Poschman, Writer to square off for Pitkin commissioner seat
A filmmaker and a businessman with real estate ties will vie for the District 3 seat on the Pitkin County board of commissioners in November.
Greg Poschman, 56, and Scott Writer, 58, took the top two spots in Tuesday’s primary and will run for the seat to be vacated by Michael Owsley, who is stepping down after serving the limit of three terms on the board. Hawk Greenway, 56, a longtime member of the county’s Open Space and Trails Board, came in third place in Tuesday’s primary voting.
“I’m humbled and excited and eager to move forward,” Poschman said by phone from the J-Bar at the Hotel Jerome. “This is a big responsibility I’ve been given and I’m grateful for it.”
Poschman received 1,166 votes or 44.8 percent of the vote, while Writer garnered 839 votes or 32.2 percent, and Greenway got 599 votes or 23 percent of the votes cast, according to the final unofficial results posted by the Pitkin County Elections Department on the Colorado Secretary of State’s website a little after 9 p.m.
Of the 14,767 eligible voters in Pitkin County, 2,707 or 18.3 percent, voted in Tuesday’s primary.
Attempts to reach Greenway, who ran as a Democrat, after the final tally Tuesday night were not successful.
Writer, who ran as an Independent, said he was thankful for the opportunity to run for a seat on the county board.
“Aspen has always been a place that has thrived on being inclusive to all of the people that make this our home,” Writer said in a text message. “We need a common-sense approach to the future of Aspen.
“This is not just a job for me, it is what I really care about.”
Writer urged Pitkin County residents to get to know him.
“Talk to me over the next four months,” he said. “Let’s make Aspen into what we all know it can be.”
Poschman, a Democrat, said he thought getting an early start on the primary and reaching out to a broad spectrum of Pitkin County voters was the difference for him.
“I reached out to wealthy friends, retirees, worker bees, next gens (and) ranchers,” he said. “We had a lot of support from a diverse group of people.”
Poschman said he plans to continue those outreach efforts and plans to meet with members of the Open Space and Trails Board as well as mountain bikers to assure people he supports and uses trails.
“I want to make everyone feel I represent them,” he said.
Still, he pointed out that the contest isn’t over until November.
“I haven’t won yet,” Poschman said.
In a debate earlier this month at Grassroots TV in Aspen, Poschman criticized Greenway for developing a cabin on a mining claim on the backside of Aspen Mountain and other dabblings in real estate.
Poschman also suggested that members of the Pitkin County Open Space and Trails Board should be subject to term limits because of an “arrogance” he’s heard about from some rural residents of the county.
“It does seem like an old boys club,” Poschman said.
Greenway defended the cabin on Aspen Mountain, saying he lived there 15 years with his son and it was his solution to the housing problem many who live in the area must face. He also said he believes the open space board goes to great lengths to collaborate with residents and community members on open space projects and that term limits on a volunteer board was “absurd.”
Writer called Poschman’s criticism of Greenway’s real estate transactions “a bogus call.” Beyond that, Writer called for Pitkin County to become more involved in the Aspen-Pitkin County affordable-housing program.
“Pitkin County doesn’t carry its weight in the (affordable housing) program,” he said. “It’s time for the county to get involved in the program.”
District 3 essentially wraps around Aspen’s city limits and includes Independence Pass, Brush Creek and Woody Creek, though county board representatives are elected on an at-large basis.
Grizzly Reservoir, the high-mountain lake above Aspen formed by damming Lincoln and Grizzly creeks, will be drained next summer for repairs to the dam, tunnel and outlet works.
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