Frequently Asked Questions
1. Why are you against 4H/Agriculture/Farmers?
We’re not against 4H; many of us and/or our siblings/children/grandchildren/friends have participated in 4H. We support 4H and our farmers! What we’re against are individuals warping our democratic system of government to achieve their own personal agenda.
2. It’s only 4 days; what’s so bad about that?
This is not about 4 days of flower/animal judging and petting zoos. It’s about whether 25+ acres of publicly-supported park land should be handed over to an insolvent, independent, business entity for commercial purposes for up to 20 years carte blanche.
3. But it’s only a small agriculture fair, right?
This is not about an agricultural fair; it’s about 8 permanent structures on wholly unsuitable soil, 365 days of dealing with traffic congestion, noise, lights, and security for beer tents, concerts, amusement park rides, and paid admission events — alienation from our park in the process and having to pay to use what we, the taxpayers, already funded to create and own. This is all about creating a FESTIVAL EVENT SITE–read the signs.
4. What’s so wrong about bringing in some cute farm animals?
This is not about bringing farm animals in. It’s about forcing the native species (deer, fox, coyotes, rabbits, possum, raccoons, birds) out, endangering both the wildlife and people in the process. Already there’ve been multiple casualties; even within the first few hours of construction, two fox kits were killed by passing traffic as they fled dozers destroying their den. Birds of prey have been driven out of their nesting/feeding sites. Additionally, all the trash, cans, bottles, plastic ties, ropes, cigarettes, farm animal feces, and oil left in the Fair’s wake pose a hazard to both the native wildlife and visitors to the park. Doubt it? … Google nicotine poisoning.
5. But the Fair Association is paying for everything, right?
Sale of the Dome fell through. The promised $500K was never transferred.
6. The County promised taxpayers would not incur any expense, didn’t they?
It’s a double-edged sword. This involves County legislator(s) and a County Supervisor who are setting this all up and then, because of term limits, will not be here to face the taxpayer wrath when it’s realized that “No tax payer dollars have been spent” does not mean “No taxpayer dollars WILL be spent.” The people will be incurring an immense future tax liability (some estimates project a $2.5 M capital and $2M/year expense) due to this “gift”.
The same group(s) that ran the Dome into debt, are essentially doing the “same old” thing and projecting different results; Brown’s definition of insanity. They’ve partnered with the County who is NOT telling the public what to expect. Anyone remember the Fast Ferry? Yeah, we do too.
7. Wasn’t it determined that Northampton was the best site to have the Fair?
The best site? A centralized site to the general populace located at the Dome Fairgrounds, with easy access, structures on sewers, and adequate services like water and electricity was rejected; instead a location with existing traffic issues, no sewers, which requires costly extension of utility services was selected?
Northampton Park is an area that is designated in the Town of Ogden Comprehensive Plan (approved by the County and New York State) to remain rural, with NO COMMERCIAL DEVELOPMENT . It’s a location that has poor–draining soil designated by the United States Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service as being unsuitable for shallow excavations (ie; utilities), small buildings, steel construction material, playgrounds, and even lawns/landscaping. The only thing the site is good for is as a nature preserve/park.
This doesn’t appear to be a case of selecting the “best site” by any means.
8. This is just another case of “not in my backyard”, isn’t it?
No, this is not another case of NIMBY. Many types of organizations use the Park regularly (ie; Model airplane shows, BBQ-fest, Equine Carriage Driving Competitions, etc); we welcome them with open arms for they respect the land. Once their event is over, they leave the area(s) as they found it. Nothing is left in their wake to indicate they’d ever been there at all. This is not the case with the Fair.
9. Why are you still pursuing this; what’s done is done, right?
Wrong! Everything that’s been done to date is a temporary installation, hastily cobbled together and slapped in (quite illegally we believe). At this juncture it can all be reversed, but it’s imperative we act now to do so. The longer we wait, the worse the situation becomes.
10. But they’ve told us….
This is all about what’s not being openly shared – it’s ultimately what’s at the root of everything.