Letter to Editor: Story made matters worse

Your recent front page article, “Attendance struggles beset board,” about the Town of Tremont Planning Board, is not only disheartening but is misleading in omitting pertinent facts.

For instance, I and the other board members who had to miss meetings were excused by formal action of the Planning Board itself. And one of the members you cite as having properly met the attendance requirement has been on the board for all of two months.

Your decision to write about individual board members without contacting them beforehand to provide an opportunity to comment is unprofessional and discourteous, especially given that we are volunteering our time in support of our home community.

Since I joined the Tremont Planning Board in February of 2018, there has never been a reporter from the Islander in attendance at a single meeting, yet your paper apparently considers itself sufficiently informed to write articles about the workings of the board.

With “reporting” such as this, it is no wonder that Mount Desert Island towns struggle to fill these kinds of volunteer positions. Instead of discouraging community volunteers by writing disparaging articles about them, why don’t you focus on the real story — the difficulties our communities face in attracting and keeping volunteers on town boards and what can be done to improve the situation.

With articles such as this, your paper is failing both its readers and the communities it covers. Unless your news reporting and editing policies improve in the near future, I, for one, plan to discontinue my support of the paper, and I would not be at all surprised if other readers follow suit.

Geoffrey Young


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