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Vote Ireland, Skadron on Tuesday

We have one word for Aspen voters going into the Tuesday, June 5, runoff election: VOTE. We’ll choose a new mayor and one new council member on that day, and if you don’t cast a ballot then you can’t complain about the results.Just 44 percent of local voters turned out at the polls on May 8 for the initial election, so it’s clear that each vote makes a difference. Just 289 votes separated mayoral candidates Mick Ireland and Tim Semrau the first time around, and 375 votes separated council candidates Toni Kronberg and Steve Skadron. The runoff could tighten up quickly if big numbers of voters stay home, so make sure your opinion is heard and your vote is counted.And now that you’ve agreed to vote Tuesday, we suggest you cast votes for Mick Ireland to be Aspen’s next mayor, and Steve Skadron for the remaining City Council seat.Ireland has worked diligently over the years to remedy housing and transportation problems in Aspen, the Roaring Fork Valley and the entire Western Slope. Ireland has served on the Pitkin County Board of Commissioners and many other local and regional panels over the years, trying hard to preserve Aspen as a place where real people can afford to live, while keeping our town viable for tourism.We respect Tim Semrau for the ideas he has brought to this campaign, because the ensuing discussion has made this a better race. But we support Mick Ireland because he’s smart, he’s a tireless worker, he isn’t beholden to any particular groups or interests in town, and can be trusted to put working locals first. We would also urge Ireland to listen and remain accessible to Aspenites from all walks of life, since some find him aloof and arrogant.In the City Council race between Toni Kronberg and Steve Skadron, issues like housing, transportation and development have been overshadowed by the fact that nobody seems to know whether Kronberg actually lives in Aspen. We’re not convinced that Kronberg has been forthcoming with voters about her residency, but we’d still choose Skadron regardless.The thoughtful and open-minded Skadron has spent the past four years as a Planning and Zoning commissioner, learning how the local government operates, especially when it comes to development. He has shown on the P&Z that he knows how to listen, that he’ll approach land-use applications and pressing issues with an open mind, and we think the City Council is a logical next step for him.Vote for Mick Ireland and Steve Skadron on June 5.


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