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Earl Brecher


									I, like others, am concerned with energy use because of the cost and because of
air pollution, if not from fear of global warming. I think that there is much that
could be done locally about this if only we have the will to at least try. Here are
some suggestions:
       • First, regarding automobiles. Is there any reason why we pay for and run
half-empty school buses while students are permitted to drive private
automobiles to the high school? When I graduated from Hoosey in 1956, only
three members of my senior class of about a hundred students had cars and
drove them to school. Ban student automobiles.
       • Second, also regarding automobiles. Provide a substantial local tax
incentive for not driving. $500 off your tax bill? You name the figure. How can we
regulate this? Those residents who choose to participate, should limit vehicle
ownership to one car or truck and register the odometer reading at the beginning
of the tax year. The odometer reading is taken again at the end of that year and
the Town writes a check to the vehicle owner, either pro-rated on the miles driven
or for a flat sum if the car has been driven for less than a predetermined number
of miles. Drive under 5,000 miles you would collect the full $500 (or you name
       • Third, also regarding automobile use. The Town could provide a van,
driver and insurance to make routine shopping trips for food and other routine
driving chores for residents. This is in order to end our rural habit of each of us
driving to Torrington or Canaan twice a day to buy cheaper gas or to pick up that
box of noodles at Stop and Shop. The Town would charge users only a minimal
amount for this transportation.
       • Grow our own food? Establish community gardens in each of the
Cornwalls. Europeans and the English have done this for a hundred years and
so do urban areas in Mexico. With a small amount of premium quality land made
available, soil preparation done by the Town, fencing provided, a Community
Farmer appointed to oversee operations and to provide advice. Possible future
expansion to include orchards (first, salvage some of the old existing orchards)
and livestock on a small scale.
                                                       Earl Brecher

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