Aspen’s future is now

Dear Editor:

In navigating the political landscape in the coming election, I would hope it would make you want to look at the issues at hand and then look at the candidates and try to determine those best suited for guiding us to viable solutions. Our current economy is not in the healthiest of states when it comes to jobs, wages, healthy businesses, opportunities in business for the next generation and long-term vitality in general.

We have lost and continue to lose lodging bed base. Operating a business is very challenging and getting more and more difficult and expensive. Our visitor numbers are not healthy, and with less and less lodging available, it doesn’t appear our tourism will sustain itself over the long term with what is happening (or not happening) in that arena.

Aspen’s economy is driven solely by our tourism, which is made up of visitors to lodges, hotels, condominiums, private homes, second homes, camping and day visitors. Our job market, tax revenue, business vitality, employee housing and overall health of Aspen is based on our ability to keep visitors coming at a desired rate that leads to a healthy, balanced economy. This is very important not only now but for the next generation, which deserves a chance to live in Aspen and sustain a decent living.

So when looking at the roster of contenders for our upcoming election, I feel a need to support those candidates with the most experience on the issues at hand and the strongest chance of getting our town back on track. I have no criticism of the work that’s been done to this point, but we are at a precarious time, when a change is needed. A strong business background is what we need at this juncture in order to deal with economic issues that are so paramount to Aspen. Especially now.

I feel strongly that Dwayne Romero and Derek Johnson have this knowledge, experience and ability to get Aspen on the right track. Art Daily is one of the most even-keeled, caring and intelligent people in Aspen. He sees the entire picture clearly. He will always be a voice of reason and would make a great councilman.

Ernie Fyrwald