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January 6, 2013
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A call for accountability

Dear Editor:

We should care about how our taxpayers' dollars are spent because apparently the Colorado Mountain College board of trustees does not. The board decided to accept the resignation of Stan Jensen as the college's president, and Jensen moves on with a $500,000 check. Residents in the community will be paying for this because part of the school revenue comes from our property tax payments.

I really can't grasp how these arrangements with public officials are made and how it is possible that people who quit their jobs can leave with a severance package. This isn't Goldman Sachs; this is a public college.

In this community (the one that includes all the counties that fiscally support CMC) - which is still coming out of the 2009 recession - some people have lost jobs or their houses. Many of those lucky enough to have jobs haven't seen raises in four years. So it is quite shocking to wake up to the news that we have paid $500,000 to Jensen (in addition to the $185,000 he got annually) to leave his job after only four years.

Of course the CMC board will decline comment on what really happened between it and Jensen, based on a confidentiality agreement. However, if Jensen did indeed resign to his job, why does he have to get a severance package? It was his choice.

If Jensen was let go because his actions were jeopardizing the college, he shouldn't be rewarded with a severance package.

I request that the CMC board be transparent about this issue and be accountable on why this happened. If they made a mistake hiring Jensen, they should be more careful in the future: There is a lot at stake when they choose somebody who in the end isn't a good fit. And since mistakes happen, they shouldn't risk this amount of taxpayers' dollars in a contract.

Another expense left behind by Jensen that taxpayers will have to pay for: the lawsuit over the SourceGas compressor station.

Veronica Whitney

Carbondale


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The Aspen Times Updated Jan 7, 2013 07:38AM Published Jan 6, 2013 11:11PM Copyright 2013 The Aspen Times. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.