2018-05-25 / Letters

Candidate should see both sides of issues

To the editor,

This letter is in response to the recent missive advocating the election of Albert Kolff as a KLPD trustee. I have never met Mr. Kolff. I can assume he is a good, intelligent man and is clearly a passionate, concerned citizen and fully qualified to serve in a civic office, but his name has been attached to virtually every written piece in the last few years refuting the logical decision of KLPD to not re-license the Kennebunk dams.

The idea of electing someone with such a hopelessly biased position on the upcoming decision of the Mousam dams as a voting member affecting its outcome seems terribly wrong.

How can any person listen dispassionately to both sides of an argument when they are already the chief advocate of one side of it? You cannot.

There is enough placing one’s thumb on the scale in our national politics; our local politics are better off without this.

Personally, I am an unabashed fan of letting the Mousam run free. I walk down to it now and see a stagnant, buggy artificial ecosystem with little activity, few fish surviving the high water temps behind the dam.

The idea of sea-run fishes such as salmon and shad trying to survive in such an environment is laughable. These creatures live in special places, which the Mousam once was.

There was a reason the dams were not re-licensed. They simply do not make sense anymore, as inconvenient as this may be to some. The benefits of dam removal are well-known: greatly improved water quality, the reestablishment of anadromous fishes/sport fisheries, the possibility of a river walk and increased usage and enjoyment of a unique natural resource for all.

The advantages of a free-flowing Mousam greatly outweigh the interests of the relatively small number of true abutters and their friends attracted to the defense of the status quo.

The Mousam River does not belong to any special interest group, but to the entire state of Maine. We are its caretakers and we have done a poor job.

But we have a remarkable opportunity to return a large portion the long-abused Mousam to its natural state. If not taken now, our children and their children will wonder why such a simple and obvious choice to bring down the dams when they were no longer needed was made in so many other communities across the state and the U.S., but not Kennebunk.

The decision when the time comes will likely be easy; it is the politics that make it difficult.

The community will be better served by those decision-makers who can see both sides of such an important issue.

Tim Ess

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