LTE: Protect Charlestown’s Zone D and vote NO on Article 3

Dear Editor,


Charlestown residents will vote on Tuesday, March 14, 2023. Warrant Article 3 on the town ballot would allow multi-family housing to occur in the Zone D watershed area of town. Currently, Zone D safeguards forests and agriculture. Recreational opportunities abound in this area for hikers, hunters, snowmobilers, and scouts. The undeveloped land in Zone D protects landowners of Charlestown and surrounding towns from erosion and flooding, provides clean water, and is a haven for plants, birds, and wildlife.

Although Article 3 states multi-family housing will be allowed by special exception, no clarification is provided as to what special exceptions will be considered. Recent actions by town officials have been arbitrary and shown their unwillingness to follow state requirements and safeguard conservation lands. In granting a building permit for a mansion atop Perry Mountain accessed via an historic class VI road, town officials have turned a blind eye to their contractual obligations to protect conservation easement land, and to ensure new development follows building code requirements. They have been unwilling to apply the watershed guidelines to prevent damaging runoff to surrounding properties. If this is done for a single-family dwelling, there is little hope town officials will apply safeguards when approving a new multi-family development.

In a recent survey, sent to all Charlestown taxpayers, 94% of respondents stated that the town should protect its natural resources. Article 3 is at odds with the declared wishes of town taxpayers. Five other zones comprising a significant amount of land are already available for development of multi-family dwellings in Charlestown. Why destroy this valuable watershed zone for this purpose? Vote NO on Article 3 and vote to protect our town’s natural resources!


Respectfully submitted,

Bonnie Remick         603-826-3844

Sharon Francis         603-826-5865

Cedric Fisk                 603-826-5275

Charlestown, N.H.

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