Home Rule is good for Eagle County | AspenTimes.com

Home Rule is good for Eagle County

Dear Editor:Valley residents who live in Eagle County will receive a mail-in ballot this week to establish a commission to prepare a home rule plan for Eagle County. Voters will be asked to vote yes or no for the commission and to select 11 citizens to serve on this commission. After the commission prepares a home rule plan, Eagle County residents will have the opportunity to accept or reject the plan in a subsequent countywide election.Home rule has many advantages, especially for those of us who live in the Roaring Fork Valley. Currently Eagle County has three commissioners, none of whom live in our valley. We comprise approximately 20 percent of the voters in the county but have consistently lacked any direct representation. Our current, so-called “representative” resides in Gypsum.Candidates for the commission have proposed a plan in which the county will have five commissioners, each elected by the voters in separate geographic districts. This would mean that we would have our own representative from this valley elected exclusively by voters in this valley. Currently the three commissioners represent different districts but are elected at large by all the voters in the county. With 20 percent of the vote, we have very little chance of electing one of our own as a county commissioner. The new arrangement would guarantee that we, for the first time, would have a commissioner whose primary responsibility would be to represent our interests.I urge all Eagle County residents to vote yes on the home rule initiative. It is likely that the home rule plan will be very beneficial for us. If the plan that is developed is not in our best interest, we can vote against it when it comes up for adoption. The candidates from our valley for the commission are Michael Bair, Harvie Branscomb, Robert Schultz and Jacque Whitsitt. Vote for these four individuals to insure that our valley is fairly represented on the commission.Peter FreyBasalt