Author Archives: gracny

About gracny

We are a group of Groton residents interested in raising public awareness of issues related to gas drilling, including land leasing and the methods and risks involved with unconventional gas drilling (a.k.a. “hydrofracking” or “fracking”). We believe that all of our neighbors, whether their land is leased or not, value clean drinking water, clean air, and the recreational opportunities and quality of life in Groton, NY.

An open letter from Kelly and Neil

Dear Groton Neighbors,

We are running for two seats on the Groton Town Board because we are concerned about many issues that the current Town Board has failed to address. The current Board members have become complacent, no longer responding to the community’s needs and concerns.  The legacy of the Town Board incumbents is years of neglect.  Groton deserves better and needs change!

While all other towns in Tompkins County have recognized the dangers of  hydro-fracking and have prohibited the process, the current Groton Town Board has failed to act. In states where fracking is occurring, there is evidence of water pollution and plummeting property values; the current Board refuses to respond to our concerns despite the fact that nearly 1000 Groton residents have signed a petition asking the Board to ban hydraulic fracturing.

People pay relatively high taxes to live here and have the right to enjoy the peace and quiet of their property. Local zoning regulations protect some, but not enough, of those rights. Zoning needs to be strong, logical, and enforceable, especially when addressing public nuisances such as noise and traffic.  The Town Board incumbents have repeatedly refused to address either issue.

Despite laws which require government to be open and transparent, most issues effecting our town are discussed behind closed doors and through private emails. Most public board meetings last a matter of minutes, during which most agenda items are never discussed.  We will strive to improve the lines of communication when it comes to town matters. We promise to remain accessible to all the residents of Groton and will listen to your concerns.

We love the beautiful, tranquil, rural character of Groton, but it needs revitalization.  We will work hard to protect our community assets and strive to improve what could be better. By promoting healthy hometown values, and by listening to you, we hope to unify and strengthen our community.

To change Groton politics and chart a positive course for the future, please vote for us on November 5th!

Thank you,

Kelly Smith and Neil Snyder



Exhibition at the Main Street Gallery on October 19

Fracking Drill_Elm Tree_POSTER_FINAL_Email Invite_CroppedThe newly reopened Main Street Gallery (105 Main St., Groton) will host a GRAC fundraiser on October 19 from 6 – 11pm. The event will be hosted by Jeff Toolan and will feature the work of Groton photographer Glen M. Sanders.

The image on the right will be printed as a limited-edition poster and sold in black-and-white ($10) and color ($25) versions, with a portion of the proceeds benefitting GRAC.

This event is important both for GRAC and as an important step in revitalizing downtown Groton. We hope to see you there!

Coffee with the candidates on Saturday, Oct. 5

BunAppetitKelly Smith and Neil Snyder, candidates for the Groton Town Board, will be at Bun Appetit (215 Main St., Groton) on Saturday, October 5, from 10am to noon.

Kelly and Neil believe that the Town Board should be a resource committed to benefitting Groton residents. Come and share your thoughts about the challenges facing Groton and your hopes for Groton’s future.

An introduction to Neil Snyder, candidate for town board


I love the beauty and rural character of Groton and I am grateful to those who have preserved the land. I will serve Groton residents with energy, commitment, and integrity. I will work to preserve our peaceful and clean environment for all those who live here.


  • Business management and leadership skills
  • Lifetime of community service
  • Work with youth as a Sunday school teacher and in the Ithaca school district

Groton is at a crossroads.  We have important choices before us. We can choose to build our economic strengths while preseving the rural character we cherish or we can choose the short-term gains from fracking while paying a staggering long-term economic and environmental price.

I will build on Groton’s strengths to:

  • Promote local businesses and new opportunities in green technologies
  • Protect our town by limiting heavy industry
  • Maintain opportunities for youth recreation

I will lead us down a path toward sensible noise regulations so that residents can enjoy the peace and quiet of their own homes instead of noise from sound systems miles away.  I will improve residents’ access to a more transparent and open government, in which discussions and work meetings are held in public.

I look forward to speaking with you about our hopes for Groton’s future. I want to hear from you. Please let me know what you want for Groton’s future and what issues concern you.  How can we work together to maintain Groton’s peaceful rural character while creating a more vital economy?

Email me at

An introduction to Kelly Smith, candidate for town board


As a Groton native, I love the beauty of our countryside and will strive to preserve our surroundings, strengthen our community, and revitalize our streets. I will serve this town with honesty and integrity, working to protect all that is great about Groton and to improve what could be better.

I bring the following experience:

  • Longterm knowledge of the community and its changes and challenges
  • Background in finance and excellent attention to detail
  • Information and service skills

With the possibility of large-scale industrialization brought by high-volume hydraulic fracturing (fracking) on the horizon, the inertia of our current town board will lead to drastic changes in our way of life.  I will vote to ban fracking and will do everything possible to protect Groton’s water, land, and quality of life.

I will work to protect Groton’s assets:

  • Preserve our rural nature
  • Ensure affordable housing
  • Support the Youth Recreation Program
  • Promote services available in other parts of Tompkins county

I promise to:

  • Control heavy industry
  • Promote green jobs, solar initiaves, and energy efficiency
  • Address community issues, such as noise abatement, loss of businesses, and crime prevention
  • Establish a productive, inclusive, and transparent open government

I will work to improve:

  • Groton’s infrastructure, including roads and snow removal
  • Access to high-speed internet
  • Availability of community and local business news

I want to hear from you.  What issues most concern you?  What can we do to help Groton thrive?  Please contact me to share your thoughts or to help my campaign.

Email me at