Hydro advocates mislead the voters | AspenTimes.com

Hydro advocates mislead the voters

Dear Editor:

I am sick and tired of hearing from Mick Ireland and others that approximately “75 percent of Aspen voters” approved the construction of the hydro plant in 2007. This is malarkey. Horse puckey. An outright lie.

In fact, just 812 voters bothered to show up to vote in 2007. That’s just over 15 percent of the electorate. Clearly, then, there is no possible way for “75 percent of Aspen voters” to have done anything in that election besides stay at home. Of those 812 voters who indeed cast ballots, 582 voted in favor of Castle Creek hydro.

There’s the “approximately 75 percent,” (technically 72 percent), but that’s 72 percent of those who voted, not of all voters. An enormous difference. Considering that there were 5,167 on Aspen’s voter rolls at the time of the election, merely 11 percent of “Aspen voters” approved the beleaguered and over-budget folly that currently threatens Castle and Maroon creeks. A win – but hardly a mandate and certainly not a landslide. Furthermore, local residents Ward Hauenstein and Maurice Emmer collected 953 signatures for their anti-hydro petition last winter. That’s more signatures than the number of people who showed up to vote in 2007!

There is quite a difference between 11 percent and 75 percent, so when Aspen’s current and former mayors (Standley, Stirling, Richards and Ireland) and their surrogates regularly espouse blatantly false information in their attempts to mislead the electorate, it’s time to blow the B.S. whistle and correct the nonsense.

Standley and Stirling likely just signed on to the pro-hydro plant movement in”green-at-any-cost” solidarity without studying the very real environmental costs to the affected streams nor the actual financial costs because, after all, it’s someone else’s money. But Rachel Richards and Mick know exactly what they’re doing. If they repeat a falsehood often enough, it becomes their revisionist version of the truth.

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Buyer beware. When the hydro-plant proponents resort to falsifying simple and straightforward data to support their position, what will they do to more complex measurements (such as those monitoring water levels and stream health) when the numbers don’t support their empty promises?

Vote “no” on 2C. It’s not green to kill a stream.

Elizabeth Milias

Aspen