To the editor: Hudkins sees self as ‘independent centrist’ who gives sleigh rides

Peter Hudkins here. I was having my coffee this morning before going to do my barn chores, waiting for the wood stove to get going before I left, when I read the article in The Telegraph. Although my name was not in the article it was in the flyer for the Republican “Meet the Candidates” event. When I read my name, I was indeed surprised. They could have at least told me first, but that is water under the bridge.

To clarify, I think of myself is an “Independent Centrist” and a “Financial Conservative.” There was once the description of a “Blue Dog Democrat” but the current tribal issue of the parties has made them disappear. Last year two people talked to me about running for the Select Board, one was a popular Democrat leader in town and the other was Roy Spaulding.

Now that I am back from chores (as I do some of my best thinking in the barn) I am going to tell a couple of stories. My father is my example. He was for many years involved with many town and school volunteer positions and was best known for decades as town Auditor. To tell the truth, in all the years that I had with him, I did not know if he had any party affiliations, he did what he thought was best for the town and not his needs. He was a great role model and a very compassionate financial conservative. An example of this is on my 17th birthday I got two front tires for his tractor. At the time I did not appreciate the gift. It took a decade to become the lesson that it was intended. I can still remember him, as an auditor with Walter Brooks and Palmer Goodrich Sr. correcting the town budget from the floor at town meeting. It was in a downward direction. This was not an example of partisan politics. It is the path that I am following, of doing my best to help manage Chester. I have also learned that I need more porch furniture as I welcome anyone to come on up and talk to me. Listening is a big part of who I am. I believe a budget surplus should be returned to the taxpayers. I have a long record serving the town of Chester that anyone can look at from the Budget and Armory Committees, on the Board of Adjustment, the Development Review Board and the Planning Board.

So, I find myself to be an Independent candidate endorsed by the Republican Party. I may not make it to the meeting as I have sleigh rides scheduled on the farm to give on Sunday. I will be at the Chester Winter Carnival giving horse drawn sleigh rides. The Suffolks — Clark and Freel — will be there with their bells on. Now I am burning day light here and need to get back to work.

Peter Hudkins

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