I swear it follows me everywhere I go.
Way back in 2007, it was in South Jersey (that’s basically the New Jersey suburbs of Philadelphia, for those unfamiliar).
For those that are familiar, you may have heard of the struggles many towns, not just in South Jersey, but the entire state, went through.
If I remember right, they had a very odd way of going about it, where towns could more or less buy another town’s Affordable Housing overages. To me, that seemed to defeat the purpose of Affordable Housing. They are currently in the "third round" of rules down there in the Garden State, and I think that is fitting, because this always did seem more like a boxing match than anything else.
It definitely does not seem like as much of a "fight" up here in the Berkshires. While there may be a few disagreements, or differences of opinion, I really do believe everyone is genuinely concerned for those who maybe just need a little help.
Unlike New Jersey (and thankfully), urban sprall encroaching in the north from New York City, and the south from Philadelphia, is not so much a problem up here. And to echo what Phyllis McGuire says on page five, the peaceful and serene surroundings are part of the reason my wife and I relocated.
Granted, we still rent in Pittsfield, but we have our eye on purchasing something within the next year. I would love that to be in Williamstown.
To shift gears just a bit, The Advocate received an update on the proposed Sand Springs Recreational Center. Here again was more proof of why we need to move to Williamstown. Not just because, once completed, it will be a great place for swimmers, but to see the community come together and build something - or rebuild, depending on how you look at it.
Don’t take this community involvement for granted (and I am not saying anyone does). It’s just that so many in the suburban sprawl communities have started to, and no one cares anymore, which made it very difficult to stay in my birthplace of Philadelphia. It can be infectious: one person stops caring, then two, then four, eight, 16, etc., and pretty soon you stop caring, too. Which is part of the problem with American society in general today, but that’s for another column, on another day.