Friday, May 13, 2011

sound test is out

The sound test is done. How did this test come about?

1) August 2010 Gerry Ennis revokes my permit; 2) Fall 2010 I appeal; 3) December 2010 lawyers come up with an arbitrary settlement; 4) my name appears on the planning board agenda against my wishes; 5) I appear before the planning board; 6) instead of approving the agreement between lawyers, the planning board calls for a public hearing; 7) after the public hearing, the new attorney for the planning board says the arbitrary settlement is arbitrary and wants an objective standard and asks for a sound test; 8) I find the most qualified person I can to conduct the test on the day when I have the most dogs possible available to make as much noise as they can; 9) I conduct the test and the report is not ready for April meeting and ask for more time, planning board says no and we have a discussion in April which costs me more money; 10) the report is now done.


In March, Mr. David Everett of Whiteman Osterman & Hanna said he wanted an objective standard. The previous agreement for a limit of 50 dogs was dismissed as arbitrary. That offer, the arbitrary agreement made in December 2010 to limit the hours and dogs, is therefore off the table. The arbitrary agreement was meant to save time and money did not in fact save time or money. I never thought it made any real world sense. I thought an offer to settle would speed things up. It did not.

If we are going to go by sound science, then the permit needs to be restored as it was in 2009 immediately. The evidence of compliance is now well documented and evidence of wrongdoing is nil.

In March, Mr. Everett asked for a sound test. A test was done on the only day available with an above average number of dogs in residence in the months of April, May or the first half of June. The test was conducted by an engineer with experience and certification who works for an international acoustics design firm.

The report of this test is enclosed here.The plain meaning of the enclosed report is obvious and no retainer for engineering review is necessary. In any event, I would only pay for review by a qualified acoustics engineer with no standing connection to any Columbia County town government.

The fact that Glencadia Dog Camp is a very light use of the property is obvious to anyone who has made a site visit, including the many dozens who came to my open house in November 2010, including members of the planning and zoning boards. I think the fact that I mailed an invitation to inspect my business to every registered voter in the town suggests I have nothing to hide.

I think the truth of this matter is abundantly obvious to everyone who wants to see it. If you read the complaints carefully and note the comments about "dripping faucet" and taped phone calls and letters from 2009, you can't but conclude that these are not complaints that deserve this level of attention.

Here is a single PDF containing 1) the new sound report based on measurement, 2) the paper submitted last year showing much the same thing based on pure calculation, 3) your brief showing some of the problems with the process that lead to the revocation of permit in 2010, and 4) other ancillary materials showing the credentials of physics and engineer, video evidence, map of the area, and distances and dates of complaint/complainers.

As the legal brief shows, correctly following procedure and law would never have produced the revocation of permit that started this process. The two science papers enclosed show sound science clearly shows that there is no problem with noise. There is no evidence of any problem what so ever.

I tried to settle. The offer was rejected as arbitrary. The board wanted public comments. I agreed to public comments. The board asked for a sound test. The sound test shows the same as the physics paper submitted last fall: the charge of loud barking defies the laws of the universe.

A more ridiculous charge cannot be imagined and there is no public interest in pursuing this matter further. After more than $50,000 in expenses on my part and a similarly large number on the part of the town of Stuyvesant, it is time to close this matter.

My permit was duly issued in 2009. There is no evidence of any violation and there never was any legitimate evidence of any problem what so ever. Any objective standard would indicate no need to add conditions.

This matter needs to be closed immediately.

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