A hit piece on Marks

Dear Editor:

It is curious of the endorsement for mayor in the Aspen Daily News on April 30. Not because your endorsement of Mick Ireland (like we didn’t see that coming; Mick is your boy), but your plain, right-out lie coming out of City Hall regarding the alleged threat, by Marilyn Marks, to fire city of Aspen employees.

This very subject was broached at the Squirm Night and unequivocally denied as “untrue” by Ms. Marks. I would say that the accusation by the unnamed city employee, printed by your paper, is a borderline violation of Colorado election law. I would ask that the “sources inside City Hall” come forward and explain when and where this happened and what were the circumstances. I am sure that ADN will not expose their sources, so I would hope the paper would do the honorable thing and print a retraction and an apology BEFORE the election.

In addition, to label the call for a criminal investigation into the wasteful spending and voter misrepresentations of the Burlingame project “to be overtop and seen through ideological blinders” is the most moronic statement I have ever seen in the press. How can a paper justify the clear repeated (and illegal) misrepresentations by Ireland himself for his 2005 ballot issue committee and the city’s repeated voter communications (not just in brochure) which misleads the voters to the tune of $85 million of housing funds? Then to justify the tens of millions of overspending on the project that was approved on Mick’s watch.

And the most outrageous of all, the ADN turned a blind eye when Ireland fraudulently represented the results of the CPA’s Burlingame audit and failed to even note that action.

Also, Ms. Marks didn’t “raise hell” over Niece-gate. She asked if the mayor should recuse himself because of the gift to his niece. This an appropriate question, and I challenge anyone to look up in the Aspen Municipal Code (2.02.020) under “immediate family members” and “persons.” Also, in the city of Aspen Rules of Ethical Conduct handbook, it states “not just the conflict, but the appearance of a conflict.” Of course the city attorney found there was no conflict and used the Colorado statute as evidence of his findings. Oh, so now we ignore our own city statutes and use the states statutes. How convenient. As we know this is the same guy that turned down my request for an independent investigation into the Burlingame fiasco.

Lastly, I believe your endorsement is not an endorsement at all, but a cowardly and callous attack on Marilyn Marks.

James H. Perry