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LETTER: Spreading Misinformation Is Worse Than No Information At All

The CPA article in the March 9 Groton Herald covering the Select Board's March 2nd meeting misstated the current rate at which the State of Massachusetts matches Groton's contribution to the Community Preservation Act (CPA). The article states the most recent year's match rate to be 19%.
     In fact the state's match rate of 37.95 is double the rate, which is misstated in the article.
     The value of a local paper is to keep citizens informed, and the Herald has done a good job of this. But spreading misinformation is worse than no information at all. The idea that there is a pathetically low match rate on our CPA contribution has become gospel for many in town.
     It has been restated by Select Board members and countless others in the community to the point where it has now led some leaders to demand reconsideration of Groton's participation in the CPA program.
     There is no reason that this misunderstanding should persist and it is inexcusable that the Herald is helping to perpetuate it, albeit unintentionally.
     We have too many examples of issues being decided by emotion and misinformation, both nationally and locally. We may have little ability to control the former, but the later is our responsibility. I urge the Herald to take the steps necessary to prevent this from happening again, and for us all to demand good and accurate information from our elected officials and from each other.
Jack Petropoulos
[Editors Note: A summary of the state CPA match for 2015-2019, for 3% and 1% surtaxes, is posted in the SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENTS (Inside Edition) section of this week's Groton Herald. Thanks to Jack Petropoulos for catching our mistake.] 
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