I believe I speak for all the residents of Mashpee, except for a near 20 who live on Popponesset Island, when I say “enough is enough.”
Richard Cook has endured the wrath of a handful of homeowners whom he has greatly disturbed. He has disturbed a two-month blissful existence for most of them. Question: do these homeowners have a right to claim the waters off Popponesset Island as their own? They seem to think so.
Richard Cook has been attempting to establish an oyster farm in the waters of Popponesset Bay since 2011 and has been through hell in this attempt to see it become a reality. Those who hope to block the farm fail to recognize the positive impact oyster farms have on our waters. They serve to clean our waters by the removal of nitrogen and a vast number of other pollutants.
After winning considerable local and state backing and that of a Barnstable Superior Court judge, he is presently confronted with an amendment passed to create a “marine sanctuary” off the island’s shores; a blatant refusal to allow the fulfillment of his plans which had been finally granted .
This was an underhanded maneuver to bench the outcome of his oyster farm. Why was a state representative from Newburyport, who will be stepping down at the end of his term, chosen to implement this underhanded deed? Few lawmakers present were even aware of the impact their decision would create. They stated that “sensitive environmental issues” were to blame for passing this amendment. I maintain that the principal “sensitive” reason was that these homeowners imagine that their views would be hindered.
Who has the authority here? Should the town of Mashpee be intimidated to give up on Dick Cook or should we take steps to nullify this nonsense and conclude that this amendment should never have been realized by those who intend to step on Mashpee toes?