Editorial: All for one and one for …
The issue of a combined police and fire headquarters isn’t new to town, but this week it came to a head with the Police Commission presenting a case for why the two departments needed separate structures.
Among the reasons given to the selectmen: juveniles, domestic violence, sexual assaults, and court mandates.
Basically, police need their privacy. And that’s a fine argument.
However, the selectmen also have a rationalization of their own. It’s their job to check off every box before presenting a multimillion-dollar project — whether it’s a new building or renovations to an old one — to the public for a vote. In essence, their due diligence must be seen.
The net result is that the cops must wait some more after two decades of being put on the back burner.
Meanwhile, their current building gets older and older. Ditto for the fire folks.
And space is a concern, too. The square footage of ever-expanding service departments need to be addressed, but where can the buildings grow?
Most people can agree there’s not much space on Catoonah Street for a bigger fire complex, and the police headquarters up on East Ridge Road isn’t exactly roomy.
The ideal building will be central to town — if sharing one is what the selectmen decide, but there isn’t a location for it.
Round and round we go, where this nightmare of a train ride stops — nobody knows.
There is something clear here, though: a winner. And that’s the consultants hired to study the buildings. They’ll have a steady workflow for months, and possibly years, to come.