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Board denies park-use request from farmers market

"I can't speak for the entire board, but I would think that such a condition would be a deal-breaker for us," she said. "We would look for someplace else, because our policies are that our markets are open to all of our members."

In explaining his opposition to the request, Mayor Rabideau says it's his job to stand up for taxpaying businesses in the village.

"They pay a lot of taxes - god knows they pay a lot of taxes - and this is a direct appeal to us," he said. "I would support an amendment allowing this farmers market not to have a baker, but I'll have to respect the wishes of this particular merchant at this time - so the answer is no."

Trustee John McEneany has been an adamant supporter of both the Tuesday and Saturday farmers markets.

But he said Monday night that many downtown merchants in Saranac Lake sell goods similar to those sold at the local farmers markets.

"If it is, in fact, the desire of the board to protect that relationship with our merchants, than both markets would have to be called into question," he said.

However, McEneany says the markets are good for Saranac Lake.

"My own personal feeling is, I think it adds to the traffic downtown," he said. "By extension, I think our downtown merchants do receive a boost in foot traffic because we do have that many more people in town. We've also seen on Saturdays how filled that park is due to the market's success."

McEneany wants the board to revisit the issue in the near future.

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