I’m sorry to hear that grant money intended for the Rumford Library was deemed more important to offset the state’s funding shortfall. Perhaps state officials should balance their budget in the traditional way — cut wasteful spending.

It was exciting to think the Rumford Library Growth Committee had developed a plan that seemed to be acceptable to most Rumford citizens. The proposed grant, as a funding strategy, seemed to fit the bill. The plan to mix the old historic library with the new location and addition was creative. I had begun to believe that Rumford was on a path for real economic development.

Although I agree that the current economic outlook in the River Valley is dreadful, it’s important to develop and nurture a vision for excellence.

The question needs to be asked, “What are the ‘all season’ recreational, public safety and educational infrastructure services that would attract people to our region?”

Traditional necessities identified by other regions include the view and use of rivers, lakes, mountains and trails, public safety (fire safety and police protection), hotel accommodations, indoor tennis, indoor swimming, indoor exercise facility, full function library, local college, excellent schools, student activities and the availability of seasonal outdoor activities such as skiing, skating, snowmobile activities, snowboarding, golf, hiking trails, swimming and boating.

Residents need to keep the faith. If a new library, a new indoor sports center and modern hotel accommodations continue to fit a vision for the region, it will happen at some time in the future.

Len Greaney, Rumford Center

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