Aspen government vulnerable with no controls |

Aspen government vulnerable with no controls

It saddens the community to see a family devastated by misguided conduct. Yet a cautionary lesson lies in the saga of alleged theft from Aspen Skiing Co. Many ask, “How could this go undetected for years?” Press accounts answer, “lax controls at Skico.”

Only Skico’s owners’ wealth was diminished by lax controls. In contrast, lax controls at a public institution cost the public both money and opportunity. Consider the city of Aspen’s mismanagement of parking meters, permitting hundreds of thousands of dollars of lost revenues.

Aspen-Pitkin County Housing Authority has flown blind for years with not merely lax, but virtually useless information about who occupies its billions of dollars of real property. APCHA and the city claim to be building systems to track its units and occupants. Despite City Council’s demand for timely completion of a new system, the bureaucracy keeps answering, “We need a couple more years.”

It’s alleged that millions of dollars of ski equipment was stolen from Skico. What’s the value of APCHA housing being stolen by unqualified occupants? Without controls, no one knows.

Maurice Emmer