To the editor:
Seldom have I been more surprised and disappointed by the editorial as I was by "Time to rethink Port's historic district" (March 26).
Under the guidance of the LHD study group, we are gathering information about how LHDs work and what Newburyport's citizens want in their LHD, if we have one. We are about midway in this evaluation process, and changes are being made to the proposed guidelines based on citizens' input. Now, The Daily News editor wants to halt this open, democratic, educational process?
The editor states that "there may well be a majority of residents who favor the district, but that does not matter ... it comes down to what the 11 members of the City Council think." The logic of this argument is that the City Council members do not listen to their constituents.
And he argues that a majority is not enough to support a decision ... there should be "broader public support" ... in fact, a "groundswell." The logic of this reasoning is that what the majority wants is not sufficient.
He states that some of the strongest voices of opposition comes from High Street homeowners, but what he does not say is that some of the strongest voices in support of an LHD come from High Street owners.
I could go on and on about the illogic of the editor's reasoning, but the suggestion that distresses me most is that he wants to end the open and productive discussion Newburyporters are having about the proposed LHD in our city. I say let the conversation continue with the goal of creating LHD guidelines that will work comfortably and helpfully for our citizens.