Aspen’s mayor should put public safety first |

Aspen’s mayor should put public safety first

This new $50,000 city of Aspen logo ordered by Aspen’s Mayor Steve Skadron is the last straw. This new design wipes away decades of classic Aspen logos in favor of “Emperor” Skadron’s hair-brained design. Skadron’s new logo speaks of the fractured dynamic between Aspen’s government and its citizens. The logo reflects a local government hell-bent on achieving some vague and unattainable eco-urban utopia at the expense of public safety and the flow of commercial traffic. The logo is a total waste of taxpayer money and encapsulates what’s really going on in Aspen. Aspen has a mayor who is on a quest to achieve radical change in Aspen’s way of life at the expense of public safety and at the cost of free-flowing commerce.

And Skadron’s quest is riddled with arrogance. $20 million for a new office building? Voters shouldn’t have any say in this; the Emperor can appropriate the money by administrative stroke of his pen. It took a judge to rein in this executive overreach. Choke all commercial traffic onto an aging and soon-to-be even narrower two lane bridge into and out of Aspen? No problem, we just need 800 more drivers per day to rely on public transportation. By the way, the Intercept Lot has room for at the most another couple of hundred cars. There’s no realistic way to reduce car traffic into and out of Aspen by 800 cars per day. And this is before Aspen’s airport gets enlarged to accommodate a significantly greater number of visitors.

Steve Skadron should be removed from office. Skadron’s intransigence against building a safe and secure second major artery into and out of Aspen over the Castle Creek ravine makes him unfit to serve as Aspen’s chief executive. By comparison, three years ago Snowmass Village voters removed Chris Jacobson from town council by an overwhelming margin (91 percent) in the recall election that followed Jacobson’s DUI arrest. Some said at the time that Jacobson had a momentary lack of good judgement and should remain in office. Ninety-one percent of voters disagreed.

There’s nothing momentary about Steve Skadron’s lack of good judgement. Skadron’s deliberate disregard toward public safety and the needs of free-flowing commerce is willful, continuing and obstinate. Aspen needs a recall election to remove Steve Skadron from office and elect a new mayor, one who will work diligently with the Colorado Department of Transportation to design and build a safe and secure second bridge as soon as possible.

John Hornblower