To the Editor
There will be a very important meeting this Thursday Nov. 12 at 6:30 p.m. at the Middle School on Waverley Ave., Watertown.
It is important that people who own property in Watertown show up to protect their property rights. Some are seeking to encumber a homeowner’s rights by putting style restrictions on new construction, additions, or modifications to their homes. This goes beyond the reasonable setbacks and frontage requirements, but deals with style. While we might not like the style of new dormer, addition or porch our neighbor wants to add to his or her house, we have no right to impose our style preferences on them, anymore than we have the right to tell what kind of clothes to wear. Please don’t confuse this with dimensions or square footage … they are talking about putting restrictions of style.
In addition there another move afoot to restrict the amount of non-permeable surfaces on your property to X percentage of your lot. So if you want to put a shed in backyard, a patio, a pool or anything the environmental police say, reduces the amount of “green space,” you’re going to have issues under this proposed ordinance.
So I urge all those who can attend, to attend and speak up. If the Town wants to make non-binding recommendations regarding these matters, that’s one thing. But any ordinance, which requires homeowners to get the Town’s approval on style issue or to put in a patio, shed, pool, or whether the heck you want in you back yard, in the name of green space … is not acceptable. Again, we aren’t talking about set backs from our neighbors, proper square footage, proper frontage. We’re talking about the creation of “Style Stasi” and having to beg Environmental Extremists to be able to put a patio or pool in your back yard.
Property rights are as sacred as any other Constitutionally Protected rights… Free Speech, Freedom to Assemble, Freedom of Religion, The Right to a Speedy Trial, A Trial By Jury, Protection from illegal and unreasonable search and seizure … are all rights we take for granted. Likewise Private Property live and breathe in the 3rd, 4th, and 5th Amendments, not mention that several clauses regarding Private Property Rights were included in Article 1 of the Constitution. We must protect our rights from the government at all levels, that includes fighting abusive of zoning ordinances, the encumber “The Bundle of Rights” that accompany the purchase of real property.