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Coalition wrongly accused of spreading fear, misinformation; town officials should resign

The Buck Creek Coalition was wrongly accused of spreading fear and misinformation, of collecting false signatures and of threatening New Middletown residents. The accusations, printed in last week’s Corydon Democrat and attributed to the New Middletown Clerk-Treasurer Cyndi Mattingly, are completely false!
In less than two weeks, the coalition volunteers were able to collect over 2,380 signatures, from all over Harrison County, on petitions asking the county council to vote against a sewer project that would dump sewage wastewater into Buck Creek. These signatures were collected with a smile and a thank you from our volunteers ‘ many of them children.
After sending out an extremely nice letter to the ‘good people’ of New Middletown, the Buck Creek Coalition sent out two of our representatives to each home in order to complete our survey. Thirty-three homes willingly agreed to sign a survey against the proposed sewage plan that would have polluted Buck Creek. Four homes supported the plan, one was undecided and 11 declined to sign the survey.
The greatest fear that our volunteers encountered was not fear from the coalition (quite the contrary) but fear from their town and county leaders who authorized a letter that appeared to threaten ’eminent domain’ if the town’s people did not support the sewage proposal. Our volunteers encountered numerous elderly people who were visibly upset over that letter authorized by town leaders because these elderly people truly believed that town officials would condemn their homes if they refused to go along with the sewage plan. Our volunteers worked hard to calm their fears and explain to them that the letter from town officials was not threatening such action!
Cyndi Mattingly also gave a slap in the face to all renters in New Middletown by claiming that their coalition survey shouldn’t be counted because they don’t own the property. ’75 percent of the signatures are not from property owners … ‘
To accuse the Buck Creek Coalition members of scaring people and making them feel unsafe is an outrageous lie. It is New Middletown town officials who ought to apologize. They should apologize to the thousands of people who opposed their sewage plan, and they should apologize to their town’s people for scaring them and for saying that home renters should have no voice in a town’s major decisions. In fact, this would be a good time for the New Middletown officials to resign so the people can elect new leadership who will truly represent them and not act uppity to renters.

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