Re-fighting an old battle | AspenTimes.com

Re-fighting an old battle

Terry Paulson’s letter, published in your Oct. 15 edition, is another example of the half-truths that seem to be the hallmark of the No-build coalition. To say that the ?96 vote was manipulated by rail advocates is a joke.

The rail/no rail battle did not begin until later. The ?96 vote was to create a CORRIDOR for transit, in the most efficient manner possible, regardless of the mode of transit. This vote gave us the option for any mode of mass transit that we, the citizens, would choose in the future.

The subsequent votes are interesting from the vantage point of hindsight. The ?99 rail vote was brought to the voters, not by the pro-rail supporters but by the anti-rail, pro-four-lane Alliance led by Jeffrey Evans.

The pro-rail supporters were not ready to bring their case to the people and even debated whether or not to get involved in the election. When they did enter the battle they did not have the dollar resources to compete with the huge, unidentified war chest of Jeffrey’s forces.

The 2001 election for busways was a victim of too much distrust by many of the electorate who thought that this was a stalking horse for a “super secret” rail society. This could not have been further from the truth.

Witness the fact that many of the staunchest rail supporters campaigned against the busways because they felt that passage would end the effort for rail. The four-laners felt that this would also seal the fate of an expanded highway so they fought this issue as well.

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Of course, the No-builds fought everything. They cannot accept change in any form regardless of the consequences that will be felt by the community.

So, here we are again, back to fighting for the CORRIDOR. The No-builds, heavily funded by some self-interested individuals, are forcing the community to re-fight an old battle.

Please vote for the straight shot and show the regressive No-builds that we need transportation options for the future.

Richie Cohen

Aspen

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