Some digging might be in order | AspenTimes.com

Some digging might be in order

Dear Editor:

The mayor delivered another sermon at last week’s Aspen City Council meeting. This time it was an attempted justification for the many tactics adopted by the city to maintain the secrecy of what council decides, when it has decided, who voted for or against and why.

The alleged reason is that the city has been sued a lot and even been investigated for possible criminal conduct. Somehow citizens’ asserting their rights is reason to ignore the Colorado Open Meetings Act and the city’s own conflict of interest and other ethics rules. Once again it is the pesky citizens, not a renegade city council, that is at fault.

Recently I met with the district attorney to find out whether he believed the city has engaged in criminal conduct. I did so because I had read several criminal provisions of the Colorado statutes that seemed to me might apply to various aspects of the city’s conduct.

I found out that a former councilman has been requesting from the district attorney information (emails, etc.) about contacts citizens have made with his office. The district attorney is obligated to disclose this information under the same Colorado Open Records Act (CORA) that permits citizens to examine anonymous ballots and other public records.

Why is a former councilman interested in whether citizens are curious about potential criminal conduct by the city? Is it idle intellectual curiosity? Is it attempted intimidation? Is it the whim of the former councilman or is it instigated by people now sitting in City Hall?

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I could ask for records from City Hall under CORA to find out more about who is behind this juvenile activity. So could you. CORA is available to everyone.

Maurice Emmer

Aspen