Letters to the Editor

Letter: Lies by the one percent

October 31, 2014 — 

Lies by the 1 percent

Please remember, whenever you see one of those lying ads on television about Sen. Mark Udall, remember that those people who say those ridiculous things are only actors who are being paid by the 1 percent of the 1 percent of the 1 percent to lie to people like you and me.

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Letter: If GMO crops are healthy, then label them

October 31, 2014 — 

If GMO crops are healthy, then label them

The Associated Press article that ran in the Oct. 26 edition of the Aspen Daily News (“Maui voters get to decide whether to ban GMO crops”) appeared to be an editorialized-style infomercial to undermine the GMO labeling initiative. The article contained the statement: “There has been little scientific evidence showing foods grown from GMO seeds are less safe than their conventional counterparts. But fears persist in Hawaii and elsewhere.” That is opinion in the most liberal interpretation. There are many documented studies linking some GMO crops to serious health concerns. I have recently seen similar articles in other newspapers with a similar paragraph inserted, which leads one to suspect an organized campaign of this style is being run by those GMO inventors, producers and giant food companies that don’t think people are entitled to know what type of food they are buying. Please be careful in the selection of AP articles that you chose to run. It is purported that the genetically modified pro-agri giants are spending more than $20 million in Oregon and Colorado to defeat the right to know labeling measures on the Nov. 4 ballots. The cost to label is reported to be less than $1 per person per year. It seems to me that If GMO crops were so healthy and equal to organically grown ones, their producers would be proud to label them.

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Letter: Asking for your vote

October 31, 2014 — 

Asking for your vote

To earn the honor of a person’s vote, you must spend time learning about their hopes and concerns while collaborating with them on ideas to lift up our communities. I have spent the past year reaching out to voters in Senate District 5, one-on-one on their porches or over the phone, working with them on a plan to create an economy that works for everyone and not just those at the very top. That’s what I will continue to do if you elect me as your next state senator.

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Letter: Clearing up inaccuracies in Daily News article

October 31, 2014 — 

Clearing up inaccuracies in Daily News article

I wanted to reply to several inaccuracies and misrepresentations made by Carolyn Sackariason at the Aspen Daily News in her articles regarding Aspen Valley Hospital and how we manage “M1” patients, or patients who require a mental-health hold. She implied that most M1 patients are taken to jail and that Aspen Valley Hospital has not been responsive to the needs of M1 patients. That is blatantly false. In fact, AVH manages and holds all M1 patients, except those who are too violent to be in our facility. There have been two occasions of note where my fellow physicians and staff nurses have been assaulted and injured by violent individuals. It is not only our responsibility to protect and provide a safe environment for these patients when we can, but it is also our responsibility that we protect our other patients and our own staff.

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Letter: Vote for Bill Boineau for council

October 31, 2014 — 

Vote for Bill Boineau for council

I have known Bill Boineau for 2-plus years and I am honored to call him my friend. He has been there for me more times than I can count. His positive attitude is something I have always admired.

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Letter: Vote for Clapper

October 31, 2014 — 

Vote for Clapper

Please vote for Patti Clapper to represent us on the Board of County Commissioners. Please do not vote for Rob Ittner. In August, Ittner voted to approve a huge land-use variance opposite Holland Hills. He ignored the representatives of more than 140 local residents as well as the mayor of Basalt, who spoke in opposition to this plan in a packed four-hour meeting. Most people opposing were simply against the variance, which expanded the allowed buildings from 12,000 total square feet to 25,000 square feet, plus 11,000 square feet of supporting structures — on four acres of land. This was a very big change in land use on a highly visible property. Local residents felt it would change the character of the neighborhood permanently. Within a couple of months, ttner voted to deny a requested variance just six miles up the valley, which only asked for an extra 12,000 square feet on 35 acres. He appears to justify such inconsistency by explaining that a caucus was involved in opposing the second application that he voted to deny, but not in the first, which he voted to approve. I would like us to have a commissioner who listens to constituents whether or not they are part of a caucus. Patti Clapper has demonstrated this ability in the past. Please vote for her.

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Letter: Ittner has the qualifications for commissioner

October 31, 2014 — 

Ittner has the qualifications for commissioner

Having reviewed the current needs of the county and having considered my list of the essential characteristics and qualifications of the candidates for the position for District 1 on the five-member board (listed below), I support Rob Ittner for the position of Pitkin County Commissioner.

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Letter: Vote for experience and commitment

October 31, 2014 — 

Vote for experience and commitment

Kerry Donovan grew up in the Gore Creek and Eagle River valleys and witnessed the dramatic changes here. Due to her experience, she has an intuitive understanding of the complexities of resource management and the balance of recreation, agriculture and development. Her insight as someone who has been involved in such change is extremely valuable to the future of the Western Slope.

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Letter: No birth, no child

October 31, 2014 — 

No birth, no child

In case people have been taken in by the obfuscation and misdirection, I want to point out that this year’s ballot contains an inappropriate question, because it is a religious one. The proponents of the ballot question are once again trying to have the state of Colorado enforce a religious belief on all its citizens.

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Letter: Twisted out of context

October 31, 2014 — 

Twisted out of context

I respectfully ask the voters of Pitkin County to support my reelection to the Board of County Commissioners. As a commissioner, I have worked with my colleagues on the board to bring constructive discussions to the commissioners’ deliberations and sought balanced decision-making on issues confronting our community. My understanding of accounting and of the importance of our tourism economy, combined with the human and leadership skills I have acquired over 16 years of growing a business and providing employment for many in Pitkin County, are all important attributes that I bring to the board.

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Letter: A vote for Jeanne is a vote for local youth

October 29, 2014 — 

A vote for Jeanne is a vote for local youth

The Eagle River Youth Coalition was founded in 2001 with the goal of bringing various youth serving organizations together to more effectively assess and meet the changing needs of local youth. Our motto for the past several years has been “Making Youth a Community Priority.” Since 2006, Jeanne McQueeney has been a part of our organization’s board, and she absolutely embodies the idea of making our local youth a top community priority.

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Letter: Civil discourse starts at home

October 29, 2014 — 

We have an election coming up, and some people say the most preposterous stuff. There are at least four things that concern me about this. First, these folks may actually believe what they say and others may, too. Second, Pitkin County is a small community and many of the most egregious statements are about members of our own community. Third, these kinds of attacks are no longer limited to campaign season, they seem to be non-stop, year-round, year in and year out. Finally, if we want civil discourse in Washington, we’ve got to learn how to speak respectfully about one another in Pitkin County.

As Republicans in Pitkin County, we’ve become used to being called “racists,” either directly or by code names such as “poll tax” supporters or vote suppressors. Or we’re told that we’re racist because we disagree with the policies of the current president. We heard plenty of this at the Aspen Saturday Market this summer and in homes here in the valley.

We’re also called crazies. John Colson had a column in The Aspen Times last week that was stunningly incorrect about Ronald Reagan’s policies on mental-health treatment centers. That would be bad enough, but he ended his column with the following, “And, more importantly, how many of our uncared-for, mentally ill citizens are Republicans themselves, and therefore responsible for their own predicament?” I realize there are a couple of ways of interpreting that statement, but mental illness is a terrible affliction, not to be trifled with in any way to score political points or otherwise.

Then there’s the recent email circulated by two of our neighbors in Old Snowmass and Woody Creek to people they believe have political views similar to their own. The email is addressed to “All High IQ Voters,” implying that those who do not agree with the writers’ political perspective are dummies. It’s not surprising that some people believe they’re intellectually superior to others, but it is surprising that they’re advertising it.

There’s a column by Mick Ireland in one of the local papers, fulminating about the various Republican candidates in this year’s election. It would take a volume to address all the false statements and innuendos in the column, but one that stands out is Mick’s series of accusations concerning a political event held at Rob Ittner’s restaurant. Mick argues that by allowing Bob Beauprez, the Republican candidate for Governor, to hold a “fundraiser” at the restaurant, Rob lent support to the candidate’s positions.

This is not true, and I would know because I arranged the April 2 event. It was a meet-and-greet, not a fundraiser for the candidate, who at that time was running for the Republican nomination in the June 24 primary. We did the same for other candidates who were vying in the Republican primary. The candidates all paid the restaurant’s bills. There was no financial support from Rob. Mick wasn’t at the Beauprez event, although he would have been welcome at this public gathering. On the other hand, perhaps Mick attended the private fundraisers (not meet-and-greets) that have taken place at Rob’s restaurant for John Hickenlooper, Gail Schwartz, Bill Clinton and Al Gore.

Many people ask me how they can possibly tell what’s true and what’s false in the propaganda that inevitably goes with political campaigns. My rule of thumb: If it sounds too bad to be true, it probably is false.

It’s possible that we will see a change in the U.S. Senate and the Colorado State House on November 4. If so, you can be assured that the Pitkin County Republicans will not forget that civil discourse starts at home.

Frieda Wallison

Old Snowmass, chair of the Pitkin County Republicans

Letter: 24-hour voting

October 29, 2014 — 

We basically have 24 hour a day voting available now until 7 p.m. Nov. 4. Voters can hand-deliver their mail-in ballot to the Pitkin County Clerk’s Office, located on Main Street next to the Courthouse in Aspen, 24 hours a day until Nov. 4. Voters can just slip in their mail ballot through the Pitkin Clerk’s secure mail-in ballot slot at the clerk’s front door or during business hours Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

If you lost or did not receive your ballot, you can go to the Pitkin County Clerk’s Office and they will cancel your lost ballot, hand you a new one and you can vote right away.

Additionally, we now have same day voter registration in Colorado, eligible residents with a picture ID can register to vote and vote in the same day all the way up until Nov. 4.

So no more excuses, get your mail-in ballots off your kitchen table and go vote today.

Blanca Uzeta O’Leary

Chair, Pitkin County Democratic Party

Letter: Open city board seats

October 29, 2014 — 

The city of Aspen has two open seats on both the Planning and Zoning and Historic Preservation Commission boards. I would like to encourage any interested residents to apply. Both boards are served on by great volunteers giving their time and concern selflessly.

City Council has always sought to appoint a balance of professional knowledge and community representation. Both boards have seven appointees, of which three are desired to have a broad range of related work experience, the other four appointees are community members with the desire to volunteer. Right now both boards are well served by knowledgable professionals, but have openings for interested residents.

If you have the availability, and want to experience a really stimulating, important volunteer opportunity, I encourage you to contact the City Clerk office or go on line to submit an application.

Torre

Aspen

Letter: Vote McQueeney for commissioner

October 29, 2014 — 

Very rarely can we make a lasting difference with an action that takes just a few minutes, but right now you can drop your ballot marked Jeanne McQueeney for county commissioner in the ballot box and do just that — make a lasting difference.

I’ve known Jeanne for nearly two decades, we have worked on various initiatives in both good times and trying times. What never ceases to amaze me is Jeanne’s laser vision for the big picture, never getting bogged down with the trying moments that can go along with public service or any job for that matter. Jeanne has dedicated her entire adult life to serving her community and the individuals that reside within it with a selfless commitment that is rare to see today.

Jeanne has a depth of experience, overseeing a budget even larger than Eagle County’s for several years, while working through complex staffing dynamics, budget cuts and the need to identify priorities that make the biggest impact in our lives and our community.

While I could write a novel about Jeanne McQueeney’s attributes and why I know she is the best candidate for our next county commissioner, I can simply say that Jeanne is the epitome of integrity, honesty, grounded intelligence and commitment to community.

Dropping your ballot off at the county building from now until Nov. 4 will make a difference ­— for you, for your county and for all of the people that reside within it. Please vote Jeanne McQueeney for Commissioner, and please don’t delay!

Liz McGillvray

Eagle

Letter: Letter about Ittner is erroneous

October 29, 2014 — 

The recent letter from Cavanaugh O’Leary regarding alleged unfairness on the part of Rob Ittner is complete nonsense and erroneous in its details. In any land-use application, the applicant is typically given the time they need to present the project. Public comment is typically limited to a shorter amount of time to present favorable or opposing comments. Moreover, Ittner reviewed the meeting protocol with the entire board in advance and received their suggestions, which were incorporated into the meeting protocol. Plus, it should be said that the board had heard this particular issue regarding the Celestial house three times, as the opponents pursued their endless appeals. This issue has been dominated by a small group unfortunately associated with my Democratic Party, which suggests to me that these elections should be completely non-partisan. This so-called “monster house” is smaller than zoning would allow and much smaller than the huge Pritzker compound right next door, which also is subject to and mitigated for avalanche hazards and a debris flow. In fact, the Celestial development has been approved three times now by the Board of County Commissioners and twice by hearing officers appointed by the county, but the neighbor has been relentless in its opposition and has reached out to an astonishing group of unaffected persons through party affiliation. You may want to consider whether it would be better to have an independent-thinking commissioner or a proxy for special interests.

Stan Clauson

Aspen

Letter: Gasoline prices: Where is the outrage?

October 29, 2014 — 

Residents of this valley are being fleeced by greedy oil marketers. Some of our politicians welcome the fact (especially the mayor of Aspen) believing that high prices will promote increased use of mass transit. One can only wonder if these politicians are being paid off by greedy oil companies.

A headline in the Wall Street Journal stated “Gasoline prices have dropped below $3 a gallon at most U.S. gas stations.” The author obviously did not visit the valley. (In fairness, I must note he did call me and quote me because I guess I qualify as an expert.)

The question is why do the gasoline marketers in the valley get away with this grand larceny?

The answer is that they do this because they can. The profits are going to Houston, not to the owner of the stations in Aspen, Basalt and Carbondale. Each station operator pays a price that is unique to her or his situation. The profits all go to the companies such as Phillips 66 — the firm that supplies the Conoco stations. If a renegade firm such as Costco charges low prices then the suppliers will make sure their stations nearby (for example, Gypsum), can buy at a price which allows them to compete.

These firms will not, though, extend the discount to the Conoco station at the Aspen Business Center. The operator there may pay $1 per gallon more for its supplies than the operator at Gypsum. Why are the prices so different? The words “profit maximization,” “greed” and “indifference” come to mind. Oil companies do this because they can, especially if local politicians look the other way.

There is one individual in the valley who could, if he cared, address the issue. He is the mayor of Aspen. However, he clearly does not care if you pay $1,000, $2,000 or $3,000 more per year for gasoline than you should. He wants you to take the Roaring Fork Transportation Authority buses or ride your bicycle. Never mind that it is easier to take children in a car, especially if going downvalley to Willits to the good stores or running errands. He apparently does not understand that he is destroying your wealth.

Other politicians in the country have acted to save their constituents 20 cents per gallon. Ask your mayor why he does not care if you are robbed of $1 per gallon and a few thousand dollars per year. He may not get a penny in contributions from the oil companies, but he is in their pocket. He is owned by oil.

Philip K. Verleger

Carbondale

Letter: Not surprised

October 28, 2014 — 

Recently, I submitted a letter that must have been crowded out by seasonal election endorsement letters. My letter asked why Cty Manager Steve Barwick deflects responsibility for the debacle in the Parking Department. Barwick blamed the department manager exclusively. He didn’t say, “It is my ultimate responsibility. Obviously, I didn’t supervise the department adequately.” He just threw the department manager under the bus and then recommended hiring the same auditors who didn’t catch the multi-year problem over years of city audits.

The last point is more than irresponsible. As I pointed out in my unpublished letter, in the city’s 2009-promulgated financial policy statement, someone substituted the city manager for the City Council as the party responsible for appointing auditors and defining their work. The policy repeats verbatim the city charter on this point except that it substitutes the city manager for the City Council on this point. When the city manager believes he has usurped the audit authority from City Council, he must feel bulletproof.

Now, the city manager proposes that the City Council adopt a budget that includes $750,000 to build a tail race at the end of the penstock. That is the penstock the city built using misrepresentations about the need for a drain line from Thomas Reservoir — drain line that no safety agency has suggested unless the energy center (hydro) on Castle Creek were put into operation. When I asked about this, I was told the city had obtained a “new report.” Why am I not surprised?

I have asked to see the new report and the supporting information, such as what assumptions did the city give to the inspector or did the inspector make that could lead to this change when nothing physical has changed? I haven’t got the information yet but let me make a suggestion to the City Council.

I will say what few will say in public. We need a different city manager. Someone from the outside who will find and cure whatever problems the current lack of management has created, parking among them. Departments that don’t tell City Council the whole truth all the time among them. And save that $750,000. You might need it to pay off the city manager’s contract, ridiculously secure for a city manager we really need to replace.

Maurice Emmer

Aspen

October 28, 2014 — 

As Founder of Aspen Ute Foundation, I would like to share this letter written by Gregory G Gomez MSSW, Lipan Mescalero Apache who is the President of Indigenous Institute of the Americas, sent to the Foundation to share an Indigenous point of view on the Christopher Columbus misconception:

October 12, 1492 Columbus sailed the Ocean Blue.. Got lost and Was Discovered by Peaceful Indigenous Peoples of the islands of the American coast.

1) He was looking for a way to the spice islands.

2) Hindustan (Hindi People) were not known as Indian, until the East India British Company established trade in the 1700’s.

3) Columbus journals show his writing as He and His Men Being Treated as Christians by the Natives and he used the term “En Dios” which in English became “In Dios”.

4) That is where the Term/word/misconception of INDIAN comes from as opposed that Columbus was looking for India (Hindustan).

5) The unfortunate Reality is his next trip he and his men started torturing, killing, taking slaves, raping our women and way of life...

6) Many non Indian people have continued that attitude/ treatment through today.

7) Indigenous people throughout the Americas are disenfranchised.

8) In the USA we are not allowed to be part of main stream America in the Media, TV, Radio, Music, Movies, Theater, Corporations, Medical...etc

9) Not because we don’t want to or don’t Qualify but because we aren’t given the chance and support to prove ourselves.

10) SO for us “Columbus Day/Dia de la Raza” is another means of denying truth and equity.

AHO I HAVE SPOKEN

Deanne Vitrac-Kessler

Founder Aspen Ute Foundation

Letter: Don’t waive parking requirements

October 28, 2014 — 

Don’t waive parking requirements

I’m pleading with you not to waive parking requirements at Mark Hunt’s lodges dubbed “Base 1” and “Base 2.” I live in town, and there is virtually no parking. In addition, employees who work in town display placards on their rearview mirrors taking up what few parking spaces there are in town every day, all year during working hours. Where do people park when they come to town and can’t always walk from the public underground garage? Isn’t Aspen a tourist town? Don’t we want to please visitors? Do you need to give in to developers’ wishes? It seems to me that putting in less expensive hotel rooms would mean that the people staying in these rooms would not be flying into Aspen but rather driving because it’s less expensive. Where will they park? Where will “employees” park who will be living in these new units which Hunt wishes to build? Once again, I ask that you not waive code requirements. Those of us living in and around Aspen will thank you for being so courageous.

Thank you for your time,

Susan Fleet Welsch

Aspen

Letter: The Frying Pan pumpkin fairy

October 28, 2014 — 

The Frying Pan pumpkin fairy

I am a local from Basalt and I live on the Frying Pan Road. You can ask anyone on the Frying Pan about the pumpkins. I know the answer to these mysterious pumpkins. The answer is quite simple: the Pumpkin Fairy, as she is called. She comes along the road and sets up pumpkins for people to spot. This fairy secretly decorates your house around Halloween. Every time she has decorated my house, I am thrilled. Everyone loves this yearly tradition. So please I ask you to not stay up at night to watch to see if she comes, not that you wanted to, but leave this tradition be. My friends who live on the road including Ruby Haden and Lexi Mobray care for this tradition. So come up the Frying Pan and enjoy spotting the pumpkins.

Samantha Waller

Basalt

Letter: Preventive care reduces need for medical care

October 28, 2014 — 

“I would prefer for my son to have as little medical care as possible, as little contact with the medical system as possible. I think vaccination is actually one way to try to help ensure that — making sure that he doesn’t get something like pneumonia that might mean a hospital stay” — Eula Biss, author of “On Immunity: An Inoculation” during NPR interview.

• Children commonly need medical care because of influenza, especially before they turn 5 years old.

• Severe influenza complications are most common in children younger than 2 years old.

• Each year, an average of 20,000 children under age 5 are hospitalized because of influenza complications.

The single best way to protect your children from the flu is to get them vaccinated each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control website.

“Support Community Immunity! Even if you are young and healthy, you could be a carrier of the flu virus this season! Protect the children and old ones you love, and get your flu shot!” — Emily Taylor, E.D., of the Woody Creek Community Center.

Do not let vaccination fears fuel the resurgence of preventable diseases, such as seasonal flu. Please protect yourself, your children and your community: Get your flu shot and see that your children 6 months old or older get the shot (or the mist) too.

Some options for flu shots:

• Your doctor’s office

• Pharmacies in Clark’s Market, City Market, Safeway and Rite-Aid.

• Woody Creek Community Center: Free flu shot clinic today 7 to 10 a.m.; Mists for children will be available.

Pitkin County Community Health Services, public flu shot clinic, Thursday 3 to 6 p.m. at Snowmass Village Town Council Chambers, 130 Kerns Road, Snowmass Village.

• Flu shots are also available through the county by appointment.

Call 970-920-5420 for more information.

Thank You,

Peg O’Brien

Woody Creek

Letter: Sue Franciose is the best choice

October 28, 2014 — 

My husband and I have known Sue Franciose for six years. During that time, we have seen Sue work diligently in our community to help others. My husband is a physician, and I worked for years in critical care, trauma and oncology as a nurse. Sue’s medical background is impressive, and it does make a difference to have the experience and knowledge to assist families during their crisis and be qualified to answer the medical questions that come up. She did this during her 20 years of working in the medical field as a critical care nurse and as a cardiac perfusionist. She worked directly with organ/tissue transplants as a member of the harvest, transplant and research teams. She supports this program and wants to make sure that all registered donors have their chance to donate. She has made a difference in the community with her role with Eagle County Hospice, Salvation Army and the board at the Shaw Cancer Center, raising money to build Jack’s Place, a cancer-caring home, making sure that cancer patients have a place to stay and also raising money for the medical equipment the allows patients to receive their cancer treatment here in our county instead of going to Denver. When Sue sees an opportunity to make a difference in our community, she jumps in, and that’s why she is running for the coroner position. As a former deputy coroner, she sees what has been done and wants to do more. In addition to performing the job as coroner, she wants to make sure that all registered donors have the opportunity to donate, educate the community with preventative and informative topics, educate the deputy coroner’s and first responder groups and provide a brochure for the families of the deceased with important information and resources. She wants to take the position to a higher level. Go to www.suefranciose.com to see her background and vision. Please join us in voting for Sue Franciose.

Dawn and Frank Holmes

Eagle

Letter: Patti is nobody’s fool

October 28, 2014 — 

Over the years, I’ve served on several committees with Patti Clapper, and my takeaway is that Patti actually knows how local government works and why. And Patti knows for whom government should work for: Us. Hell, Patti’s already taken on the federal government on behalf of her own neighborhood, so you can bet she will fight hard for yours.

Patti has great experience in office, experience informed by living the challenges of this community and meeting them head on. That experience helps Patti make decisions on our behalf and with the broad community’s values in mind.

Patti is thoughtful, whip-smart and savvy. I don’t agree with every decision Patti has made (I bet she doesn’t either), but I know her votes, especially the tough ones, are well reasoned and made on behalf of the many, not the few.

I’ll be marking my ballot for Patti Clapper, as she’s nobody’s fool. More importantly, she won’t try to fool us.

Jack Johnson

Aspen

Letter: Willard’s sky

October 28, 2014 — 

How about that absolutely crystal clear, robin-blue sky Saturday? Every time another one appears, let’s all say, “Hi Willard, thank you (for everything).”

Jane Click

Aspen

Letter: Bettis has the right experience

October 28, 2014 — 

I am writing this letter in support of Kara Bettis’ re-election bid for Eagle County coroner. I have had the opportunity to work with Kara at various times during the past 12 years. I find Kara to be professional and compassionate in her position as coroner. This job has to be one of the more difficult yet important positions in the county, which truly serves people.

Kara certainly has the experience, education and credentials necessary for this position. She cares about the community and the people she works for and with.

Keep experience in your Coroner’s Office, and vote for Kara Bettis.

Mark Chapin

Eagle

Letter: School solution

October 27, 2014 — 

Lunch duty: Stacey Craft should be in charge of the parents who volunteer. Former Principal Betsy Hill said the teachers and administrators need this volunteer time.

Traffic problems: No students should be allowed to drive to school, and student drop-off needs to be off district property. Believe me, the kids will start taking the bus.

Finally, after teaching here from 1971 to 2002, something is being done, hopefully, to increase the students’ math ability.

Ruth Harrison

Aspen

Letter: Rob Ittner is the kind of leader we need

October 27, 2014 — 

Rob Ittner is the kind of leader we need

I write to express support for Rob Ittner’s reelection to the Board of County Commissioner.

Rob is an outdoor enthusiast who loves our valley and the nature that surrounds us. I’ve hiked with him, skied with him, and discussed difficult environmental issues with him. Rob has worked hard to protect the Thompson Divide from future oil and gas development. Rob’s actions (and votes) speak for his respect for our valley.

Rob’s commitment to our community and the welfare of the people who live in it also speaks for itself. He voted to increase the “Healthy Community Fund”. He is active in Rotary, the premiere service organization in the valley which raises approximately $250,000 each year that goes to support youth sports like junior hockey, youth golf, gymnastics, AVSC, Boy Scouts, as well as Raise-A-Reader, English in Action, and many other valley organizations. He helped found Aspen Young Professionals Association – with the goal of supporting a community of young people who will stay here to build careers and keep our community vibrant. He has volunteered as a big buddy in the Buddy Program. Rob’s actions (and votes) speak for his deep caring about the citizens of this valley.

Rob has successful business and leadership experience. Rob started as a young professional in this town and made smart decisions, sacrificed, and built a successful and respected business. He knows how to write a budget, manage resources, and build a loyal staff who stays with him year after year because he takes care of people. The BOCC oversees a $90 million budget and approximately 250 employees. Rob’s success story speaks to his ability to lead the business of our county.

Rob is moderate, thoughtful, accessible, and humble. He is standing on that street corner day in and day out because he wants to earn your support and respect. He does not think the seat belongs to him or that the community owes him a job. He has been successful – and he offers his skills and abilities to better his community.

Please vote for Rob and encourage your friends to do the same — he is the kind of leader we want and need in local government.

Peter Waanders

Aspen

Letter: Ambulance District should be commended

October 27, 2014 — 

Ambulance District should be commended

The Pitkin County Public Safety Council would like to express their support for ballot initiative 1A, which would increase funding for the Aspen Ambulance District. The Public Safety Council is a collaborative group representing a diverse range of public and private entities that address public health and safety issues in Pitkin County.

Since 1982 the ambulance district has provided top notch services to our community without once asking for an increase in funding. Their dedication to fiscal responsibility, while maintaining high quality services, is to be commended.

The Aspen Ambulance District logs over 1,000 calls each year. In addition, they are proactively involved in community events, CPR/AED trainings, purchasing AEDs for local businesses and assisting with special events planning. Whether you experience it first hand, or not, each day they are creating a safer environment for every person who lives, works and plays in Aspen.

Members of the Aspen Ambulance District go above and beyond to serve their community each day. Please vote yes on ballot initiative 1A to ensure this level of service is maintained in our community.

Scott Thompson

Chairperson, Pitkin County Public Safety Council

Letter: Vote Bob Sirkus for Snowmass Town Council

October 27, 2014 — 

Bob is fair, he listens, he works at building consensus — all the qualities we need for Snowmass Village Town Council.

Bob is a businessman, not a politician. His experience as Planning and Zoning chairman shows his ability to work through tough issues facing Snowmass Village.

Vote for Bob, he’ll do a great job.

Gary Hartman

Snowmass Village

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