You may have heard of a small group of individuals in NK who are promoting an enormously wasteful new construction project being sold to the citizens of NK as the “Save Our Town Hall” initiative.
Whereas, I must admit, this is certainly clever, it is disingenuous and misleading, at best. At worst, it is something much more damaging, for its basis is simply not true. My grave concern is that many voters will go to the polls on Nov. 5 thinking they need to vote yes on Question #1 to literally Save Our Town Hall.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
The bond to restore and renovate the Town Hall has already been approved by voters.
Last November, the voters of NK most generously approved a $27,000,000 bond, for which $5,000,000 was specifically designated for the “renovation and restoration of Town Hall.” The DBVW Town Hall Feasibility Study shows that this is more than enough to satisfy the requirements related to renovation and restoration of Town Hall.
So why another bond for $7,500,000? Well, because now we are talking about NEW construction. The truth is, this huge amount of additional funding is not needed, nor is there any relation between this new debt and the purported honorable pursuit of historical preservation.
Lastly, I want to point out that approval of this new construction project, will require additional parking that can only be obtained by moving Memorial Park.
I’ve not seen an acceptable plan that incorporates the dignity and respect that our veterans deserve, nor do I envision that there is one. Memorial Park is not simply a collection of stone markers, it is also about a proper place that allows for the reflection upon what our brave men and women of this community have sacrificed, and I don’t know of a more suitable place then where it currently resides.
I’ve noted throughout the last few years of conversation centering around the importance of NK’s historical legacy (as it relates to the Town Hall), that we’ve forgotten the importance of preserving the memory and legacy of our veterans. Memorial Park should not be treated as something that is “in the way.”
Ripping up and relocating Memorial Park, in my opinion, is absolutely unconscionable.
This upcoming special referendum is an opportunity for voters/taxpayers to have a direct and positive impact upon the preservation of a significant town landmark, to show our veterans that we value their sacrifice, but also to show the respect that is due our taxpayers, by being prudent with the way we spend our tax dollars.
On Nov. 5, I urge you to vote NO on Question #1.