Milias: Oh, they’re there
Dear Ms. Hebson: Thank you for reading my recent column. Yes, I am very concerned about local population growth and our carrying capacity for it. I am extremely concerned about the increased pressure continued growth will place on our already stressed workforce — “nurses, doctors, teachers, police, waiters and bartenders” — especially where they will live. That is why I believe we need to figure out how to properly provide housing for these essential workers before we recklessly enable more growth. I’m glad we can agree on this.
Our current system provides subsidized-housing access to people who merely wish to live in Aspen affordably, so, today, we find ourselves housing rational actors who benefit from our leniency. There are countless people in the APCHA system who own investment properties elsewhere. I could name names, but it’s perfectly legal. Some certainly can now afford free-market real estate in Aspen, but why would they?
You are perhaps the one who is out of touch believing we don’t have employees of “powerful tech companies” living in our subsidized housing. It’s more prevalent than you realize. Once in the system, employer, income, and assets are never ever revisited, and remote work from Pitkin County is permitted. If you don’t believe me, read the APCHA regulations, page 14.
You could also ask the guy with the vineyard in Montrachet or the family with the French chateau — or simply follow them on Instagram.