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Leadership at its worst

I would imagine that all the members of the Glenwood Springs City Council see themselves as leaders in the community, and I know that being a member of the City Council requires a large time commitment.

Unfortunately I think that Don Gillespie, in particular, acts more like an authority figure than a leader, regularly denigrating many of us who come before the council to give our input. He seems to have forgotten that he is a member of the community elected by his peers (equals) to represent them.

Part of that representation is everyone having their say respectfully and to be treated with respect in return. His creating a worst-case scenario and then waving his finger at those in the audience, daring them to come before council in the future to disagree with his premise, was insulting and an example of the worst of government.

We all only have our interpretation of any situation and not only deserve to be heard, but should be encouraged and honored by all council members to give their input. There might be conflicting points of view and it might cause some discomfort and more work for the council, but that is when effective leadership emerges. Not something I have yet to see from him.

Thank you to Dan Richardson, Rick Davis and Jean Martensen for voting against trashing the urban growth boundaries. It was hard to believe that Jean’s inspiring and well-documented speech was so totally ignored by Merritt, Vanderhoof, Emery and Gillespie.

I can only be amazed that Don Vanderhoof and Larry Emery think that there was no substance or meaning to that boundary and it was just some arbitrary line drawn in the sand. I’m sure that all of the people who spent so many hours and months working on that issue would strongly disagree with their interpretation.

Their excuse was that they wanted to maintain control. What an illusion! They just can’t see that what they did was simply a knee-jerk reaction to the threat of another development laced with some incentives.

Standing by our comp plan and taking the time to have community meetings to reassess any necessary changes that would have been most beneficial to the whole community and not the developer, would have maintained as much control as is possible in any given situation.

Of course that would have involved more time and work with the community to find out if our original purpose for the urban growth boundary had really changed and engaged us all to face the tough issues, but it would have been an example of leadership at its best.

Sheila Markowitz

Glenwood Springs


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