To the editor:
The Other Paper website October 8, 2020, states that I “have been a long-time opponent of the Other Paper.” Nothing could be further from the truth.
For many years, until recently, I eagerly looked forward to the Other Paper each week, and I read it cover to cover. The reporters who attended our city meetings did an excellent job of reporting meetings with an independent eye and voice. I felt that the independent coverage of city meetings and events was important.
I liked the Legislative Update and the Counselor Corner. Editions from just a year ago are filled with South Burlington regular features: The Calendar, Public Library, Sports, Business, Around Town, Schools and Education, and Noteworthy. In addition, the OP offered events from the schools, Recreation Department, the Rotary Club and more.
I confess I was alarmed when the OP eliminated the website version of the OP, and I made an over hasty comment in a Facebook group I apologized publicly and to the Other Paper.
I did reach out to Other Paper publishers on Sept 11, out of concern for the direction the OP has taken recently. Greg Popa confirmed that “it is just that we’re not publishing the same Other Paper that existed prior to August 2018.”
I miss that Other Paper, The Other Paper we had for decades. I think the City has taken a good step creating the South Burlington Times to bring our community the news that The Other Paper used to provide. The Other Paper as now conceived does have a role in covering a few in-depth stories. Coverage of School Budget issues, and the Auclair property come to mind.
We have other news sources: Front Porch Forum, three South Burlington Facebook groups, and occasionally the BFP, Seven days, and VT Digger. But the “South Burlington Times” fills a gap left by The Other Paper policy change. SBT can also showcase other stories of interest in South Burlington. I hope our residents will support this city effort and help it grow.
Kochman was a contributor to the inaugural edition of The South Burlington Times.