Roses and Thorns (June 26, 2020) | AspenTimes.com
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Roses and Thorns (June 26, 2020)

Bouquets of roses go to all of the grocery store workers and every employee who must deal with the public during this pandemic. It’s hard enough to wear a mask all the time, but it’s even worse when you have to be exposed to the virus and visitors who don’t believe in any of it, or just don’t care.

Some thorns are due the city, and here’s why. Under the “basic city government services” category, filling potholes is one of those annoying but necessary functions that citizens expect. At least since the winter and cross-country skiing season, if not before, there have been deep craters eating tires and undercarriages on cars at the entrance to the golf course. It’s not like city officials don’t know they are there; they have to navigate through them as much we do. We get it, times are tough but we are not that bad off that we can’t fill a few potholes. Do we need to have a bake sale to raise money for this basic government function, or should we get a class-action lawsuit together to pay for all of the repairs to our cars? Or maybe the city could fulfill its role as a municipality and just get it done.

Thorns to the federal justice systems for failing to adequately deal with self-styled bad boy David Lesh. The U.S. Attorney’s Office agreed to a plea deal with Lesh for riding his snowmobile on Independence Pass in July 2019. He was given a $500 fine and 50 hours of community service. This was a “deal” for Lesh, not for the citizens of the U.S., who the Attorney’s Office represents. The deal was adhered to even though Lesh has committed additional stunts to capitalize on abuse of public lands since the snowmobile incident. In one of the latter incidents, Lesh allegedly hiked up to Hanging Lake while the trail was closed and walked out onto a log in the pristine lake. The federal prosecutor said more is to come in the government’s case against Lesh. Let’s hope so. This guy will be unfazed unless the punishment actually stings.

Roses to Dieter Schindler for being a good sport in participatory government. Schindler was edged out of a Basalt Town Council seat by a handful of votes in the April election. Instead of getting sour on local politics, Schindler volunteered to serve on the town’s financial advisory board. He was appointed by the council Tuesday. This is a great way for Schindler to stay involved and learn more about town government. We hope it also greases the skids for a potential council bid in 2022.

Roses to Tony DiLucia for all of his work at the Hotel Jerome for some three decades. DiLucia navigated the hotel through ownership changes, renovations and other challenges, all the while putting on a welcoming face during his time at the hotel. DiLucia has retired, and we wish him only the best.


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