Coup d’Basalt update

Last week I focused on private sector obstruction. On the government side, Councilman and Aspen Skiing Co. VP Auden Schendler is rerouting and retraining his troops to support the next development application attack. Any application that follows the ugly townhouse wall application of last month will look good in comparison.

Schendler’s choice for Basalt’s new finance director will allow the continued ability to control the message to fit the goal. The former financial comptroller for the Rocky Mountain Institute was hired in September. This critical appointment could facilitate more camouflaged taxpayer-funded subsidies to the Institute. In 2015, Basalt purchased six employee-housing units 5 miles outside of Basalt, directly next door to Rocky Mountain Institute’s founder, Amory Loven’s residence in Old Snowmass (parcel #R010694). The past finance director held vodoo-like powers over the town by creating confusing, illegible budgets and statements with limited footnotes.

Schendler along with former pharmaceutical lobbyist, Councilman Bill Infante, have stated they want Basalt to do more for the Institute. Infante appears to have been promoted to second in command for the government branch of the River Park takeover. To that end, both lobby for big amounts of privatized taxpayer-funded development on the River Park to serve Rocky Mountain Institute and development consortium interests.

This marks the beginning of the fifth-year cycle of dirt/weeds/snow/mud. The black fencing that blocks the sparkling river views from much of Basalt is showing signs of wear.

Mark Kwiecienski