Invited to Comment on Track’s Impact, Ossipee Passes

Ossipee — July, 29, 2004 — Ossipee Selectmen have decided to take no action regarding a notice from the Tamworth Planning Board about an upcoming public hearing on Club Motorsports’ wetlands application with the town. The Tamworth Planning Board ruled last week that it would notify towns in the region about the application because of a potential regional impact posed by the project.

Selectmen reviewed the correspondence at their meeting Monday night. Selectman Harry Merrow said he does not think the town of Ossipee should get involved in such an issue because he believes it is a Tamworth issue and Ossipee should not tell people in Tamworth what to do.

Selectman Chairman Joseph Chromy said that the issue of the underlying aquifer is a regional issue. But Merrow stuck by his decision, saying that he would not want Tamworth telling Ossipee how to deal with town issues.

State Representative and Ossipee resident Dave Babson asked the Selectmen if they felt the racetrack proposed by Club Motorsports will have a regional impact and what, if anything, they plan on doing about it. Merrow said he believes the track will affect the region. While the traffic may increase, he believes a racetrack will also produce jobs and bring in business. Because of this, he said he would do nothing.

Selectman Peter Olkkola said there definitely will be changes as a result of the track, and there are some construction projects being proposed to deal with an increased traffic flow. Olkkola said that he thinks the racetrack will end up being an asset, even if it causes an inconvenience a couple days out of the week. Olkkola also said it is Tamworth’s problem, not Ossipee’s.

Chromy said he sees all of the potential effects mentioned by his fellow board members as possibilities and added that he is concerned about the aquifer. However, Chromy said he does not know enough about how the project could affect the aquifer to either agree or disagree with building the racetrack. He is planning to attend as many public hearings on the issue as he can so he can have more information.

But Babson said that West Ossipee could be affected by the racetrack. Responding to Babson’s concerns, Olkkola said that he has not heard a word of concern about the racetrack’s impact on West Ossipee from anyone except Babson. At that point, he asked Babson if he would prefer the impact of a racetrack or 100 houses on that property. Babson responded by saying that it was not his choice, but the choice of Tamworth citizens.

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