Neighbor … ha, ha, ha

A letter from Kelly Duffy to Clyde Rabideau in regard to the real estate deal between the Duffys and Clyde Rabideau:

The one fact that the announcement of the North Country Community College Welcome Center plans came only hours after the signing of the house contract between us makes me wonder if this deal is actually legal, and should I be a part of it at all? Get out now, Kelly. There are other aspects of this deal that make me wonder as well.

I think that business between a public organization and an elected official should be absolutely transparent. Isn’t is ironic, Clyde? As we sat in the grill talking about doing business out in the open, in restaurants and on the street corners, open and honest, you had this under the table, behind the back, in the fishtank deal with NCCC. Is this ironic or what? But as you know, I’m not educated enough to know whether the business is or was illegal. So, of course, I can’t comment on that. However, what I am an expert at, or at least I think I am, is being a neighbor. Remember that word, Clyde? That’s a word you used twice to introduce me to people. I’m hoping I’m a better neighbor than you’ve shown to be. This is not about money, or poor us. It’s about being a neighbor. It’s about being fair, kind, honest, hard-working people, values we are trying to instill in our children.

Why did I keep my mouth shut for so long? Simple, this shell game could have fallen apart at any second for numerous reasons. So I didn’t speak up. It seemed like it was going to implode on you because of you. It almost did. For once, Clyde, stop being a seasoned politician and do the “neighborly” thing. Let’s bring the tables together by simply releasing the purchase price prior to closing. It will become public knowledge anyway. Believe me, our table and your table are on opposite sides of the room. You release the information, and I will be at closing. If not, well, like Babe Ruth said, “Anything can happen.”

Why do we want this? Why the letter? Simple – we want to try and distance ourselves from your funny business with NCCC. We don’t like it. We don’t do business that way, and had we known about it from the start, we would not have partaken at all. This brings me to your recent comment on Facebook about “taking some heat.” Some may interpret this as an admission to fishy or shady or … At the end of the day, I feel good inside; do you, Clyde?

Now I will move on to the cost estimate of the project. It could be a misprint, or whoever did the estimate just doesn’t know what they are doing, or maybe things are getting smelly again. Let me explain. At 4,600 square feet and a price of about $250 per foot, the building alone will cost well over the $1 million estimate. How many Podunk builders are there that will build commercial buildings for $250 a foot? I don’t know any! Again, this could be a misprint or an inaccurate estimate or … This does not include landscaping, outside lighting or the damn parking lot. Oh, and did I fail to mention the $35,000 sidewalk? So a low-ball estimate just for the building is $1,150,000. What about utilities and infrastructure? Who pays for that? Absolutely laughable!

In closing, I actually think this would be a great addition to our community in a great location, but it does have a terrible smell. As a taxpayer I am ashamed of the way we allow our public organizations to do business. I am a coward.

Your neighbor,


P.S. I challenge you to a black-bear-style wrestling match/fundraiser during Winter Carnival. The money goes to the winner’s charity.