Burlingame petition faces challenge | AspenTimes.com

Burlingame petition faces challenge

Eben Harrell

An affordable housing activist has filed a protest against a petition that would force a vote on the city’s annexation of the Burlingame site, charging that voters have already approved the housing project.Burlingame proponent Frank Peters, a former city councilman, said an effort by anti-Burlingame forces to overturn the city’s annexation of the Bar/X Ranch through a special election this summer is an “abuse of the democratic process.”The Bar/X Ranch is a crucial piece of property for the Burlingame affordable housing project. It was annexed from Pitkin County by the Aspen City Council, a move Aspen residents approved in an advisory vote in 2000. Burlingame opponents Terry Paulson and Toni Kronberg have collected enough valid signatures to hold a special initiative election this summer to vote on the annexation of the ranch.Peters pointed out that such a vote took place five years ago. He also said Aspen voters will have a chance to vote on the annexation for a second time in the upcoming May 3 election because City Council placed the question on the ballot.”The idea that this question could pass in May and then we’d vote for the third time on the same question this summer is pretty outrageous. This is an abuse of the democratic process. At some point we have to have closure,” he said.No date for a hearing on the protest has been set, but it will likely occur shortly after the May 3 election.Eben Harrell’s e-mail address is eharrell@aspentimes.com