2014-04-11 / Letters

Here we go again with parking waiver

To the editor:

Yogi Berra’s famous comment, “It’s like déjà vu all over again” immediately came to mind when I heard that the Kennebunk Board of Selectmen voted March 11 to put a question on the June ballot to ask voters to approve an amendment that would waive requirements to off-street parking standards for first floor retail or restaurant space in the Lower Village.

Many Lower Village taxpayers had attended numerous public meetings last year to testify that the waiver provision should be allowed to expire and not be renewed.

The waiver provision did go off into the sunset, although it had previously been extended for one year. The disastrous consequences and disruptions to the neighborhood when waivers were granted to eating establishments that did not have sufficient parking for patrons were overwhelmingly demonstrated.

Harry Falcone, that stalwart citizen monitor, rightly questioned why the planning board is trying to resurrect this waiver provision and bring it back to the voters. So here we go: plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose (the more things change the more they stay the same).

In discussing whether or not people will obey clearly marked parking spaces, planning board member Robert Metcalf said, “Well, you can lead a horse to water but you can’t necessarily make it drink. That is the same thing I’ve found with parking.”

That remark could equally apply to those public officials who once again are leading the taxpayers to the water, seeking approval of a waiver of parking clause from an unwilling public.

I hope that the citizens of Kennebunk are as smart as Metcalf’s horse when they enter the voting booth next June, and that they refuse to drink it – once again.

Robert F. Lyons
Lower Village Kennebunk

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