Wednesday, August 07, 2013

skill and care...

Boxes awaiting sanding, routing and finish
The three things that are really required for the building of successful communities are skill, care and surrender. Without care being present, skill will never arise. I was thinking of this last night when I woke up early to go over my edited surrebuttal with our lawyer handling our case against the huge powerline planned by AEP-SWEPCO to traverse or forested lands in the Eureka Springs area.

My surrebuttal is based on the failure of the applicant AEP-SWEPCO's to address potential adverse economic impact to our tourist economy. Folks come here in droves to see this place that is so beautiful, and it is beautiful still because folks care about the place.

The state law that is intended to control the activities of the APSC in its regulation of the activities of utilities in Arkansas states:
“An applicant for a certificate shall file with the Arkansas Public Service Commission a verified application in such form as the commission may prescribe and containing the following information: (6) An analysis of the projected economic or financial impact on the applicant and the local community where the facility is to be located as a result of the construction and the operation of the proposed facility;”
One of the difficulties of this statement of Arkansas law is that the word community may be interpreted 6 different ways. However, the word local brings it into perspective. If a person has not had the experience of living in a local community with its own set of particular values as to what folks care most specifically for within the confines of a particular place, they may not be able to understand the implications of what they might propose on those folks comprising a "local community"

In any case, my surrebuttal is finished and will be submitted as is required by noon today.

Coming into contact with a company like AEP-SWEPCO and its witnesses and engineers has brought the subject of and the value of local community under a bright lens. Too many folks have become out of touch. They don't know what being involved in local community can bring. Being involved in a local community can lead one to want to share something with others in it.

Years ago, a friend of mine had told me a strange story about homesteading in Gilbert, Arkansas in the 1930s with her first husband. They were young and bought a small home and acreage and planned to farm. Folks began to arrive and began taking things from them. When Virginia asked why so many things were being stolen from them, a neighbor replied, "When you come here, what's yours is ours. But what you make of being here is yours." That sounds like other worldly advice and completely foreign. But if you think at the heart of it, you can see that to become a member of a community requires that you give all of yourself to it. Can you imagine a world in which each of us cared so deeply for each other that we held nothing back? It was the price of admission to Gilbert, Arkansas and it is the full price of admission to most real communities in America. Give all that you've got, then...

Make, fix and create...

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