aspects of change absent in the letter. The decision to sell a home of over 25 years is always difficult and often painful. To say "Goodbye, little house" (Mr. Wayland) is no easy thing.
Ms. Granger's suggestion not to care for properties in our neighborhood is insulting to those near me who have all improved and enlarged their homes in the last few years. These homes are not "sharecroppers' shacks" (Ms. Granger) by any comparison.
As for the future of Carlisle, I, too, do not understand the need for "mega homes" (Mr. Wayland). Carlisle did not change on Stearns Street. It has already changed. We all know children of Carlisle and town employees cannot afford to buy and families are forced to leave because of ever-rising taxes. We must plan more places like our tastefully-done neighbors at Malcom Meadows. If not, we may get "projects" (Ms. Granger).
With time, money and planning, smaller homes could be moved and sold by lottery to town natives and workers. A type of assistance could be offered to elders for repairs. The town could start a program of service to the town for those over 60 to receive an abatement on taxes for hours spent sharing their talents in town programs, perhaps with children in recreation commission programs. Town imposed restrictions placed on the sale of smaller homes would be unfair as a large part of a family's asset is home equity.
I hope newcomers to our beautiful Carlisle will have the love, concern and sensitivity of Ms. Armistead. We gain nothing by moaning and raging. The difficult issues must be faced in the real world. To paraphrase her, "we can love and protect Carlisle while considering the needs of its people as well." I'm sure she will be at Town Meeting. Will you?
Mary Ellen Markey
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