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Farmers Market Rules to Get Second Look

The issue is going back to the Attleboro City Council at the request of Councilor Jonathan Weydt.

Nearly , that at times became heated debate, was not enough to settle the dispute between library and farmers market officials over use of the municipal parking lot on 74 North Main Street. One week after the council approved new rules for the market, the issue will go back to the governing panel tonight at the request of Councilor Jonathan Weydt.

The new rules approved last Tuesday by the divided council include a requirement for the market to hire a police officer and a prohibition on market customers from parking in the lot located next to the  where the market takes place from June to October. While the acting chair of the Library Board of Trustees praised the rules as a good solution to meet public safety concerns, market officials are opposed. They say the requirement to hire a police officer is not financially feasible and .

Weydt filed a motion last Wednesday for the council to reconsider the decision. He told Attleboro-Seekonk Patch that "the future of the Attleboro Farmers Market is in jeopardy" and the council's decision "sent a message that Attleboro is anti-business."

Farmers Market President Heather Porreca wrote in a statement that appeared on the market's website and on Attleboro-Seekonk Patch, "Our immediate decision of our location [for the market] will be the result of what transpires at the next council meeting."

Linda Binns, acting chair of the Library Board of Trustees, did not respond to Attleboro-Seekonk Patch's request for comment about the issue of reconsideration.

Weydt said in an interview on Friday that he had received an overwhelming amount of feedback about his action, most of it positive.

"I've been getting phone calls and an outpouring of support from people hoping things change a little bit," he said. "It's been crazy. I've never had so many phone calls about anything as much as this issue."

The special council meeting is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. at . The council also has its regular committee meetings tonight as well as a closed session regarding the Attleboro Redevelopment Authority. The order of the meeting will be determined tonight.

Laura Dolan April 10, 2012 at 04:33 PM
Well, "Henry", I hope you're not speaking on behalf of the AFM, as I'm sure they would be disappointed in your venom. (name calling? really?) Have you ever been to the shelter? It's not good. Why can't we be a community that supports the AFM and the shelter? Bill K, we as tax payers do not support the animals at FAAS, they rely on donations (obviously not from you). I assure you Bill K, the animals are not eating caviar and getting massages. As for me, I will continue to support the AFM AND FAAS. I will go to council meetings and fight for both.
Roxanne Houghton April 10, 2012 at 05:50 PM
"Army" should not have tried to pit the Farmers Market aginst the Attleboro Animal Shelter and nobody should begrudge the Farmers Market, their day. That was a very nasty comment. Both entities are worthwhile and on some levels are they so different? In the case of both entities, hundreds of people have worked for many many years - for the betterment of this city. Both have asked for nothing for themselves. After almost 20 years of literal blood sweat and tears, we are going to have a new Animal Shelter. There are hundreds of people to thank. The Animal Shelter will house the lost, abandoned and abused animals of our city. Nobody cares more about this than me, I also wholeheartedly support the extrordinary efforts of the hundreds of people who worked tirelessly to put the Farmers Market together. Not only do they bring something really nice to our uptown, but they donate time and food to the food pantries of this city, which serve many of the less fortunate. it takes very special and unselfish people to undertake both of these endevours. We, all of us who worked so hard for so many years to see a new shelter, have acheived our goal. The Farmers Market is still in the middle of 'fighting their battle" to be recognized, be welcomed and to be treated with the respect that they deserve for what they do. Dont begrudge them their day in print or in any other way. The shelter went through their "battle" too.
Gretchen Robinson April 10, 2012 at 06:01 PM
thanks Jonathan. We can take better care of dogs and cats without homes AND have a farmer's market. I don't understand why people have to be SO negative!!! Look at all the wonderful, amazing work the AFM and FAAS do in the City. Why is the glass always half full with many of those who comment here? So many comments are full of fault finding. If you're gonna gripe folks, then do something about it. I called Rick Conti about my concerns with the FM and expressed myself forthrightly on his conduct toward the Library Trustees. We're still friends and have a mutual respect of each other. I was polite and so was he. If you call the CCs and let them know your concerns then they know you are committed to the City we all supposedly love. Griping is a cheap shot. Put your efforts where your mouth is. We can disagree without of being disagreeable.
Gretchen Robinson April 10, 2012 at 06:03 PM
EVP that's an assumption. The facts could fit any number of assumptions. You and others just pick the first one that pops into your head and run with it. Do you have proof that this is so? If not, don't spread gossip.
Gretchen Robinson April 10, 2012 at 06:06 PM
Bill K. Negativity and ignorance. These folks work miracles to find homes for these beautiful animals. They go the extra mile and have many, many successes. What do you want, animals killed before the people who brought them in the door are back in their cars. Have an ounce of compassion here. And find out what's really going on with FAAS and other area shelters. It's a pretty dramatic and hopeful story.
Gretchen Robinson April 10, 2012 at 06:12 PM
there's a terrible 'scarcity mentality' at work here, as if we can't care for homeless animals AND have a FM. Come on folks, we're better than this. This is a tawdry argument to say the shelter is not a hotel. Gimme a break. How can anyone be so heartless and cheap. The days of putting innocent, living breathing animals, former pets into a vacuum chamber and sucking the air out their lungs is long gone. Don't you know that what we do to helpless creatures we do to ourselves??? We can care for animals and elders and the ill--if we care. For the scarcity mentality substitute a sense of abundance. If folks in Foxboro get to vote on a casino that will cost 1 Billion dollars, and which locals will frequent, then there is PLENTY of money available to do what's right.
Just sayin' April 10, 2012 at 06:38 PM
Whoa, we're losing focus here folks. Bottom line, we should all be celebrating democracy in action here. We should be thankful the council is reconsidering the vote. For anyone who made phone calls (no matter your position) you should be proud of yourself for being part of the process - and ultimately part of the solution. Let's hope that the council members can see the overwhelming support of the AFM, support of the Library, and that the final decision allows them both to co-habitate. Let's not create bad blood between organizations or make noise that distracts from the topic at hand. I for one hope that whatever the final vote may be, the Library, the council, and the AFM work together starting tomorrow to ensure not only mutual existence but mutual success. Whether the AFM and Library are neighbors or not. Let's look long-term for the betterment of the city, and not short-term to the next season, sale, fundraiser, or election.
Gretchen Robinson April 10, 2012 at 06:42 PM
well said Just sayin'
Gretchen Robinson April 10, 2012 at 07:45 PM
agree that the white alligator money could be better spent. The white lion was treated like a pet with people allowed to pat it. I'm against keeping animals in cages. Period. Important??? me??? No, I've gotten involved and I'm not afraid to call up a city councilor to express concern about his actions and the impact they have had. Roxanne was a CC herself and did a good job. Some of us have committed to this city because it's my home now. If I had the chance to move TO Sweden I would. I'd probably prefer Europe. I like the idea that Sweden has decent health care as a human right. But let me just ask you, not that you have to answer, but where does disgust get a person, in the long run?
Gretchen Robinson April 10, 2012 at 07:56 PM
It's about how money gets prioritized. The Zoo can do what it needs to do to maximize the number of summer visitors. The white alligator is a marketing gimmick and the animal is just a commodity to be exploited and then sent back. I'm against keeping animals as cages. Pet animals or wild animals. As for the Dog Park, it's an amenity that not all people would use. I think dogs need to run free, get exercise off leash, and socialize with other dogs. Yet even with dog parks there are issues. The AFM is a feel good event. It's a visible sign of this as a vibrant community. Even if people don't go, its existence makes people feel good about the City. I'm thinking this is just severe 'growing pains' on the part of the AFM, made worse by the fact that the situation got politicized with a lot of people criticizing and griping instead of asking how they could help. but what is this stuff about "I wish I was important like you"???? don't you have your say here. Can't you call up your local officials, too? Can't you write a letter to the editor of the SC?? Roxanne served this City as a CC and served well. Don't be jealous of her. Let us look to ourselves and ask: "what am I doing to be part of the solution instead of part of the problem?"
Roxanne Houghton April 10, 2012 at 10:04 PM
Sven Sven It is not up to you to determine when anyones "job is done". As long as I live in Attleboro, I will work for what i believe in. If I am always on the winning side, as you say, maybe it is because I work my butt off the the issues that I believe in and do everything I can to "win" as you say.,,I care about things and feel that we all have responsibility to make the things that we care about - happen. I dont sit around whining, using a phony name and attack people who become involved in issues they believe in. Every issue that comes before this city is important to somebody, It is up to that person to make it happen. By the way....stop crying about the dog park and hating people because it hasnt happened. Know how long I worked in many ways to see a new animal shelter?????18 years!! if you value a new dog park - keep at it. If you do, you will be successful... Maybe you should have asked me to help instead of railing about my job being done and that I am always on the winning side. Your post was shameful - and you dont even have the intestinal fortitude to sign your name. I think maybe your job is done - quitter.
Sven Sven April 10, 2012 at 10:18 PM
Pending approval..... and who says the governement doesn't have a long reach.... Did she scare you that much? FREEDOM OF SPEECH
Gretchen Robinson April 10, 2012 at 11:11 PM
Uff da!
Love My Jacks April 11, 2012 at 12:34 AM
Dear Sven, As much as I really appreciate your support for the dog park, I do have to ask you very kindly to refrain from negative comments that may affect our organization. We have worked much too hard to have folks turning their backs on us now because of your comments. Thank you very much. Carol Ferraro, Co-Chair, Attleboro Dog Park Committee
Love My Jacks April 11, 2012 at 12:38 AM
Also wanted to say,Roberta and I attended the City Council meeting tonight in support of the Farmers Market but had to leave early. Things looked like they were going well (in favor of keeping the Farmers Market but maybe moving it to City Hall lot). I can't wait to hear the outcome of the meeting. Attleboro is filled with good people who want the best for the city.
Sven Sven April 11, 2012 at 12:51 AM
Jag med!
Gretchen Robinson April 11, 2012 at 12:53 AM
okay. I know uff da! from the Scandinavian shop in Plainville. What does Jag med mean? Don't reply if it's off color.
Gretchen Robinson April 11, 2012 at 12:55 AM
Class act. I flagged an earlier comment that referred to people who were at the AFM who aren't even in this discussion. Don't like to do that but people need to take care who they talk about and more to the point here, how they represent an organization they don't belong to. Great success in the future. I always said I'd get a dog again if Attleboro gets a Dog Park. Thanks for you hard work and for persevering.
Carol Bragg April 11, 2012 at 01:03 AM
For those who don't know: Uff Da is --- discovering that your male dog is pregnant! Uff Da is --- forgetting your mother-in-law's first name. Uff Da is --- dropping your only egg on the floor! Uff Da is --- eating hot soup when you've got a runny nose!
Carol Bragg April 11, 2012 at 01:07 AM
Jag med = me too Lycka till = good luck
Roxanne Houghton April 11, 2012 at 02:55 AM
The people who worked so hard to make the Farmers Market a success WON! Sometimes the good guys win. Congratulations for all your hard work and for wanting to do something good for Attleboro!!!!
Bill Bowles April 11, 2012 at 03:11 PM
Great result last night. Excellent effort by Councilor Weydt.
Gretchen Robinson April 11, 2012 at 04:45 PM
I disagree with the vote on two counts: First: the buck was passed to the Chief of Police to decide if a police officer was required and he alone will decide on whether "mixed use parking" will be allowed. I think this a poor compromise. The CCs are not doing the job which we elected them to do, namely to make the tough decisions themselves. They were supposed to balance competing interests but flip flopped from going against the AFM's needs to going against the APL's needs. Secondly, that lot is small especially with today's giant SUVs and pickups . When September comes and the two entities have to share, it will be crowded and chaotic. I'm particularly bothered by the idea that the AFM will be open during the Attleboro Library Book Sale in October. That is a poor decision. The parking lot is full for the Book Sale. People wait all year for the sale. It might seem like a win-win, that people will go to both but there just won't be enough parking.
Sven Sven April 12, 2012 at 10:30 AM
Uff Da = had enough! (or any expletive) Jag med = me too Lycka till = good luck GOOD BYE
Kramer April 12, 2012 at 11:04 AM
That is because the people that care about the animal shelter, the library and other important things in the city, are busy WORKING FOR THE COMMUNITY. It is obvious that the AFM people have nothing else to do but to be here bashing anybody that is not on their side. That is how they think democracy works! It seems they are the ONLY business and the ONLY important thing happening in Attleboro!
Alice Allard April 12, 2012 at 11:41 AM
Kramer: I don't think that you have all of the details. When I shopped at the AFM a couple of times last year I saw and donated at a table for the animal shelter. So I think that AFM was supportive of them along with some other folks that had set up seeking donations. AFM folks are trying to make a difference in the city, but have been given some detours with which they have been willing to work around. I get the feeling from seeing all of the happy faces last year that the community wanted and appreciated AFM. Though new to the city, I believe that they are doing us a service. Please find out if the shelter or others were allowed to participate in the market before calling them out.
Lb4Lb April 12, 2012 at 11:56 AM
Why doesn't the library sell books at the AFM all season long? The library should leverage the AFM to its fullest with the increased traffic that it will bring. The APL had better re-invent itself quickly before it goes the way of the typewriter and joins the ranks of nearby public librairies that are closing.
Roberta Collins April 12, 2012 at 12:38 PM
Alice-You are correct. The shelter was at the AFM last year along with the Attleboro Dog Park Committe and some other non-profits. As past Co-chair of the Attleboro Dog Park Committee I manned one of our tables several times. The AFM allowed us space every other week and the shelter every other week to educate the public on our cause and never charged us a dime. I also know for a fact that not only was the shelter and dog park allowed but also other non-profits as well. AFM did this for us and othesr as a "Community" service when they very well could have charged us to use this space. Not only did AFM give us a space, but every week that we were there, the folks help us to set up and take down our materials. I also know that when the shelter was having their Fall fund raiser, that AFM let the volunteers walk around the market and hand out flyers promoting the event. I don't know how much more people think that they could do. They were fair to all and I find it horrible that people forget just how good AFM was to all. Though I no longer live in Massachusetts and have stepped down from the Dog Park, I felt that people should know first hand just how kind AFM was to us. They helped the Dog Park spread the word about our goals and allowed us to set up donation jars towards fencing. I was very happy to learn that they will return this year. Congratulations AFM---you guys ROCK!! Roberta M. Collins Past Co-chair Attleboro Dog Park
Steven Scott April 12, 2012 at 06:04 PM
the market will NOT be held on the day of the book sale.("Binns said she feared the approved measures would create a safety risk. However, she said the library would manage to co-exist with the market when it takes place on Saturdays from June to October (with no market taking place on the Saturday of the library bookfair). As to your 1st objection,who better to make public safety decisions ?
EVP April 12, 2012 at 06:43 PM
I always get a kick out of the "Liberal Spin" lumping elders in with dogs and cats. Elders are far more important than Fluffy and Fido. The "Dogs and Cats" are people to crowd make me puke! You are not better than anyone.

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