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Saturday, January 24, 2015

Local Communities, Snow and the Show Must Go On

So the Catskills got some snow over night.  Since I crossed 3 counties last night and this morning, I was able to see 3 different snow fall melodramas. We had two families coming up in the morning, and they braved it so I braved it.  I'm only one person (albeit a pretty energetic one) so sometimes we have to double up on sales appts which is always fun and interesting.  This tour started in Rhinebeck then to Saugerties and then to Kerhonkson and Olivebridge area.  Both groups arrived before me, and were joking each other cause they came from the same part of Brooklyn and were all wearing the same winter jacket from Canada that I guess is all the warm rage this winter - I missed the memo.  One family had two children, the other was pregnant with the first.

As the owner of a business that deals with a lot of towns in a a much more micro way than most, I have the distinct pleasure of seeing the how sausage is made on a very local level.  The nuances and issues I have personally taken an interest in over the past few years have ranged from a local trucking law, overzealous zoning disguised as anti-gas drilling initiatives, flawed town tax reassessment, a 10% tax increase in Highland, a proposed $300,000 deck overlooking the Delaware River in Narrowsburg, and lately the inclination of the local 1% to discourage two interesting business investments in the Town of Highland.

All of these efforts have one thing in common - I'm hugely outnumbered by the local intelligentsia, the support I get for the efforts is strong but quiet among the community, each time have affected change at some level (even if that change is only slowing down a flash mob of momentum about some issue or another) and without a doubt have more tested perspective than those who I debate.  The tendency of the local affluent Sullivan County-ians to follow the dubious lead of people they'd laugh out of the room in their real lives in the City is a strange side show up here in this poor, rural area.

As Winston Churchill said - To Change is to Perfect - but all too often up here in the 2nd poorest county in the State, any change is rejected because they like it poor, empty and without any evidence of earnest local improvement.

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