Vermont resident Ted Pelkey has been trying to build a garage on his property for over ten years but local officials with the city of Westford have been rejecting his permit applications for years.
“I’ve been put through the wringer by these people, and it’s just not right. I haven’t been treated fairly at all,” Pelkey said.
As an act of revenge, Pelkey decided to build a giant middle finger statue on his property.
According to Boston.com, the wooden statue is 700 pound and is elevated into the air by a 16-foot pole. Pelkey even set up floodlights to illuminate the statue at night.
Pelkey recalled the moment he came up with the idea for the stunt, saying that “I was sitting at a bar and said to my wife, ‘Hey, I want to get a statue made of a middle finger, and I’m going to put it up on the lawn’… If you don’t want to look at the building, look at this.”
Pelkey had to shell out $4,000 to have the statue made, but he says that his act of rebellion was worth the cost.
Pelkey says that a member of the board has a grudge against him, but Allison Hope, chair of the Westford Selectboard made a statement denying these claims.
“We’re all professional adults in this realm who are volunteering our time and energy for the benefit of town residents… Even if one person on the DRB has had somewhat less than stellar interactions with a member of the public, it doesn’t mean they can’t deal with any applications that have to do with that person in an appropriate manner… From my own personal perspective and what I’ve seen/heard/read, the town staff and boards have been professional and appropriate toward the Pelkeys, almost to a fault,” the statement read.
Jacqui DeMen, a spokeswoman for the Vermont Agency of Transportation, says that there is nothing that can be done about Pelkey’s statue.
“Although the structure is visible from a state highway, it is outside of the State Right of Way and not within our jurisdiction. The structure does not meet the statutory definition of ‘sign’ and thus can’t be regulated under the Vermont Billboard Law,” DeMen said.
Even Allison Hope concluded that “He apparently can do what he’s done.”
Pelkey says that he hopes his neighbors understand that this middle finger is not directed at them, but the city officials who have made his life difficult.
“It was critical to me to make sure that my neighbors and the people who live in this town understood that I didn’t put that up there for them. It is aimed directly at the people who sit in our town office… I’m hoping that maybe some good comes out of it. Maybe,” Pelkey says.
Pelkey hopes that town officials might handle his case a bit differently at his next appeal, but until then, he says that the statue will stand.
Well…this is one way to handle the situation.A Vermont man put up this giant, wooden middle finger sculpture as a result of a dispute he's been having with his town officials.
Gepostet von KHQ Local News am Donnerstag, 13. Dezember 2018
Photo: Ted Pelkey