No bailout for Fort Ti

To the editor: Just like the Wall Street bandits, Fort Ticonderoga is looking for a bailout of its financial situation a situation created primarily by the mismanagement of its director Nick Westbrook and some board members. The Fort has done little to demonstrate that it is any kind of friend to the community. Its board of directors made a statement in 1999 not to give in to local pressure to renew the state lease on the Lake Champlain boat launch. After over three years of hell, an agreement was finally reached to renew the lease with the state for another 50 years. The results show that the town of Ticonderoga had no input into the design. As a result there are more trees, less parking and a narrower launch. There was also the infamous Relic Law that Mr. Westbrook and the Fort wanted the town to pass. That meant if you had in your possession or found a musket ball or as little as an arrowhead, you were to turn it over to the fort. You could consider yourself a criminal for using a metal detector because you would possibly be stealing the area heritage. After another long, heated fight, that proposed law was defeated by a 4-to-3 vote. Several times the town has asked permission to erect an informational kiosk on fort property, only to be denied. The hope was that tourists just might cross the Route 22 intersection and spend their money in town instead of just visiting the Fort and driving to other destinations. The only reason local residents now have free admission to the Fort is because of an old newspaper article that was uncovered stating that if the town dedicated the road going into the fort to them, this is how they would reciprocate. Years of collected admission has not resulted in so much as an apology or any monetary gift to the town. How ironic the Fort wants to sell one of its priceless paintings. The Fort should sell some of its lake-front property to someone who would put it back on the tax rolls and broaden the town tax base. Richard Holroyd, Ticonderoga

Vote on this Story by clicking on the Icon


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment