New York village officials fret Dunkin’ drive-thru will make eagles sore
Bald eagles apparently don't run on Dunkin’, according to opponents of a gas station owner's plan to add the doughnut chain's service in a bid to boost business.The eagles, mind you, are miles away - and experts have testified that this business is no threat to them.The town has been granted discretion to approve or deny permits, and the Chairman of the Planning Board - who won't give interviews - is the one holding up the permit. They've been jerking the gas station owner around for months, and the eagle issue only came up recently.
Kenny Elmes, owner of the Elmesco Citgo in Cold Spring, N.Y., says he's dealt with one obstacle after another from his local planning board over his goal of replacing the station's repair garage with a Dunkin' Donuts drive-thru.
So what's going on? I think it can be summed up here:
"I physically cannot keep working," Elmes said. "Converting to the this will help keep me in business. If I can't, I'll have to sell the place."Emphasis mine. $50 says that's the intent from the get-go. I wonder if Chairman Barbaro - or one of his friends or "associates" - has a business in the immediate vicinity that would benefit from expansion? Either that or there's a personal beef between Barbaro and Elmes, always a possibility.
Much like phony cries of racism or sexism, this sort of environmental shenanigans hurts everyone. Legitimate cases will be viewed with a jaundiced eye after such an egregious abuse. Petty tyrants on other Planning Boards will be emboldened to act in a similar manner - and to use the bald eagle and other endangered animals to run their opponents out of business.
In this case, it's hard to imagine that a repair shop would have less of an environmental impact than a coffee shop drive thru. It defies credibility that nesting birds miles away are going to be affected by a Dunks attached to a gas station. It's far more likely that either a personal beef or plans are behind the stonewalling, with a thin green veneer to cover the skulduggery.
I hope Mr. Elmes gets his donut shop - and the petty town dictators get voted out in the next election.
That is all.
Another dispatch from...
(image courtesy of Robb Allen)