Hi

Firstly, suggest to your friends and neighbors that they keep informed of happenings in West Vincent Township and subscribe to my newsletter!  As you know, it's free.

There was an article in the Daily Local News from June 4, 2013: http://www.dailylocal.com/article The story is condensed and takes full shape after watching the video from that meeting. The video is now on youtube and is easier to view.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y_hgqALpEaw

The following day DLN published an Opinion piece.  http://www.dailylocal.com/opinion That article is submitted by a reader of the DLN and although called opinion one would assume it is not the opinion of the DLN. The article is peppered with biased allegations. Please watch the above video to understand just how skewed the article is.

Whilst I love the idea of a farmer's market in West Vincent I can't believe that the "for profit" vendors for the Farmers Market do not have to pay anything - they do not even have to cover the legal bill for drawing up the agreement! 

I will address just the glaringly misleading points the writer makes with this article.

Paragraphs 1,3,4. Sam Cantrell, the spokesperson for this operation owns a large farm operation in West Vincent Township. For two years in a row, he hosted a very large concert and entertainment operation there over a weekend called Maysie's Farm Fest. In 2010, in 2011, and to come in 2013. He can host this Farmers Market legally, yet not even he will host it. Why not?

Paragraph 2. The writer says "we look askance at the grumblings of those who seem to think that such markets are another way to squeeze money out of associations that do not have much to begin with"   The kid's sports teams that use the fields at the park make no money yet have to pay up to $1550 per year (see attached). The stallholders are coming to sell items for a profit.  Why should they not make some contribution to the real costs?

Paragraph 6. I quote “Both townships (West Vincent and Upper Uwchlan) have already given licenses to the association allowing them to sell food and other items in the park.” The Opinion article fails to mention Upper Uwchlan Township, the section of the park where the Farmer's market is to be located, withdrew it's permission because the use was grossly misrepresented by the West Vincent Township Manager and therefore not in compliance with the zoning of Upper Uwchlan township. Either West Vincent Township or the West Vincent Farmer's Market must seek a variance with the Upper Uwchlan Zoning Hearing Board. In order to get a variance, the applicant must show a hardship.  What hardship have they sustained? The writer speaks as though this is a rubber stamp of approval. It is not. And don't make Upper Uwchlan out to be the bad guys. They are merely following their zoning. I expect they will follow the law, unlike West Vincent Township's practices.

Paragraphs  7,8. A political jab at the Republican candidate for Supervisor John Jacobs states,  “Although he stated that the idea of such a market was a good one, he nevertheless seemed to suggest that it would be a drain on township funds”, claiming he was the only one to "object".  In watching the video, this is another gross misrepresentation. Mr. Jacobs simply just doesn't understand how it is fair for one group to get favorable treatment over another, especially when dealing in commerce (kid's playing sports vs. adults making profits). Furthermore, he was not the only one that had questions about this issue, there were half a dozen as the video clearly shows. Yet the Opinion writer ignores those facts.

In paragraph 8, I would suggest that the legal bills and costs improvements on the grounds will be in the thousands.  Even though
"much of the legal work was done by Township Manager James Wendelgass" his time does not come for nothing - $120,000 per year say around $60 per hour. There will be no way to track payments for repairs to the property from vendors vehicles on the turf, or other unforeseen costs ever being recompensed. This is empty talk being stated to lull people into financing vendors coming from far more than West Vincent. If there are no costs incurred, as the writer challenges John Jacobs, why then is the Township charging the Sports Teams?

The opinion article is careful not to directly mention that there will be pottery, jewelry and other crafts also sold at this venue, making it a flea market, not a farmers market. That is, unless you can grow pottery or reap silver from silver seeds.  Nor does it mention that the Mill at Anselma was underwritten by a grant which funded the Farmer's Market operation and when those funds dried up, so too went the Market. What is Sustainable about this operation?

If there are no costs and West Vincent and Sam Cantrell truly believe in this Farmer's Market, why then doesn't Mr. Cantrell put it on his property? After all, in the author's Opinion it won't cost a dime! 

Best wishes

Chickenman

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