STOPTHEPIT

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Unprecedented eloquence

At the first hearing on the 10th, when so many of us showed up and waited to speak, I was impressed by the patience and quiet dignity of the audience. It was a VERY long night, and all we heard was the presentation of the team of would-be pit mongers.

Last night, we got our chance to speak, and I was simply amazed at the intelligence and eloquence of our opposition movement. How many times have you seen people step up to the mike at a public hearing and then cringed at their inability to express themselves intelligently? But last night there was none of that, absolutely none at all. It was one speaker after another making excellent remarks and observations about all the aspects of the operation and aftermath of the proposed rape of the neighborhood. It is often said at long hearings, "everything has been said but not everyone has said it." Yet each of the dozens of speakers had a different take on the issue, and no two said the same thing.

Hats off to you all, band of eloquent pit bulls who will never let go, never allow this travesty to happen. We shall not be moved!

Dr. Phil, blogmeister

Thursday, October 26, 2006

"A long line formed before the podium..."

“When Planning & Zoning Commission Chair Joe McDonagh asked the packed Council Chambers (at the public hearing) last night if anyone wanted to speak in favor of a gravel-mining operation proposed for upper Whitney Avenue, no one budged. When he asked if anyone wanted to speak against the plan, which would excavate 254,000 cubic yards of sand and gravel over a two-year period, a sea of hands went up. And a long line formed before the podium.”*

The comments from the public last night were simply outstanding -- articulate; packed with information and thought; focused on the relevant issues; hitting all the issues, but not repetitious; respectful of the seriousness of the situation and of the task before the Commissioners, yet passionate. So many people during and after the hearing remarked on how impressed they were with the intelligence, clarity, and power of each and every statement. Thank you to everyone who spoke, and to everyone who has contributed so much time, thought, and effort to the many different aspects of this fight.

Next week: Attorney Keith Ainsworth presents the case against the Pit on behalf of the Mt. Carmel Environmental Trust. More comments from the developer. We look forward to seeing everyone there: Old Town Hall, 7 pm, Thursday, 11/2.

* from an article by Sharon Bass in the hamdendailynews.com. See full article, together with video footage from the hearing, at http://www.hamdendailynews.com

Monday, October 23, 2006

A message from Andy Brand of the Mt. Carmel Environmental Trust

It's time for the public to speak, and for your concerns to be heard! On Wednesday, October 25th, at 7 pm in the Old Town Hall, the public hearing on the gravel pit proposal will reopen and now it's your turn. As chair and vice chair of the Mount Carmel Environmental Trust*, my wife and I would like to thank you for your interest in this issue, and for the hard work many of you have put into fighting the pits. From signing petitions to putting up signs (I think I counted 25 on Monday) to attending planning meetings to gathering information for your comments at the hearing, you have helped to strengthen the case against the pits.

It's important to stress how this mining operation would affect us all. Some of you may live near the site, as we do. Many of us make frequent use of the Farmington Canal trail (my wife is out there twice a day). Certainly we all drive on Whitney Avenue regularly! And, almost all of us use the public water supply. We should not have to worry about noise and dust in our backyards, dangerous trucks crowding our streets, possible contamination of our water, and definite destruction of our town's natural resources and wetland habitat. It's time to put a stop to this proposed operation once and for all!

Again, thank you for all your work so far. We look forward to seeing you on Wednesday evening and joining our voices in protest.

Sincerely,
Andy Brand

* The Mount Carmel Environmental Trust was recently formed to protect and preserve the quality of life in the Mt. Carmel section of Hamden, CT.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Citizens Speak Out against the Pit

Here’s what citizens are saying about the gravel pit on the WTNH-Channel 8 blog:

Comment from: mick [Visitor]
From what I've seen, they're in a residential area. I don't care how many jobs it creates, you could put in a nuclear waste storage facility and it would create jobs. It doesn't fit with the character of the neighborhood. How much simpler can it be? Tell them to go dig somewhere else.
10/11/06 @ 18:30

Comment from: Jim [Visitor]
How can anyone say that they are going to return land to its natural state after they have stripped out some 250,000 cubic yards of it.
10/12/06 @ 09:10

Comment from: Michelle [Visitor]
There are so many problems with this application! The developer hasn't told or doesn't know where the trucks will go with the gravel, so he can't provide an accurate traffic study. He hasn't given specific information about test borings on the property, so no one really knows exactly how much sand is there--or when they'll hit bedrock!There are people living within just a few yards of where all the trucks will be refueling and idling, dumping diesel fumes all day long. And scariest of all, there are streams and wetlands throughout the property which lead right into our public water supply. How can we allow such drastic excavation work right in the middle of an aquifer? We can't!
10/12/06 @ 16:13

Comment from: Johnny [Visitor]
The owner of the property argues that he deserves "fair market value" in return for his investment. Since when is the public responsible for insuring private profit? But leaving that question aside, what would be fair market value? Say it's the value of building lots in the Mt. Carmel area, perhaps a total of three or four million dollars for his forty acres. Not the $30 to $40 million he hopes to make by turning those wooded acres into a devastated strip mine!
10/12/06 @ 19:36

Comment from: debbie [Visitor]
The gravel pit in Hamden is a VERY bad idea. Take a look at the area near SCSU where a similar gravel pit stood. The area surrounding this Mt Carmel/Cheshire/Wallingford corner is a residential area with restrictions to Sleeping Giant State park why should a gravel pit have any less restrictions? It is the last place anyone should be looking to set up a gravel pit. Leaving the area untouched is the ONLY solution. Once touched the land will never return to its natural state and either will the residents currently living in that area.
10/17/06 @ 13:33

Comment from: Ed Wilson [Visitor]
As a long-term resident, property owner, and voter in Mt. Carmel, I agree with most of our posters that this is highly inappropriate use of land so close to other residents and so far untouched by developers. 'Johnny' makes a point - 'fair market value' does not mean that the owner can squeeze every last cent of value out of the land at the expense of everyone else's quality of life. This greedy exploitation needs to be stopped now.10/17/06 @ 16:46

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

My husband and I have lived in the Mt. Carmel section of Hamden for four years and in Spring Glen for three years before that. Hamden has been a wonderful community to be a part of, and we have enjoyed all it has to offer. I work at Quinnipiac University, hike Sleeping Giant, and, most often, walk the trail that runs by our house. Louis is a runner and is on the trail most mornings. We are horrified at the prospect of a gravel pit, with its concomitant dust, noise, traffic, and destruction of property so close to the trail.

We have spent years improving our property which sits on the corner of River Rd. and Whitney. This will have a direct impact on our quality of life on an already busy and noisy intersection. We have always felt fully compensated by our proximity to the trail and enjoyed walking with our friends and out-of-town guests while they told us how lucky we were. I have a feeling that if that walk will now include a gravel pit, the reaction will not be as positive.

In addition to our love of the trail, we have a strong appreciation of the warmth and commitment of our neighbors to this community. Those who live closer to the proposed pit may leave, strongly affecting the stability of the neighborhood and property values. Many of the families we know have young children, and we cannot understand how the pit developers truly believe that leaving unguarded standing ponds of water, some fairly deep, is safe for curious children. I only hope that these developers and the property owner plan to hold themselves accountable should any child be hurt.

We have tolerated tax increases, car accidents and tire marks across our lawn, picked up beer bottles and other litter thrown from passing cars, and mowed the greenway by the road which is only mowed by the town twice a year as far as we can tell. We have always felt that our stewardship of the area was part of the price one pays for living in a beautiful but busy community. The gravel pit, however, is just beyond our ability to forgive.

Please register our strenuous objection to this horrendous proposal.

Janice Swiatek-Kelley and Louis F. D. Kelley
475 River Rd.
Hamden, CT 06518

Friday, October 13, 2006

The Nuts and Bolts of Sand and Gravel

I attended the Public Hearing on the 10th and was amazed at the exceptionally courteous behavior of fellow opponents of the Pit. Not that we aren't well behaved or civilized. But some of the items in the proposal and the analyses were so outrageous it was surprising that they did not cause more of an outcry (See the previous post for examples). Our discipline is our strength. Let's keep it up for the next session on the 25th.

Some of the details of a sand and gravel operation should be emphasized:

NOISE: From the moment operations begin in the morning until they end at night, one or more pieces of heavy machinery will crank up the diesel engines which will run all day long. This will create a constant drone and roar. In addition to this, a truck entering the property every six minutes will create its own diesel roar and at any given time there will be more than one truck on the site. The combination of trucks arriving, idling their engines, maneuvering, and leaving fully loaded will be added to the background din of the excavating equipment. Even this will be surpassed by the crash of gravel falling down onto the truck beds as they are loaded.

The fact that the developers requested the right to subject the neighborhood to this hellish roar from 7am to 5 pm six days a week and slightly fewer hours on Sundays shows their utter lack of regard for the living conditions of the surrounding community. The word "contempt" comes to mind. If they have no respect for us, can we trust anything they say or promise? Can we possibly believe in their Garden of Eden post-excavation artist's renditions when they are asking to drag us through hell to get there?

DIESEL, DIRT, & DUST: In addition to the particulate air pollution of several diesel engines running simultaneously can be added the constant cloud of dust kicked up by their tires as they move around the property. The developers like to talk about "clean, dust free sand."

Yeah, right. Just drive by the Tilcon facility on Route 17 in Durham and see the thick coat of dust on all of the surrounding vegetation if you need further convincing that the dustless gravel pit is a myth. But hey, green leaves are so pre-industrial, right?


AFTERMATH: After the developers take their $30 million and run, we will be left with four water filled pits with steep slopes not suitable for recreation and in fact outright dangerous. (Look closely at the angle of the banks of the gravel pit on the right. Do you want your small children playing around this?) Whether or not these "ponds" will be stagnant depends on their total volume versus the volume of inflowing water. Clearly there is not a large volume spring to replenish them and they will essentially become large breeding pools for mosquitoes, especially during the dry summer months. This means that for those who have not been driven out of the neighborhood by two years of noise and pollution the roar of diesel will be replaced by the buzz of unfriendly insects every time they step outside. (Unless you want to spray with insecticide all of the time.)

But we aren't going to let that happen! Our commitment, discipline, and passion will prevail. Be prepared for another long night on the 25th. Bring a friend. Bring popcorn! Let's make the next hearing a celebration our newfound neighborhood solidarity!

Phil Brewer, MD
Stopthepit Blogmeister

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

"So Many People Want to Speak on This Issue, the Town Will Continue Tonight's Meeting Oct. 25th"

We’re grateful to the media -- print, online, tv, and radio – for their extensive, clear, and vivid coverage of last night’s hearing before the Planning & Zoning Commission. And we’re grateful to all the people who came and listened, who signed petitions, and who are otherwise supporting our efforts to stop the gravel pit project in northern Hamden. Among the 240 people who attended last night were neighbors, state and town officials, members of various civic associations and advocacy organizations, and others – and we’re looking forward to hearing all of them present their ideas, information, and questions to the Commission at the next hearing on Wednesday, October 25.

Here are links to, and extracts from, some of the coverage of last night’s hearing:

Hamden Daily News (online) http://www.hamdendailynews.com/

“About 200 people crammed into Council Chambers, most wearing little yellow buttons with the words ‘Stop the Pit.’ A few wore more than one. There were not enough chairs. Some had to stand in the back and in the rotunda. Babies cried. Young children…stood by their parents….Neighbors expect the operation to be noisy and ruin precious land. Many trees will be killed and just a fraction replaced at the end of the day. Residents cite traffic problems with trucks going in and out six days a week. They worry about air pollution from diesel fumes and contaminants getting into the town’s drinking supply. Jepp and Willow brooks run through the land and eventually drain into the Mill River, which pours into Lake Whitney. ‘We’re very concerned about drinking water quality,’ said Curt Johnson, a senior attorney with the Connecticut Fund for the Environment.”

New Haven Register (you may need to register online (it's free)and then search the site for the article) http://www.nhregister.com/

“About 240 people — many wearing ‘Stop the Pit’ buttons — crammed into the Memorial Town Hall auditorium to oppose a two-year sand and gravel mining operation at 4280 and 4246 rear Whitney Ave.…It's the vehicles that will infiltrate their neighborhood for two years that have people upset. The plan says that excavating work would take place weekdays and Saturdays for two years and that 250,000 cubic yards of gravel and sand will be removed in 64 round trips of truck traffic daily.…(The developer’s attorney) said there would be a ‘minimal increase in traffic,’ a comment that got a rise out of the disbelieving crowd.”

WFSB/Channel 3 http://www.wfsb.com/news/1005333/detail.html/

“Residents packed Town Hall in Hamden Tuesday evening....The area is home to a bike path, wildlife and hundreds of homes.…’It's just going to be total chaos. They want to put a mining operation in the middle of a residential neighborhood,’ said John Morrison of the Spring Glen Civic Association.”

WTNH/Channel 8 http://www.wtnh.com/global/story.asp?s=5523590&ClientType=Printable/

“So many people want to speak on this issue, the town will continue tonight's meeting Oct. 25th.”

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

"People packed Hamden Town Hall to voice their concerns..."

More than two hundred people attended tonight's first installment of a public hearing on the proposed Whitney Avenue gravel pit. Sara Welch of WTNH-TV/Channel 8 was one of several television, radio, and print reporters who covered the hearing. Extracts from her report follow:

Heated debate over gravel pit plans in Hamden

"Stop the pit!" That's the battle cry from residents in one Hamden neighborhood
who are fighting a plan for a gravel pit....People packed Hamden Town Hall to
voice their concerns....The entrance along Route 10/Whitney Avenue is a major
concern. As many as 64-trucks a day would be coming and going from the site.
People also believe the project would forever alter the wetlands and ruin the
beauty of the Farmington canal green way that runs through the area....

"There are only three or four neighbors that are immediately impacted...," says Bob Wiedenmann, Sunwood Development....

The town's natural resources and open space commission (has) opposed the plan believing it will dramatically alter the environment and destroy wildlife in the area....

So many people want to speak on this issue, the town will continue tonight's meeting Oct. 25th.

The Issues at Hand:

Protect our region’s health and safety!
Speak out against the gravel pit!
Help us pack the hearing room at tonight’s hearing!
Write a letter to the Hamden PZC!

Please plan to attend a public hearing before
Hamden’s Planning and Zoning Commission
Tonight, Tues., 10/10, at 7 p.m.
At Hamden’s old Town Hall (corner of Dixwell & Whitney)
regarding the proposed creation of a
GRAVEL PIT – MINING OPERATION
at 4246 (rear) and 4280 Whitney Avenue, Hamden
(between Whitney Court and Bittersweet Lane)

Applicant proposes to remove 250,000 cubic yards of sand and gravel over two years. Approximately 64 round-trip truck trips per day from the site. Access will be via Whitney Avenue, both northbound and southbound. Application materials indicate that approximately 8 truckloads of fill will be removed every hour, 8 am–5 pm, for a minimum of 255 days.

Among our concerns:
health (dust and fumes; impact on public water supply);
noise (from excavation and trucks);
safety (increased traffic, including heavy trucks);
impact on area’s water supply, wetlands, vegetation;
harmony and appropriateness of site use in relation to the general area and adjacent properties (a gravel pit in a residential zone that includes four parks: Farmington Canal, Brooksvale, Christian Rendeiro Park, and Sleeping Giant)
nature and intensity of use (disturbance of over 15 acres of land; two years of heavy-duty trucking; increased traffic on Whitney Avenue).

Please attend to ask questions and express your views!
For more information, please contact Sarah and Gus at 248-8181
or Gail and Jim at 288-6648.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Gravel Pit Is Completely at Odds with Town Plan of Conservation and Development

Hamden’s zoning regulations state that, “in deciding whether or not to grant a Special Permit for the gravel pit, the Planning & Zoning Commission shall give consideration to, but not be limited by,” eight “threshold” points. The second of these points is how the gravel pit application complies with Hamden’s Plan of Conservation and Development. (See 9/24 posting below under “What Can I Do to Help?” for all 8 points.) Al Gorman highlights many inconsistencies between the gravel pit application and the Town Plan in his September 6 letter (see 9/28 posting below). Here are additional extracts from the Plan that underscore the inappropriateness of a large-scale, multi-year mining operation in northern Hamden:

From the HAMDEN PLAN OF CONSERVATION AND DEVELOPMENT (adopted 7/6/04; effective 9/1/04)

p. 6: VISION STATEMENT. From its humble beginning as part of the New Haven Colony in 1638 and later incorporation as a town in 1786 with a population of some 1,400 “souls,” Hamden has grown to become home to nearly 57,000 residents. Over this span of some 365 years, one characteristic has endured: its neighborhoods….These neighborhood communities still characterize the town and attract residents from the surrounding New Haven metropolitan area. They offer residents a mixture of housing types as well as shops, open spaces, schools and a sense of history. The preservation and enhancement of these neighborhoods is vital to preserving the quality of life in Hamden….

p. 25: ENVIRONMENTAL CONSIDERATIONS. The overall quality of life in a community is largely determined by the quality, quantity and distribution of its cultural and natural resources. The protection of Hamden’s natural resources is an important component to the Plan of Conservation and Development. This is because the protection of natural resources helps preserve the Town’s community character, preserves essential natural systems, and improves the quality of life for all of Hamden’s residents….

p. 124: AREA 6. North of the Mt. Carmel/West Woods/Whitney Avenue intersection becomes more rural with the eastern side of the corridor dominated by three major parcels – Sleeping Giant Park, Sleeping Giant Golf Course and the Regional Water Authority holdings around Clarke’s Pond….There are also several wetland areas as well as a west-to-east power line easement in the area. In general, this is a sensitive environmental area and should be treated as such.

p. 130: GOAL #6. From the West Woods Road/Whitney Avenue intersection to the Cheshire town line, protection of natural resources should be the paramount concern. OBJECTIVE: North of the West Woods Road/Whitney Avenue intersection, future land use should focus on low density development, NO EXTENSION OF NON-RESIDENTIAL USES (ed.'s emphasis), and natural resource protection.

p. 148: MAJOR PLAN GOALS. The overarching goals of this Plan of Conservation and Development are the preservation of the Town’s sound housing stock and stable neighborhoods; the regulation of in-fill development in keeping with the character and scale of surrounding neighborhoods and development; the preservation and enhancement of the Town’s open space and recreation areas,…and the support of quality of life improvements.

p. 150: Upper Whitney Conservation District. The policy for this area should be to prohibit non-residential development with a focus on continued natural resource protection as the northern gateway into Hamden.
• Land Uses should be compatible with the goal of beautifying Hamden and maintaining its natural beauty.
• Development proposals exceeding 100,000 square feet of commercial, industrial or retail use, should be subject to intensive analysis in terms of their economic, social, physical and environmental impact on the health, welfare and safety of the community.

p. 156: GOAL #1: Promote the conservation and preservation of natural resources as part of future development activity. Actions: Protect water quality through the protection of the Town’s watercourses wetlands and land within aquifer protection areas.

p. 159: GOAL #8: Provide a safe, attractive and well-maintained system of public roadways.

p. 160: GOAL #9: Support and foster programs that maintain the housing stock and enhance and preserve the fabric of existing neighborhoods.

p. 161: GOAL #10: Ensure that all residential areas and developments are attractive and well maintained places to live for Hamden’s residents.

p. 164: GOAL #19: … Highlight Hamden as a physically appealing place to do business.

p. 168: GOAL #25: From the West Woods Road/Whitney Avenue intersection to the Cheshire town line, protection of natural resources should be the paramount concern.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

HEARING: A suggestion

While canvassing the neighborhoods around the area of the proposed pit with Al Gorman today it was apparent that sentiment against the Pit is high and that turnout for the PZC hearing on tuesday will reflect the intensity of the opposition. I would like to suggest that everyone ask a neighbor to come with them. More than one senior expressed an interest but had no way to come because of not driving after dark, and people in this situation will need a ride. So, come to express your opinion, and bring someone with you!

The other thing that struck me was the number of people who just couldn't understand why the town can't just say no and be done with it. The fact is, the pro-pit forces are well financed, ably led, and under the law have a real chance of prevailing. Probably not at the hearing, but eventually in court if they lose again. That is why being very vocal and visible are so important. This will show both the owners and town officials that we mean business and will stick together for as long as it takes to prevail.

Remember, the request is for a special permit, not a routine one, and the default position for special permits is (or should be) denial. The burden of proof is on the developer to show why he should be granted an variance, and the more we organize and holler, the greater the burden that the opposition has to work with.

Dr. Phil Brewer

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Representative Adinolfi Opposes the Pit


Al Adinolfi, who represents the 103rd district (Cheshire, Hamden, and Wallingford) in the Connecticut House of Representatives, has boosted our efforts to oppose the pit by issuing this press release:

Adinolfi Opposes Proposed Gravel Pit

HARTFORD – State Representative Al Adinolfi (R-Cheshire) today expressed his opposition to a proposed sand and gravel pit near Route 10 in the northern section Hamden.

“The proposed gravel and sand operation by the Cheshire border in Hamden would have a serious impact on the area, and raises serious concerns,” said Adinolfi. “The impact to the environment, surrounding neighborhoods, and traffic would be quite detrimental to residents.”

The Sunwood Development Corporation has submitted a proposed special permit for sand and gravel mining at 4246 (rear) and 4280 Whitney Avenue. Under the proposal, the company would excavate 250,000 cubic yards of gravel and sand from the 40.4-acre site.

Late last month Hamden officials in conjunction with the Southwest Conservation District and the King’s Mark Resource Conservation and Development Council in developing an Environmental Review Team report on the project that gives details about the potential impact of the project. It can be viewed online at http://www.ctert.org/.

Adinolfi indicated that he had been in touch with the state Department of Transportation and the Department of Environmental Protection concerning the project and its potential negative impact.

“Area residents clearly don’t want a noisy mining operation taking place by their homes and in the neighborhood,” said Adinolfi. “I want to work to see that all of the potential concerns about this project are raised and made known, and I join with area officials who want to protect residents from this invasion into the peaceful surroundings of their community.”

Please support your Neighbors, Town and State Officials and come to the Public Hearing October 10th at 7pm, at the old Historic Hamden Town Hall Town Hall, 2372 Whitney Ave., Hamden, CT.
###

Rep. Adinolfi can be reached at 1-800-842-1423 (Capitol); 203-272-9701 (home).
Press Secretary Michael Downes: 1-860-240-0142

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Hamden’s Natural Resources Commission Opposes Pit Project

The Hamden commission charged with preserving the Town’s natural resources has written a Letter to the Editor stating their opposition to the gravel pit project and urging the Planning & Zoning Commission to deny the application “because of the negative impact the proposal shall have upon Hamden’s natural resources, open space, quality of wildlife habitat, as well as the well being of the public.” Here is their letter (boldface is blog editor’s):


September 28, 2006

Dear Editor:

The Natural Resources and Open Space Commission (NROSC) of the Town of Hamden, Connecticut is opposed to the proposed gravel mining operation proposed at 4246 Rear and 4280 Whitney Avenue, in the Town of Hamden. We urge the public to voice their opposition to the proposal at the Town’s Planning and Zoning Commission’s Public Hearing for the Special Permit, scheduled for October 10, 2006, 7:00 PM at Memorial Town Hall. We suggest the public confirm that the hearing will take place prior to attending with the Town’s Planning Office, or to submit written testimony to the Commission.

The proposed plan by the applicant calls for the removal of over 250,000 cubic yards of material. The site, in excess of 40 acres, contains numerous wetlands and is crossed by Jepp Brook and Willow Brook, tributaries for our public water supply. A highly successful open space and recreational resource of the Town, the Farmington Canal Rail Trail is immediately to the West of the project. Beyond the impact to the immediate area of the project site, including the natural habitat and private residences adjacent to the site, we believe the impact will extend beyond the borders of the immediate area, impacting the health, safety and welfare of the greater public.

The NROSC strongly urges the Planning and Zoning Commission to deny the application because of the negative impact the proposal shall have upon Hamden’s natural resources, open space, quality of wildlife habitat, as well as the well being of the public.

Sincerely,
Aris W. Stalis, Corresponding Secretary
Natural Resources and Open Space Commission, Town of Hamden, Connecticut
Hamden Government Center
2750 Dixwell Avenue Hamden, Connecticut 06518
Tel: (203)287-7100; Fax: (203)287-7101

A Candidate's Perspective on the Pit


Phil Brewer, a medical doctor and Democrat from Cheshire who is running for State Representative from the 103rd district (Hamden, Cheshire, and Wallingford), has written a Letter to the Editor expressing his views on the gravel pit project. The letter currently appears in the online publication Hamden Daily News under the heading “Gravelly travesty” (http://www.hamdendailynews.com/letter_editor.html) and is also reproduced below.


To the Editor:

The age-old battle between profiteers who want to make money without regard for local consequences and tax paying members of the local community who want to preserve their quality of life beginning with a healthy environment has come to a neighborhood near you, West Woods in Hamden.

A developer hired by distant land owners is attempting to obtain approval to turn part of a lovely neighborhood into a commercial gravel pit and to subsequently leave behind 10 acres of stagnant pond water which will breed mosquitoes and, because of the sharp angle of the slope into the water, will be a constant drowning hazard.

If the Hamden Planning & Zoning Commission, under the threat of a further legal action that began after the first application was turned down, approves this project, the landowners will take their money and run, or more accurately have it sent to them, while the neighborhood pays the true price for this travesty.

We have seen in New London how public opinion reacts when private developers use local government to trample on the rights of long-standing residents of the community. Eminent domain laws are being rewritten around the country as a result. We encourage the Planning & Zoning Commission to once again stand up for the rights and expectations of long-standing members of a residential community and to once again turn down this proposal as being inappropriate. After all, it's the right thing to do. For more information go to: http://stopthepit.blogspot.com/

Sincerely,
Phil Brewer,
Candidate for State Representative, 103rd District
Dr. Phil Brewer for Connecticut State Rep (103rd District) Cheshire - Hamden - Wallingford drphilbrewer.com