WHY NO WAS THE CORRECT RESPONSE
Mr. Knickerbocker's reaction to the denial of Bethel's zoning exception application is no surprise. (See Editor's note below letter.) But in the interest of accuracy and fairness let me correct a few of his comments.
Mr. Knickerbocker stated six Danbury residents objected. The fact is eleven residents spoke in opposition and 69 residents signed a petition in opposition. That's 80 Danbury residents on Long Ridge Road who objected, not six.
Mr. Knickerbocker stated the commission ignored written testimony by many Danbury residents. The fact is only two Danbury residents wrote in favor.
Mr. Knickerbocker stated Bethel's application fully addressed the concerns of residents. The fact is every application made for this tank continues to locate the tank in the same unacceptable location. A massive industrial structure on a scenic residential road is unacceptable no matter how much dirt you pile around it. Clearly this concern has never been addressed.
Mr. Knickerbocker stated Bethel has been a good neighbor. The fact is Bethel allows their reservoirs on Long Ridge Road to be used for fishing, swimming, promiscuity, drug use and dumping. Never has Bethel lifted a finger to stop this abuse, or clean up after those they allow to abuse it. In addition, Bethel sued Danbury after their previous application was denied. How neighborly is that?
Bethel has failed to prove no other location for the tank is possible. Bethel continues to say the selected location is the only feasible location. The selected location may be the most cost effective location, but it is not the only possible location. Bethel has cost Danbury taxpayers thousands of dollars in legal fees and has spent thousands of dollars on fancy architectural drawings, but refuses to spend money on a more appropriate location.
Bethel has not proved a hardship deserving of a zoning exception. Wishing to pay less for this tank does not constitute a hardship. Any resident on Long Ridge Road wishing to put a similar structure on their property would also be denied. Danbury has the legal right to enforce zoning laws.
Bethel needs to stop crying, stop lying and start trying to do it right. The only thing stopping Bethel from getting the water storage they desire is selecting a location that is both legal and socially responsible.
(Editor's Note: The letter writer responds to a letter to the editor by Bethel First Selectman Matt Knickerbocker. To see that letter, click here.
To See City Council Member Duane Perkin's response to the Zoning Decision, click here.)