Council candidate insists she lives in Aspen | AspenTimes.com
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Council candidate insists she lives in Aspen

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ASPEN City Council candidate Toni Kronberg’s constant presence at a neighborhood on the outskirts of Aspen has cast doubt on whether she lives within city limits, a requirement to run for city office.Several residents at Aspen Village, outside the city limits, say Kronberg makes her home there, but the City Council candidate claims it’s where she keeps an office.She has rented the basement of Ken Bartle’s home for a few months and uses it primarily as an office and for storage.”I move around so much, so I store stuff there in the hopes that one day I will have my own home,” she said. “It’s tiny; it’s not my home. It has a concrete floor. … There is no bed there.”

Kronberg claims to live in a riverfront home in the posh Oklahoma Flats neighborhood, and her registered address with the City Clerk’s Office states that she lives at 230 N. Spring St. However, neighbors there said a man rented the home over the winter, and that there has been little activity there in recent weeks. In addition, the home appeared to be unlived-in during a visit early Friday afternoon. Kronberg said she leads a simple life and doesn’t own much stuff, which is why the Oklahoma Flats home looked barren.”I am a simple person; I live sparsely,” Kronberg said, adding that she swears she lives at 230 N. Spring St. “I’m an honest person.” Several sources over the past week have told The Aspen Times they have routinely seen Kronberg leaving Aspen Village early in the morning and going there at night on the RFTA bus.Denice Reich, a Denver-based real-estate agent who contributed last fall to the campaign against a proposed recycling center at Rio Grande Park, owns the Aspen home in which Kronberg claims to reside. The recycling center is directly across the river from Reich’s home.Kronberg led the fight against the city’s proposal to expand and cover the recycling center. The proposal failed at the polls in in November.In response to a question whether she publicly disclosed that she worked for Reich or lived in her residence while campaigning against the recycling center, Kronberg replied, “Don’t pick on me.”According to election law, any person who runs for public office in Aspen must have lived in the city for the past year. But Kronberg on Friday wouldn’t confirm if she has.”It’s none of your business where I lived [this past] winter,” she said Friday.On Sunday, Kronberg said she has lived in the city for the past year.

But Lauren Walkiewicz, who was a caretaker on a Woody Creek ranch Mark Pincus owns, said she rented to Kronberg in June 2006 – less than a year ago. Kronberg lived at the ranch off of Doc Henry Road in exchange for taking care of the property’s horses.Walkiewicz said it was about three weeks before she told Kronberg she had to leave because the owner needed the caretaker unit for guests. “She definitely was not in Aspen proper then,” Walkiewicz said. Jeff Wiltfang, Walkiewicz’s boyfriend, who lived on the Woody Creek ranch when Kronberg resided there, said she didn’t live “simply” or “sparsely.””Inside of three or four days of moving in, she had more crap than you can imagine that she packed into this place,” he said. “It was overflowing onto the porch.”Meanwhile, Reich didn’t return phone calls Friday or over the weekend. Kronberg was unable to produce proof of her residency at 230 N. Spring St. on Friday. But she said she would fax the Aspen Times office a letter from Reich saying she is a tenant.Kronberg said she couldn’t remember what form of proof she used when she registered to vote.City Clerk Kathryn Koch confirmed that Kronberg changed her address around the time she filed her petition to run for City Council. She listed 377 N. Spring St. as her former residence, a large riverfront property with a caretaker unit, which Reich also owns.Kronberg said she is a caretaker for Reich but hasn’t stayed at the property recently because of a stalker, against whom she has a restraining order.”You don’t find me in one place for a long time,” she said. “I’m on the move a lot.”She also said she hasn’t stayed at the Oklahoma Flats residence in the past because other people use the house.



“We have guests come in there all the time,” she said.Although she insists her permanent residence is 230 N. Spring St. and that she has lived in the city of Aspen for the past year, Kronberg admits she lives a seminomadic life.”I joke with people that I live in my mailbox,” Kronberg said, adding that her mail is delivered to an Aspen post office box.The questions surrounding Kronberg’s residency comes during her campaign for a June 5 runoff election. Kronberg got the third-highest vote in the May 8 election, with 487 votes (22 percent). Her opponent in the runoff election, Steve Skadron, received 862 votes (39 percent) in last week’s election. In order to win a seat on the City Council, a candidate must garner 45 percent of the vote, plus one.Kronberg on Friday characterized the questioning by The Aspen Times as an “invasion of privacy.””This is unacceptable,” she said.Koch said the only requirement to prove city residency is a signature on a voter registration form.”When you register to be a candidate, you sign an affidavit in front of a notary swearing that the above is true,” Koch said. “One expects a candidate to be honest about where they live when seeking public office.”Carolyn Sackariason’s e-mail is csack@aspentimes.com


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