Give Home Rule a chance | AspenTimes.com

Give Home Rule a chance

Dear Editor:My wife and I are residents of Eagle County, living in the El Jebel area. For years we have tried to participate in our county government with varying amounts of success. We have worked with the past and current commissioners and witnessed how difficult it was both for them, and for us, to really communicate and be productive. We were part of the “secession movement” of a few years back, because we felt there had to be a better system of representing the Roaring Fork Valley portion of Eagle County.We now have a plan for representation that is both fair and achievable. The Home Rule Charter Proposal will enable the 20 percent of us who live in the Basalt, El Jebel and Missouri Heights areas to have a direct contact, an understanding ear who more effectively expresses our viewpoints. Since the elected positions are non-affiliated with any party, we are more assured of having someone in office who really speaks to issues and not political affiliation.For those on the Eagle/Vail side, it would be easy for you to simply vote it down. After all, what effect does it have on you? There are many good reasons for having a five-person commission other than simply accommodating your county brothers on this side. Most importantly to us, as our beautiful areas have come more and more under the onslaught of development and growth, the complexity of the issues, and the resulting decisions, are becoming increasing difficult to make, and are far-reaching in effect. The pressure being brought to bear on the three-person commission is most certainly going to (if it hasn’t already) result in mistakes being made. We believe a five-person commission can more effectively share the work load and further ensure sound, representative decisions.Voting “yes” for the Home Rule Charter proposal will dramatically improve the effectiveness of government in both valleys. For those who feel that adding commissioners is tantamount to “increasing bureaucracy,” please note that our valleys have dramatically increased in population, density and complexity. The good old days when three well-meaning citizens could make decisions that were intelligent, beneficial and representative are gone. It really is time to upgrade our system of governance and decision making to match the changes we witness every day.A “yes” vote is not going to seal anything in stone! It will give us the opportunity to implement an intelligent, workable and progressive system of governance that is, at its core, flexible! It can be changed, adjusted, tweaked and molded into a system that works for the benefit of all of us – those on the Eagle/Vail side, and those of us on this side who crave to be more involved and to be a more pertinent part of the decision-making process.Please vote YES for the Home Rule Charter proposal – give it a chance!Willard and Anne ClapperEmma

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