On the Right Lane: Right to the point

32

“Nothing is so embarrassing as watching someone do something that you said couldn’t be done.”

Sam Ewing, professional baseball player

I previously stated that the Nov. 13 Windham Town Council meeting would be contentious. Sorry, I was wrong to some degree. Although there are serious personal differences among the town councilors, there wasn’t the rumble in the jungle that I expected. I understand at least one councilor had a lot of not-so-nice things to say after the meeting. I guess that it is only a continuation of national politics as a whole, because in that scenario when one doesn’t get their way, they rant and scream loudly and hope that works in their favor.

I was pleasantly surprised by the number of citizens who got up and spoke during the meeting about too much development happening in Windham. There were some interesting comments and points made, and what was said was well-presented and level-headed. It appeared to me some of the town councilors grasped the views given, so I hope some day something will come of it. People, keep speaking!

Windham’s local access channel is something that has to be restructured immediately. It has had problems for years, which is something even I can’t explain. I attempted to watch the Nov. 13 meeting on Windham’s local access channel and there was no voice whatsoever. I switched over to the Windham website, which had another problem – strange sounds interfering with whatever the town councilors were attempting to speak about. Later, well, how do I put it, the sound just totally died. If the town can’t manage to fix these problems, I don’t want my tax dollars spent on this, period. It shouldn’t come as any surprise that Windham’s website looks and acts like it was created during the Dark Ages and if one doesn’t want to believe that, just look at the websites of other towns and cities, even in Maine.

It appears, if I am not mistaken, that Windham also has access to two other local access channels. Other communities are much more successful at having meaningful programs on their station(s) and with Windham now having a population around or over 18,000 people, where oh where do all our tax dollars go? It seems to me our community leaders should make it easy for citizens to create interesting and information programs that citizens would not only enjoy, but would love to take part in as well. This town is going to be under new management, so let’s see whether this becomes an intelligent debate by the town councilors that ends up being successful or becomes another case with nothing being done, again. That’s something I certainly don’t want.

The recent election also leads me to this: The Zoning Board of Appeals, Maine Revised Statute, Title 30-A: Municipalities and Counties, Subchapter 5, states: “Neither a municipal officer nor a spouse of a municipal officer may be a member or associate member of the board.” I have to wonder if that’s the case in Windham. It’s been avoided for years and there’s no wonder why. It’s time for Windham to seek a true legal decision on that matter.

Last Friday much of the eastern half of the United States was hit by rain and snow. If one had listened to the news at all, they probably thought that the worse snowstorm in history was hitting us. Words like catastrophic, disastrous and mega-storm were used to describe what was nothing more than an average storm in Maine. It is amazing that the season’s first snowstorm had vehicles crashing and sliding off of the road. What I find even more remarkable is schools in one state were so ill-prepared that the children had to sleep at the school.

Lane Hiltunen of Windham wonders why it takes so long to clear a road of snow only a few inches deep.