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On Sept. 22, an enthusiastic crowd attended the ribbon cutting of Branford’s new Tabor trail section of the Shoreline Greenway Trail. A few weeks later, the bench honoring Greenway Trail volunteers that had been placed near the trail overlooking Chet’s pond was defaced with graffiti and burn marks. The lovely gazebo on top of nearby Ecology Park has also been defaced. And the trails in the northern reaches of the town and Branford Land Trust properties, Queach and DiLeo, have been ruined by ATVS illegally using these trails. Walkers, including a seven year-old child, who have encountered those driving the ATVS have been threatened and harassed. People are increasingly afraid to walk in those areas.
Branford’s police seem reluctant to take on the problem with the ATVs, and we can’t expect them to mount a 24 hour surveillance of public properties. That means that all of us in Branford, who are after all the owners of these properties, have a responsibility to help protect them. They are meant for the healthful recreation of all of us. If you see something, say something. If you know something, report it to the police. And those with children should teach them to be law-abiding citizens, not scofflaws.
Branford is a wonderful town with many beautiful public spaces. Let’s work together to help stop this vandalism.
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