Letters To The Editor: Feb. 15, 2024

by Cape Cod Chronicle Readers

Sidewalk Project Enhances Safety


I read with interest the Feb. 2 Cape Cod Chronicle article entitled “Saquatucket Sidewalk Proposal Could Face Legal Challenges.” Since the inception of the discussions regarding the sidewalk project, I have had numerous correspondences with, among others, Mr. Lincoln Hooper, director of the Harwich Department of Public Works, and MassDOT project manager Thomas Currier, both of whom have promptly returned my phone calls and responded to emails to answer my many questions and address my concerns regarding this project.

After these numerous conversations and emails, my understanding is that, for all projects under the jurisdiction of MassDOT that involve areas with utility poles, MassDOT policy is to relocate those poles back from the edge of roadways. This policy is designed as a safety measure to make it less likely that motorists will hit the poles. My further understanding is that the poles involved in the sidewalk project are within state highway layout, not on private property.

I fully understand the concern of property owners affected by the project that their land may be taken by permanent easements or other means. (The Harwich Port property that my husband and I now own was reduced in land mass by eminent domain.) However, I have been informed that the permanent easements in question involve aerial easements that are 20 to 30 feet above the ground. These easements are necessary so that wires may be serviced and/or repaired if and when necessary.

The sidewalk project would seem to foster the intent of the Harwich Port cultural district statute. The linking of Saquatucket Harbor to the center of Harwich Port by way of a sidewalk would make for a safe connection between the two. Local residents and folks coming off the ferry, fishing boats, and other watercraft would be able to safely walk to the center of town, thus alleviating some of the ongoing parking problems in the town lots. I would think that, as a result of the increased foot traffic by tourists and locals, there would be a boost to cultural development along with an improved local economy thus enhancing property values.

I sincerely hope that the sidewalk project is not tied up in litigation as this project is designed to improve the safety of what has been and still is an incredibly dangerous section of road.

Susan Tomich

Harwich Port

Back Holm As Harbormaster


In Chatham’s search for a new harbormaster, the steering committee would be wise to strongly consider Jason Holm. Working with Jason at the Chatham Fish Pier for 7 or 8 years, I got to know him in his capacity as assistant harbormaster. I found Jason polite, honest, efficient, quick to grasp the mores of fish pier life.

He was equally competent both on the water or writing grants for the town of Chatham. As a former Coast Guard station chief, he learned to keep himself to himself, avoiding local meshes.

I have a lot of saltwater in my socks. Sailing with thousands of fishermen and sailors, over a 70-year lifespan, starting as a 14-year-old deckhand on the old Wilson Line Boston to Nantucket run, finishing up a few years ago on the containership Maersk Carolina, I’ve worked with all shapes, sizes and colors, as they say. Jason Holm would get my vote.

Walter Quinn


Lack Of Respect For Procession


I was in Bourne on Feb. 5 to attend my friend’s funeral. Thankfully it was sunny with blue skies. The funeral procession was long and we all had headlights and hazards on. I was very disappointed that many drivers interrupted the funeral procession from Bourne to Sandwich. Can people just wait a few minutes?

Thomas M Ledwith


Who Needs Help From Above?


In response to J. Coyle's Feb. 1 letter, the “alternate facts” which he cites demand major corrections.

1) No Democrats or Republicans have called for an “open border policy.” If the writer can unearth such fodder from any news clip or quotation, please immediately supply them to The Chronicle.

2) The “catastrophic harm” — if done — affects Democratic and Republican workers equally and can not magically “change voting rolls.”

3) Thankfully, it is only his “opinion” that alleges the Jan. 6 report to be “phony.” Perhaps he should re-read it in its entirety.

4) But here’s the whopper: somehow Capitol Police who were beaten, sprayed and even killed…were merely “waving” in these “tourists?"

5) By all means let us conclude with a plea to a deity that the twice impeached, four times criminally indicted, sexual assaulter, defamer, owner of a bogus university, defrauder of sub-contractors, inheritor of family wealth be “protected.” He’ll need it.

Mark Phillips

Grand Junction, Colo.

Baseball Program Should Be Reconsidered


I’ve been on the Cape now for long enough to appreciate how wonderful it is to live in Harwich. When the town voted to support 204 Sisson Rd. as a multipurpose cultural and recreational center, I was ecstatic. My wife has a studio there under lease to the town. I want to make my voice heard on the subject of the denial of the use of the gymnasium by Cape Cod Baseball Club (“Baseball Clinic Facilities Sought In Harwich,” Feb. 8).

I believe that it should be considered an absolute appropriate use of the space. This is not another nonprofit looking for free meeting space. Mr. Almonte would be a paying customer, and as such, under conditions of his lease, he would be required to make certain promises regarding use of the space.

I think about TD Garden and the fact they can go from basketball one night to hockey the next. Nothing is impossible!

This is a matter deserving further discussion and I think Mr. Khachadoorian should look at a negotiated settlement with an eye to “what is best for the children of Harwich.”

Norman Stafford