Letter: Let’s acknowledge Concord’s wealth divide 

February 10, 2023

Thanks to The Concord Bridge for its full coverage of those who resist the increased budget for the new Middle School. I believe an analytic eye will conclude that a “No” vote now delays the process and so may result ultimately in even higher cost later. The unremitting inflation in construction costs during delay raises our price tag; a “No” vote may well mean even higher taxes later, so becomes self-defeating.

But: While we must build an appropriate new middle school, equally we must also finally begin to acknowledge and take steps to resolve the sharp wealth divide in Concord. Federal Reserve data, numbers we can rely upon, show that close to a third of Concordians are forced to pay more for their housing than is sustainable for their financial situation.

That is not some small, marginal number among us for whom others might imagine extending ‘charity.’ This is almost a third of our populace. There have been and are, ongoing, more than one effort in town to address this. The most obvious – and also most ideologically explosive – is to shift some of the tax burden to those for whom that really would not make any difference.

Terry Rothermel, before he left us, emailed detailing that this actually is possible, despite views that the Massachusetts Constitution is thought to hold otherwise. I strongly encourage the Select Board to mobilize a full effort in this direction. We cannot be running our seniors out of town and hope to have the generationally diverse community our future generations expect and should demand, that is, a place for the generation of their grandparents.

David Allen

Heaths Bridge Rd