It’s not about big-box development |

It’s not about big-box development

Dear Editor:I was stunned to recently learn some Town Mothers are fixing to sabotage the upcoming trustee/mayoral elections by circulating misleading information to the citizens of Carbondale.Once again, they are trying to make the election of trustees and mayor about whether or not a candidate supports a “big-box” retail development, based on where the candidate stands on the Roadmap recommendations. They would have you believe that candidates Hassig, Foulkrod, Bernot and Maggert do not support the Roadmap recommendations and therefore must support a “big-box” development.In my humble opinion, nothing could be further from the truth. Mayor Hassig and trustees Foulkrod and Bernot are unfairly being criticized for doing exactly as they are elected to do, that is being respectful of the process to determine a direction for the town’s growth that does not compromise the financial well-being of the town and takes into consideration a variety of avenues.The final Roadmap recommendations, while containing some merit, also contain serious flaws as it pertains to the financial health of Carbondale. I have read the report and sat through several discussions at trustee meetings and while Mayor Hassig and trustees Foulkrod and Bernot may have reservations, I have found them to be receptive of the recommendations, simply asking the hard questions and fostering debate that is necessary. It is their responsibility as elected officials to not blindly accept the recommendations.Trustee Criswell, on the other hand, along with Trustee Chaplin, disrespectfully sabotaged this process and would have the recommendations crammed down the throats of this community without due consideration and fostering healthy debate. Is this because the recommendations cannot stand up to scrutiny? At best, the Roadmap recommendations are a work in progress at the trustee level and must be scrutinized.This election is not about the Marketplace property (big-box or otherwise) or whether one supports the Roadmap recommendations as is. This election is about which candidates have the integrity to serve in this public office with respect for the people of this community, which candidates respect the responsibility of managing the finances of this community with careful consideration, and which candidates respect open dialog and healthy debate. Michael Hassig, John Foulkrod and Stacy Patch-Bernot have demonstrated their commitment to this and along with Barry Maggert and current trustees Laird and Cortez, perhaps the process will be respected enough that the entire community could get behind some form of the recommendations.Lorey EsquibelCarbondale

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