Public should regulate the regulators
Aspen has a municipal budget bloated enough to support some small Central American countries. Nevertheless, our politicians continue to look for innovative ways to raise even more money by taxing and regulating our residents into submission. I support the plastic-bag ban, but I see no reason why the revenues generated from paper-bag sales should go to the city. If this initiative is proposed to protect the environment, my personal choice for the funds would be a relevant charity such as the Sierra Club.
The latest proposal to tax and regulate homeowners who want to exercise their right to rent their personal homes is nothing more than a similar, thinly veiled scheme to raise more revenues and complicate the lives of our hardworking, law-abiding residents. Every rented home in Aspen represents an additional group of “hot beds” in town. The tourists who fill them will ski and hike and bike and spend their dollars in restaurants and shops. However, the net effect of the proposed new regulations will be to limit the number of homeowners who rent. It will turn what should be a simple process into another bureaucratic nightmare.
It’s sad that our politicians have nothing better to do than think up new and more abusive regulations. Over 40 years, I have heard repeated pleas from locals for more “messy vitality” in Aspen. However, the officials we elect will not bring back the excitement of the 1970s by sterilizing our town. Step by painful step, we are headed in the wrong direction. With this in mind, I suggest that City Council only enact one more regulation, which would be no more contrived regulations!
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