CORRECTION: Remarks Wrongly Attributed to Montpelier Planning Chief Mike Miller

As part of an editorial statement on pages 22 and 23 of the February 16 (2017) issue of The Bridge entitled “A Taxpayer’s Message to City Hall: Clean Up the Econo Lodge Mess,” writer Nat Frothingham wrongly attributed remarks to Montpelier Planning Chief Mike Miller. These remarks or the sense of these remarks were actually spoken by Montpelier City councilor Justin Turcotte during a May 11 City Council meeting.

Here is how the remarks wrongly attributed to Mike Miller appeared in the February 16 paper.

Well, on the health and safety hazard front, Planning Director Mike Miller made a comment at the May 11 meeting that deserves close attention.

Miller began by stating his belief that it was the City’s job to work with and support landowners and private property rights. Then he made his major point, saying, “That building is a disaster. There is asbestos in that building.

The above remarks were not those of Mike Miller. Instead they were taken from comments made by District 3 city councilor Justin Turcotte at a May 11 City Council meeting. Here are Turcotte’s remarks taken directly from the City’s media archive.

Said Turcotte, “Certainly, I’m a strong supporter of private ownership and landowners’ rights and the privilege to do with your personal property what you see fit.

However, I did take the time to go up there (to the abandoned building on the Econo Lodge property) on a couple of occasions with the owner’s permission and got access to that building. The building’s a mess. There’s no point in repairing it. It’s a disaster in there. There is water damage, significant damage to that building, to the point where no-one would want to go into it. The issue, I think, lies with the asbestos that’s in there, and the cost of demolishing, removing that debris.

(Finally Councilor Turcotte addressed this question to Planning Director Mike Miller.

“Do you have any suggestions of what they (the Econo Lodge) might be able to get some (State of Vermont support (for removing the asbestos from the abandoned building.).

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