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Editorial: Will Rowe have to start over?

Brief thoughts on some of the events making news from around Franklin County and the North Quabbin area:

A recent decision by the Rowe Planning Board to deny a special permit needed for the building of a solar farm on 44 acres will now be considered by Franklin County Superior Court. Undoubtedly, there are legitimate reasons for the denial, including ones that those board members who objected to the plan cited. But whatever merits there were in the case made against the plan, the vote is likely to be for naught if it turns out that board member behavior factored into the decision. We realize that in small towns, there can sometimes be a certain casualness when it comes to interaction between board members and the audience, but if actions by some turn out to have crossed the line, the matter may have to be reconsidered.

Spending more for education

We can’t say that we’re surprised that a number of school districts are seeing serious jumps in budget requests. Districts during the past couple of years have been trying to hold the line, but there comes a time when increases have to be made so there is no reduction in programs and services. The question in all of these cases is whether communities are willing to buy the arguments made for the increases. Residents should make sure they’re informed, and take an active part in the process.

Snow storm behaviors

Snow storms seem to bring out all kinds of behavior. You have the people who really enjoy the snow and try to make the best of it, whether that means taking advantage of it to go skiing, sledding or taking a walk with the dogs — and those who simply like to stay warm and dry inside. And there are the drivers who think that because the snow reduces the number of cars out, that the entire road belongs to them. This includes stopping or parking where they want. Such behavior is a good way to cause an accident. The bottom line is that just because there’s a snow storm doesn’t mean the rules of driving are suspended.

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