No laughing matter |

No laughing matter

Dear Editor:

In a recent letter to the editor, Jeremy Bernstein asked the readers if they would rather listen to a debate between Andrew Kole and Marilyn Marks “or have an hour of root canal surgery without the benefit of anesthesia?” (April 6)

It was a cute letter, and it made me smile, but the sad truth is that the problems Aspen faces this year are not a laughing matter. In case you haven’t noticed, our tourists visits are off, our tax receipts are down, and many of our local shops are closing. This has required our elected officials to start laying off our own friends and neighbors from their jobs at the city and county. On top of that, Aspen real estate values are “dropping quicker than a Bill Clinton intern on a pizza run.”

If you are a “local” and need to pay a mortgage on a free-market or affordable home, you should be concerned about the way the national economy will affect our town. More than ever, effective, efficient governance and creative strategies will be necessary to avoid further job losses. Andrew Kole is a marketing genius, Marilyn Marks is a hard-working, fiscally responsible, experienced manager, and LJ Erspamer has a background in accounting, and understands and respects Aspen’s history.

There won’t be much benefit in having a nice employee housing unit if you don’t have a job so you can pay your bills. Ultimately, employment here in the valley is dependent on maintaining a vibrant economy. Accordingly, Andrew, Marilyn and LJ deserve your serious consideration for the difficult job at hand. Mick Ireland has a terrific record on the environment, but Aspen could certainly benefit from some fresh ideas. If we don’t find new and improved ways to manage our finances and promote our town to tourists, you may not have your job or the money to pay for that root canal when you need it!

Jerry Bovino


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