Bulletin:10 October

Letter to Editor
“We invite you to share the beauty” is a uniquely warm welcome to Mahone Bay. The powers that be today in that gorgeous town should have that same attitude, not one of “spend your money here on our Main Street and love and support us financially, but do NOT speak your ideas at our meetings.”

I have been appalled and insulted by the tactics of (current) mayor Joe Feeney.  At the first public meeting concerning the destruction of the great soccer field and the adjoining woodland, he stated that only the residents of Mahone Bay would be allowed to speak. He not only opened, closed and dominated the entire meeting with his own statements and defenses, but he appeared intolerant of others’ ideas.  And the more he spoke, the less time there was for citizens to be heard.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but in respect of the office, I’ve always believed that a mayor of any city, town or village is (or should be) the mayor of ALL the people.
In this particular meeting, I was baffled that “Mayor” Feeney from start to finish was a hard-driving salesman for the private developer.

Like many undercapitalized Nova Scotia communities in transition, Mahone Bay was wrought with serious financial, demograhic and infrastructure problems long before this development issue appeared. Communities without well-thought, long-range strategic planning end up desperately taking the first panacea offered to them, not realizing that even greater problems will result; thus a careening from one crisis to another.  It shocks friends of mine when I tell them that  Canada’s wealthiest city, it’s financial capital, Toronto, is fundamentally broke with infrastructure crumbling!

As I sat at the back and listened during the second town meeting (more openly run by citizens), I so badly wanted to say that the problems Mahone Bay faces
Today are greater than the people in that hall, greater than the financial capabilities of the town, greater than the resources of all the local residents combined. The answer lies in drawing in the talents, resources and strengths of the people who loyally still call Mahone Bay their “home town” and spend their
Volunteer efforts and money there, whether they’re from Clearland, Oakland, Indian Point, Martin’s River, Martin’s Point, Maders Cove, Blockhouse, Sunnybrook, Herman’s Island and even Princes Inlet.

Perhaps the future lies in a Mahone Bay encompassing all these areas but still retaining it’s town hall where it now is, and cashing in on the support of all  who feel no loyalty to the Municipality of Lunenburg (obsessed with Osprey Village and Big Box Town at Exit 12) except for bi-annually mailing their property
Tax check to Aberdeen Road in Bridgewater.

It is time for the Mahone Bay AREA to come together, drop the name-calling, and plan for the collective future carefully: TAKING IT SLOW AND GETTING IT
RIGHT. This includes new development that respects heritage, current needs and future growth!  And it’s more than time for the current leaders of Mahone Bay to drop their defenses and take real leadership, or step aside.
Paul Kellogg
Maders Cove, Sunnybrook