To the editor: Tomasso purchase not in Chester’s best interests

I am writing this letter on behalf of the concerned residents of Lovers Lane. The condescending and disingenuous tone that the Town of Chester is taking in regard to the proposed purchase of the Tomasso property is both alarming and insulting. So, let’s cut through the bull!

While the backers and proponents of this idea would have you believe that this is in the town and the community’s best interests, let me assure you that it is not.

First, there is the price of the property. The nearly 2,000-acre tract of land currently owned by the Tomasso family is on the market for around $3 million. The question we need to be asking our Select Board members is how can it be that this purchase is financially responsible? Another question we must ask our Select Board is: When did it become the business of the town to actively seek financial backing to acquire private property.

While some in our community foam at the mouth at the chance to desecrate a small part of the natural world, I find the boldface attempt by the Select Board and its external moneyed interests to deceive and obfuscate their true intentions sickening. The property in question has vast resources for both timber extraction and wind turbine construction. The residents of Chester need to dispel the notion that these private entities have nothing but altruistic motives in their hearts heroically riding in to save the day when in fact they are clearly motivated by material gains.

Despite the claims made by proponents of this purchase, lauding the benefits and supposed positive outcomes, the reality is this: Lovers Lane cannot sustain additional traffic. Lovers Lane is a one-lane, narrow, winding dirt road that requires the driver’s full attention and often should not be driven on by the inexperienced.

Additionally, anyone who sees this as a way of preserving the natural state of the forest should take note that by opening this land up to be torn apart by mountain bikes and inconsiderate tourists, not to mention possible logging or wind programs, will destroy this habitat.

Most importantly we must ask ourselves what the true motivations of the Select Board and its moneyed interests are. When the Select Board and its cronies are willing to honestly listen to the legitimate concerns of the residents of this community, perhaps we can consider their fantasies.

Henry Dent
Lovers Lane

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  1. Henry Dent says:

    In response Kathleen Mysliwiec,

    As a 25 year old, “it disgusts me” that someone would exploit the suffering caused by the opioid crisis to make a political point. I’m glad the suffering of many serves your agenda. These heroin addicts, as you call them, are not being shipped in by some nefarious entity. They are people who have lived here all their lives who have watched their opportunities disappear and our communities become little more than playgrounds for the wealthy.

    Yes, let’s open our town to be bled dry by corporate interests and while we’re at it, why don’t we let our infrastructure rot away so the elementary school can flood? “What a great idea!”

    Let’s have the Select Board jump in bed with the Northern Forest Center who lists The TransCanada Corp. (the company behind Keystone XL pipeline ) as a 10-year financial donor. This is called real life. It is filled with real problems and no community forest is going to solve them no matter how warm and fuzzy it makes you feel inside.

    Shame on you Kathleen Mysliwiec. Shame on your privileged worldview and shame on your willful blindness toward those less fortunate than yourself.

  2. Kathleen Mysliwiec says:

    Yes, let’s just continue bringing in heroin addicts to our town whom are on welfare, food stamps, Section 8 and don’t pay taxes. Instead of opening a beautiful recreation area in the woods for hikers, young adults and tourists. What a great idea!

    As a 25 year old, it disgusts me seeing an older man completely against something that will help our town and youth become alive. You seem to have wrote this because you will be upset about the traffic on the road you live on. This is called life. You buy property and you don’t know who is going to buy the place next to you. It could be a car dealership who destroys your mountain view, or it can be anything really. This is what you want not some developer buying this property.

    What a joke this letter is. Shame on you.

  3. Kathy Vize says:

    Where may I find minutes from this meeting, along with any visuals (maps, powerpoint, etc.) that were presented at the meeting?

    When is the next meeting?

    Who or what entities, outside of the Select Board, has an interest in the property?

    Thank you.

  4. Larry Semones says:

    Wow, just wow. That’s my reaction to this letter after attending the first informational meeting last Thursday. I found the meeting both well presented and as indicated informative. It is with surprise that I read of ulterior motives and resisting citizens. I hope if someone has info of ulterior motives they will be brought forward in public forum. Maybe I will become a resistor too. I would encourage all concerned Chester citizens to attend the next meeting. If there is evidence of ulterior motives let’s get it out to all. Otherwise let’s continue exploration and discussion in hopes of finding out if it is the will of the citizens.

  5. Barre Pinske says:

    The reality is there is more than one way to access the property. It is a beautiful piece of land that could be preserved plus bring financial gain to the community what is wrong with that? Our Country was built on its natural resources why does that have to stop now? It would be nice for the town to have something to hang it’s hat on such as large preserved natural area. It could also be sold to a developer what might that look like?

  6. Lee Gustafson says:

    HI Henry, I would love the opportunity to discuss this issue with you sometime face to face. As I stated yesterday at the informational meeting, our intent at this time as the Select Board is to hear from the residents of Chester regarding potential purchase of the property. From your letter to the editor, it seems that you feel pretty strongly that the Board has ulterior motives regarding the potential purchase of the site, and I would appreciate an opportunity to hear your views on it and why you feel as you do. Thanks!