Commentary by John Vogel, Jun. 18, 2018, via Vermont Public Radio
In 1787, Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, and James Madison wrote a series of articles called the Federalist Papers in order to persuade citizens in the newly formed United States to adopt the U.S. Constitution. Madison argued passionately that adopting the Constitution would protect local citizens from tyranny, by restricting the role of the Federal Government.
In Federalist 39, James Madison wrote: ‘the proposed government cannot be deemed a national one; since its jurisdiction extends to certain enumerated objects only,’ leaving to the states, he concludes, an ‘inviolable sovereignty over all other objects.’ And I might argue that one of those inviolable objects would be regulating noise levels in their community.
Recently, the Burlington Airport unveiled noise mitigation maps showing that twenty six hundred homes would be eligible to receive new windows, extra insulation and other subsidies to lessen the impact from the F-35 fighter planes that will soon be flying overhead.
Public meetings convened to discuss the mitigation program were contentious. Residents pointed to recent studies showing how people who live or work in loud environments are particularly susceptible to a variety of physical, cognitive and emotional problems including high blood pressure and heart disease. They also pointed to the resolutions from the City Councils in Burlington, South Burlington and Winooski opposing the basing of the F-35s at Burlington Airport.