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Letters to the Editor 2-4-16, The Lakeville Journal

Inaccuracies regarding transfer station

I am writing to correct inaccuracies regarding the proposed Salisbury-Sharon Transfer station in Howard Randall’s letter to the Lakeville Journal on Jan. 28. It is incorrect that public parking is on a hill. There is no hill. It will be a paved, flat parking lot much like any lot found at a shopping center. Regarding the “shopping carts,” no one is required to use wheeled containers that may be made available to transfer station users. I suspect most people will just lug their garbage and recyclables as they always have. The idea for wheeled carts came from public concerns about the elderly and those with mobility issues. The flat paved parking lot makes this option possible.

The solid waste, single stream and materials containers will all have flat roof canopies covering them. These covers are larger than the dimensions of the containers and will keep out the vast majority of rain and snow. Currently, we have no covers at all. These proposed covers for the new station will be a huge improvement and more than adequate. 

Pedestrians will be very safe. The traffic flow has motorists moving forward, with minimal backing up. The solid waste hoppers are located to keep commercial haulers and the general public separate as they discard their trash. This is a vast improvement from the existing station. 

In regards to the cost, we have some good news: The USDA has offered Salisbury and Sharon an 18 percent grant toward the cost of the project. That is over $343,000 per town off the bottom line. This is money that does not have to be paid back. Additionally, the USDA will loan the towns the balance of the cost at an interest rate of 1.87 percent for up to 40 years with no prepayment penalty. The Transfer Station Building Committee and Anchor Engineering are still looking for more savings, including a less expensive concrete option for the retaining walls, and both towns have applied for state STEAP grants as well. 

Let’s be clear: Howard Randall’s concept is not “Plan B.” It was reviewed extensively by the building committee and Anchor Engineering and found not to be a viable option. 

The current transfer station design has been successful and well run. It is now out of space and running out of time. The new transfer station plan keeps the best of the existing operation with enhanced safety, efficiency and longevity while being adaptable to future needs. 

Detailed plans are available at Salisbury and Sharon Town Halls. Please take a look. A vote is coming up soon, and I hope you will support it. 

Dale Jones

Selectman, town of Sharon, and member Transfer Station Building Committee

Sharon


 

Willis acts on opioid overdose

No one has the slightest doubt that substance abuse, especially prescription drug overdose, has become one of the leading causes of physical and mental ill health and even death across America, including northwest Connecticut. The old recipe of simply arresting and warehousing those suffering from drug addition has been a total failure. At last someone has stepped forward to deal with the underlying causes and to regulate practices leading to substance abuse.

State Rep. Roberta Willis is proposing serious new legislation to control availability and access to prescription opioids and to make counseling, training and life-saving medicines available to counteract the sad explosion of opioid overdose among our young people. 

Roberta’s initiative is a sensible, responsible solution to a problem that has up to now resisted resolution.

Liz Piel

Sharon