I have asked to have the following message to be posted on the Lyme Town Website page for candidate statements
Looking for my thoughts on the Senior Housing amendment? See my previous post
Position on Planning Board: Rich Brown
My name is Rich Brown, and I am running for Planning Board. I moved with my wife (Lin Brown, a rheumatologist at DHMC) to Lyme six years ago, having lived for over forty years in the Upper Valley. In my time in Lyme, I have been involved with Those Guys, as an alternate on the Planning Board, as a local business owner (Loch Lyme Lodge), as a manager for LymeFiber, and for fun, I’m a beekeeper and The Juggler Man!
The Planning Board is the body that writes the rules for where and how people can build housing in Lyme. As part of educating myself about the issues, I have attended national, state, and local housing conferences. I have learned:
- Housing is expensive: modestly-priced homes are scarce
- Restrictive zoning rules are a major cause of high cost and limited supply
- To downsize, or simply to live more lightly on the land, people usually must look outside Lyme
I feel a sense of urgency about our housing problems in Lyme. In 2016, the informal “Aging in Place” group proved the need for senior housing. Regrettably, it has taken the Planning Board five years to bring forward a Senior Housing amendment. The Board envisions another year of study before considering whether to expand it to other parts of town. This is not solving problems for Lyme.
I feel the same urgency for other kinds of housing. I know of at least five Lyme families who are seeking smaller homes who probably will not be able to remain in town. This Board has consistently voted against at multiple proposals over the years that could have been helpful to these families.
If elected, I will advocate for a variety of housing types to enhance the community and to live up to the Master Plan’s recommendation to “… allow a diversity of housing types suitable for people in a broad range of economic circumstances.”
Feel free to share this post on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, or email. Any opinions expressed here are solely my own, and not those of any public body, such as the Lyme Planning Board, Budget Committee, or Trustees of the Trust Funds where I volunteer. I would be very interested to hear your thoughts – you can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org.