This letter is in response to Ms. Phinney’s recent Letter to the Editor in response to a letter submitted by my wife, Madeline O’Dell. The fact that you were jaw dropped to learn that …
This letter is in response to Ms. Phinney’s recent Letter to the Editor in response to a letter submitted by my wife, Madeline O’Dell. The fact that you were jaw dropped to learn that Little Compton has one of the lowest tax rates in the state and that people move here for that added benefit, besides the benefit of peace and quiet, as well as more space, means to me that you either don’t watch the news or you have your head buried in the sand.
To set the record straight we did not move to Little Compton for just the tax implications. We moved here because our daughter and grandson needed to live with us, and the cost of a much larger home in Tiverton which is where we lived our entire married lives, coupled with the ridiculously high tax rate made staying in Tiverton cost prohibitive to us. Everything my wife stated in her letter to the editor is a fact and the truth.
The fact that you moved here in 1993 and needed not to live with your parents was a personal choice. Asking for and receiving Section 8 housing to be able to live in Little Compton was also your personal choice. Affordable housing mandates come from the state and yes, all cities and towns have an affordable housing mandate. What my wife was saying is that if you receive public assistance or Section 8 housing, one of their rules is that you are not allowed to own a vehicle with a value greater than approximately $2,000. How realistic is it to believe that a vehicle worth less than $2,000 will be able to transport a person from Little Compton to anywhere for very long? I will answer that for you. Our daughter had a PT Cruiser under that value when she moved in with us and within months it wasn’t worth keeping.
What my wife was trying to get across to people in her letter was simply without proper amenities, such as public transportation, it is unreasonable to believe that affordable housing will work in Little Compton. My wife and I both had attended Town meetings regularly for years in Tiverton and have a very good understanding of how politics works; with I being on multiple committees and my wife serving for four years on the Budget Committee. We are not NIMBY people at all. We are realistic people. Furthermore, Little Compton is not the only community that is not meeting affordable mandates in the state. However, due to the current real estate prices which are still climbing, Little Compton will not be able to meet that mandate any time soon, unless the town wants to give away a lot of land for free because just the cost of building materials makes it nearly impossible to build affordable housing in the current economic climate.
In closing, I believe that Little Compton is a town of caring people. But I also believe in part due to the number of people I speak to in town, most people want Little Compton to stay little. If you want urban sprawl, go to Tiverton. The last time I checked there were still more than 1,000 single family home building permits on file and waiting to be built. Watch what happens to Tiverton once that happens.