Letters to the Editor

Letter: Bike riders: Follow the rules

July 6, 2015 — 

I was on my way to Glenwood the other day and cars had to stop at the CMC turnoff with the traffic light.

I thought it was against the law for bike riders to ignore the laws of the road. This bike rider wasn’t on the bike path, he was on Highway 82 and riding on the side of the road. Why have we spent millions of dollars on a bike path that gives this rider the arrogance to ride the road and have people pull around him?

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Letter: Broadband improvements

July 6, 2015 — 

I have just attended this year’s Mountain Connect conference in Vail where the theme was developing rural broadband infrastructure through public/private partnerships (PPP). The conference was excellent and well attended (+350) by Local Technology Planning Teams (LTPT), county officials and industry representatives from every corner of the state. They came together to hear from industry experts on the latest trends in technology and LTPT on their successes and lessons learned.

Gov. Hickenlooper’s staff announced at the conference that building broadband infrastructure throughout the state is their No. 1 economic development priority. Last fall the governor announced that the Department of Local Affairs (DOLA) was making $20 million available to local governments for planning and building open access rural broadband infrastructure. The good news is DOLA has already committed or spent $19 million and is working with almost every part of rural Colorado, including Northwest Colorado, to put these funds to work. There are also substantial sources of funds available from the federal government to build broadband infrastructure for three of our most important entities: schools and libraries, hospitals and first responders.

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Letter: Orwellian society?

July 5, 2015 — 

Isn’t the list of presidential hopefuls getting interesting? I was well aware of the full house of kooks, crazies, corporate shills, paid apologists for the wealthy and outright traitors in the Republican Party, but this current candidate crop is truly excruciating. How many of these fools should be impeached immediately for violating their oaths of office? We are treated to more examples of law by opinion, as numerous Republicans declare they will not obey sensible and human (not corporate) recent decisions, of the normally fascist-leaning Supreme Court. In the meantime, we have the donald, bobby, rick, ted, scott (lowercase intentional) and others mouthing inane insanities in the background.

Then we should consider our president, Hillary, our own Sen. Bennett and all too many Democrats trying to “fast track” TPP, the sleaziest, phony, piece of corporate-penned garbage to come down the pipe in years. Pirate drafts of this law-breaking, patent-busting slime-filled tome indicate a total sell-out of American workers and the populace at large.

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Letter: Enough is enough

July 5, 2015 — 

Regarding Brad Gates’ letter of July 1, you ask, “Was it the marijuana tourist who came to Colorado and voted marijuana legal, or was it you and your neighbor? I’m pretty sure it was you and your neighbor, correct me if I am wrong.”

Well you are wrong. It wasn’t my neighbor, and it wasn’t me, and it wasn’t the 40 some percent of the state that voted against it, either. I accept that recreational pot is legal now, but the current debate seems to be centered on how many pot shops are enough.

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Letter: Investigate the county

July 4, 2015 — 

While I would like to congratulate the PI on its journalistic excellence in exalting the pizza boy/pizza man story, I would also like to inquire how it is that we read nothing about the recent “resignation” and “mutual agreement” employment endings occurring in the highest level of our county’s government.

Drew Gorgey just “agreed to part ways” with his job as county manager, and a couple of months ago, Frank Hutfless, the county attorney, retired, having only served two years of his contract.

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Letter: Stupid is as stupid does

July 4, 2015 — 

Could not help using that great statement about stupid. What is stupid, it was electing Obama instead of Romney. One of my brothers who has, or had, an extremely high IQ, voted for Obama to prove to himself that he was not a racist. Now that is stupid.

However, he was among too many people who figured that they would be given more help with BO in the White House. Of course, there are others that vote for their party no matter what the candidate stood for.

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Letter: Inspired by Pope Francis

July 3, 2015 — 

When Jorge Bergoglio, a Jesuit priest from Argentina, was named pope and I found out he studied chemistry, I felt a close tie. I, too, was Jesuit-educated and studied chemistry. If there was one directive the Jesuits taught me, it was the relentless search for truth, both in my Catholic faith and in my studies.

It is that constant merging of faith and reason that I so admire about the Jesuits. I see that the constant search for truth has propelled Pope Francis to write a papal encyclical on climate change and environmental degradation. A Papal encyclical is a letter treating some aspect of Catholic teaching. This particular encyclical, Laudato Si (Praise be to you), is addressed to all people in the world and is focused on caring for our common home, Earth.

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Letter: Declaration of Interdependence

July 3, 2015 — 

Since it’s near the 4th of July, time to remember and be thankful for the cornerstones of our country. Everyone knows that the Declaration of Independence came before the Constitution and its most famous line is: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

This is the premise of Constitution. The Constitution was designed to flesh out and protect these unalienable rights. By doing so, the document may be more appropriately called the Declaration of Interdependence. It says that forces that destroy or distort our interdependence is what we need to declare our independence from ... like a king or a power that subjects or supplants those rights from our Creator.

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Letter: Let's stop the stereotyping

July 2, 2015 — 

Thank you, Ryan Hoffman, for attending the June White River Trail Runners (WRTRS) ATV/UTV club meeting. We appreciate him accepting our invitation to discuss the June 25 Citizen Telegram Hubbard Mesa article, and editorial.

Many WRTRS members, including myself, found it interesting, but not surprising, Hubbard Mesa once again made the news. Unfortunately, the article and editorial painted a certain user group in a very negative light, and was considered by many rather one sided. The area has been enjoyed for many generations, and only within the last few years seems to be on certain people’s radar.

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Letter: Most Fun Town or POTtersville?

July 2, 2015 — 

Glenwood Springs has traditionally been a great place to bring out-of-town tourists of all ages and backgrounds. But Glenwood Springs seems to be on the way to earning the title of “marijuana dispensary capital” of the I-70 corridor, given the many dispensaries along Grand Avenue and downtown, with still more seeking to open.

It’s especially troubling to imagine a marijuana shop and edibles bakery directly next door to the Vaudeville, prominently in the center of downtown. The Vaudeville is one of the unique family establishments in the area and the proposed location is about as visible as it gets. I have nothing per se against legal marijuana sales, but if our beautiful Colorado towns don’t get a handle on the oversaturation of retail marijuana establishments, before long the reputation of our communities as fun, family-friendly places to stay, visit and enjoy will suffer and could be permanently damaged.

It must be tempting for Colorado towns to give in to the attraction of collecting taxes from vendors or give way to the threat of legal action. But the long-term character of Glenwood Springs is at stake. I’ve been able to joke about the many marijuana stores when I bring guests to town, but at a certain point it can’t be laughed off and they’ll look for somewhere else to go. It is up to the City Council and all of us to make sure Glenwood Springs remains the “Most Fun Town in America” and doesn’t become another “POTtersville” USA.

Letter: Cruise-a-Thong isn't safe

July 2, 2015 — 

While standing in my driveway last year, I could hear the hoots of laughter as participants rode by having a great time in the Cruise-a-Thong. I could also hear the “oh no’s” and “whoa, this is a big downhill” as they went careening down the narrow sidewalk too fast for conditions. What disturbed me most wasn’t what I could hear but what I could see. I could see that more than half the participants did not have helmets on. In fact folks had flowing capes, hats with ribbons, sandals and bare feet.

When I wrote to the event organizers, they told me helmets were encouraged. “Encouraged” is not the same as required. When you organize an event you owe it to everyone to create as safe an environment as is possible. Riding a bike without a helmet and with dangling clothing is not safe.

Along the same lines, how can an event in good conscience have people “race” in the rivers without requiring life jackets? Common sense alone dictates that safety measure. The event organizers said life jackets were “encouraged,” not mandatory.

When you live and recreate on the rivers, you must have respect for the dangers as well as the enjoyment. I would never encourage a loved one of mine to raft, kayak, inner tube, fish, ducky paddle or SUP without a life jacket. I understand that accidents happen — that is why they are called accidents. To blatantly not try to prevent an accident in a public event is unconscionable.

We have an obligation to be good stewards of the rivers and that includes helping those new to the rivers become familiar with water safety issues. Every year neighbors in our communities loose loved ones to drownings. To encourage folks to use barely seaworthy floatables without life jackets is not good river mentoring.

What a person does on their own time is one thing. But to have a public event without mandatory helmets and life jackets such as promoted by the Cruise-a-Thong and their sponsors is simply not acceptable in my book. Have fun, but be safe.

Letter: Sell brownies at intermission

July 2, 2015 — 

John Goss, you need to take your show on the road because it won’t play in Glenwood Springs. Your arguments are ridiculous and lame.

Yes, this town is a destination because people can enjoy themselves in many different ways. Including having pot available to them. I didn’t hear any concerns about liquor or tobacco stores that actually do harm people.

Use the edible store to your advantage and sell brownies at intermission. Look on the other side of the page from your column and read Brad Gates’ letter. Right on, Brad.

Readers Say Thanks

July 2, 2015 — 

YouthEntity Pig Roast a success

On Saturday, June 27, 125 guests from the community gathered at the Aspen Glen Club to enjoy the seventh annual YouthEntity Pig Roast. The al fresco evening included a first course of five delicious appetizers; live music; dinner featuring a Berkshire Roast Suckling Pig and seven additional dishes; featured speaker Karla Enriquez of our ProStart program; a live auction; dessert; and dancing. The night was a big success, and we are grateful to all who attended and contributed to the event.  

A special thank you goes to All Pets Mobile Vet, Alpine Bank, Aspen Glen Club, AspenPrivateChef.com, Aspen Skiing Co., Robert Blattberg and Rebecca Donelson, Colorado Restaurant Association Education Foundation, Carrie Fell, Four Mountain Sports, Limelight Hotel, Charmaine Locke and James Surls, Gerry McDaniel, Bruce and Janis Merrill, Pan & Fork Supper Club, Pullman, Gino and Donna Rossetti, Smith Fork Ranch, Town and Yepello Chocolates & Confections.

YouthEntity empowers youth to discover their potential through real-world learning experiences. For more information, please contact us at 970-963-4055 or YouthEntity.org

Thank you for your support!

Kirsten Petre McDaniel

president/executive director, YouthEntity

Letter: Adults must educate on pot

July 1, 2015 — 

I thank Brad Gates for his letter of June 26 in the Post Independent on Glenwood’s marijuana dilemma. It’s refreshing to find respectful debate on both sides of an issue. Too often we find belittling words and not-so-subtle name-calling strutted about rather than rational discussion.

Brad questioned the value of my proposal that City Council mandate all marijuana dispensaries hand out cards to their patrons, cataloging the damage THC does to the developing brain of youth. He believes information given to the adult patron is wasteful since it is our teens that need this knowledge. My intention, however, is to continually educate as well as remind the adult user of this danger. I believe they would be the most listened to and therefore the most effective educators. Brad’s mandate that schools as well as parents must educate the children is also most critical to stamp out this disregarded curse.

In 2012, Colorado’s “yes” vote for the legalization of Marijuana was 54.8 percent. I doubt it would have passed had voters understood our youth’s newfound assurance that it is obviously safe to use.

Letter: A vision for downtown GWS

July 1, 2015 — 

After the former editor of the Post Independent sacked reporter John Colson, I promised myself I would never write another letter to the editor. However, after reading the 7.1.15 John Goss op/ed piece, I have changed my mind on boycotting the PI.

Therefore, as a formally educated University of California social scientist with 35 plus years in local economic development , I hereby publicly challenge the very premise of the John Goss thesis of: “If we are going preserve the family atmosphere of Glenwood Springs and save the businesses that help make Glenwood Springs ‘The Most Fun Town in America,’ we must act quickly.”

Instead of “saving” what is left of the downtown GWS’ profitable businesses, (such as the Glenwood Vaudeville Review, the tattoo parlors and saloons, Eagles & Doc Holliday’s) please allow me to suggest that a responsible, scientifically designed, local economic redevelopment plan (ERP), is what must be pursued:

1. Because the city of Glenwood Springs has an activated Colorado Urban Renewal Authority (DDA), and 2. Because the Garfield County coffers presently hold $130 Million in untapped cash reserves, (more than safely solvent to dedicate future tax increments to the GWS Downtown Development Authority and away from the greedy grip of Garfield County Treasurer Carla Bagley), and 3. Because the Grand Avenue Bridge rebuild is now under way by CDOT, an unprecedented and timely economic development opportunity is presently available to the people, downtown property owners and business of GWS, but you must “act quickly.”

If you are a property owner in the GWS downtown area, between Cooper Street, 8th Street and Colorado Street, (including the Worrell & Durrett Building owned by Garfield County), for most of you (not all), the economic life of your antiquated buildings has ended and the reason you are able to charge small businesses rent is because of your property’s downtown location of the real estate (land) beneath your buildings and not the existing economic vitality of the actual commercial buildings you own. A child can walk in the alleys behind your commercial space and see that most of these buildings should be razed and redeveloped.

Therefore, I propose instead five-story multi-use buildings including professional office space, commercial/retail space and affordable housing as the cornerstone in the downtown ERP.

This all begins by the GWS City Council taking aggressive action in a timely and workmanlike manner.

Readers Say Thanks

June 30, 2015 — 

Eagle Scout appreciates help with project

I recently completed my Eagle Scout project, which was to build two large three-compartment bins for trash, recycling and used tennis balls. These were placed at two tennis courts around Glenwood Springs. The tennis balls will be sent to skilled nursing facilities for use on the ends of canes or walkers, and to animal shelters as play-toys.

I could not have completed this project without the help of many local businesses and volunteers: Lowes, Micro Plastics and Big John’s Ace Hardware for their donations and discounts on materials; John Diemoz of Diemoz Design Detailing for his design expertise and professional blueprints; Eric Pedersen and Dale Fitzgerald for their professional carpentry skills, tools and advice; and to the following for assembly: Raul Rios, Alphonse Fisher, Blake Pedersen, Louis Bini and my parents, John and Lauri Bosco.

Thanks also to Steve and Wendy Vanderhoof, Hollis and Anne-Marie Kelley and Kjell Mitchell at Glenwood Hot Springs for their donations.

This was a challenging and rewarding project that could not have been possible without everyone’s help. Thank you all!

Justin Bosco

Glenwood Springs

Letter: Women at the head of the table

June 30, 2015 — 

I appreciate Carrie Morgridge’s discussion about philanthropy in a recent article. I value her willingness to encourage women to have their voices heard. She goes on to suggest that women “… should have a seat at the table with men.” Upon reading these inspirational words I was reminded about President Obama’s thoughts on this issue.

President Obama, a graduate of Columbia University, gave the commencement speech at Barnard College on May 14, 2012. Barnard is a women’s college associated with Columbia University. During his eloquent speech, similar to Carrie Morgridge, the president called for women to follow their passion and have their voices heard. Not only did he call women to sit at the table with men, he challenged them to take a place of additional power and influence and “sit at the head of the table.”

Jim Coddington


Letter: Tourists didn't legalize pot

June 30, 2015 — 

I’m a bit confused again. In this debate concerning the marijuana bakery downtown, I have read several statements in letters that say Glenwood Springs does not want to become a destination resort for marijuana tourism.

I think Glenwood has been positioning itself as a destination resort for decades. Apparently only for certain types of tourists.

These letter writers are assuming that the marijuana industry will bring undesirable tourists who will frequent only marijuana stores.

Please define for me what a marijuana tourist looks like. Does he hike, or ski, or eat, or just smoke pot? Will this tourist rent a room or sleep under the bridge? Is the marijuana tourist married with children? Is the marijuana tourist male or female? Is the marijuana tourist educated? Does the marijuana tourist have money? Is the marijuana tourist a professional or a bum?

Was it the feared marijuana tourist who came to Colorado and voted marijuana be legal, or was that you and your neighbor? I’m pretty sure it was you and your neighbor, but correct me if I’m wrong, please.

Brad Gates

New Castle

Letter: Mental health aid not fully available

June 30, 2015 — 

The guest opinion on mental health resources in the valley was very helpful. These resources are readily available — to people who can afford it. If you are low income, some places do sliding scale work. If you have a job and insurance, with a decent income, either the provider does not take insurance or the mental health benefits of your insurance are insufficient.

Just because you have a decent income does not mean you can afford to pay 50 percent or more for mental health appointments. Until private insurance mental health benefits improve, some of these resources will, unfortunately, go unused.

Molli Deines


Letter: Sad state of affairs

June 30, 2015 — 

On the evening of June 21, after we had shut down our yard sale, a very expensive pair of men’s winter boots grew legs and walked off with a Craftsman tool box full of new stuff.

Sad that some people are so inconsiderate and feel the need to steal from others.

Liz Brooks and Steve Webster


Letter: Glenwood water move applauded

June 29, 2015 — 

”Surf Colorado” has been the mantra of river runners since the early 1990s. Though we’re 1,000 miles from the nearest ocean, Colorado’s rivers provide a terrific chance to ride the waves on rafts, kayaks and paddleboards, with spectacular mountain backdrops. Thanks to a number of cities in Colorado, surfing Colorado is here to stay.

2015 turned into a banner year for floating/riding/surfing Colorado’s rivers and streams. After a worryingly dry winter, April, May and June were — in most places — way above average with rain and snow, making for big spring runoff. It’s been a good year for local river communities, too. These towns have been reaping the financial rewards of boaters visiting town, buying food and gear, and staying in local lodging.

Many cities realize they can’t take these flows for granted. They realize there is a need to protect rivers for the many benefits they provide. On just the Western Slope of Colorado, river-related recreation contributes $9 billion each year to local economies and provides 80,000 jobs.

More than 20 wise local governments have secured water rights to protect the future of local boating. For example, Durango is protecting the Animas River, Steamboat Springs has water rights for the Yampa, and the Upper Gunnison River Water Conservancy District protects, not surprisingly, the Gunnison River. Now there is also a water rights application working its way through the Colorado Water Conservation Board administrative proceedings to protect flows on the Colorado River, right in Glenwood Springs.

We want to applaud Glenwood Springs for seizing the day — to protect flows for this vibrant part of the local recreation economy, including annual river festivals. The Colorado River as it runs through Glenwood Canyon is one of the most memorable places anywhere, and 60,000 rafters each year get to experience this rich Colorado experience. I’m glad we’re protecting it for the future.

Dr. Chris Tonozzi

Glenwood Springs

Letter: Stand up and be heard

June 29, 2015 — 

I guess there is a first time for everything. I have been tempted a number of times to write a letter to the paper but never did. I feel now is the time.

I understand that the majority (10 percent) voted in favor of marijuana sales, but that did not mean they expected unlimited control of the number of shops in a community.

Some people compare the marijuana shops to liquor stores. Well, if one wants to open a liquor store, one of the regulations is that they prove a “needs of the neighborhood.” That did not include the entire city. It was obvious from the hearing on the license request at 919 Grand Ave. the “neighborhood” did not feel there was a need. An argument given at the City Council meeting regarding more marijuana licenses was that there were no shops on the West side of Grand. That should prove the need?

It is interesting that of the seven liquor stores in town only two are on Grand Avenue, and they are located south of 19th street. I am not including the convenience stores or grocery stores that sell 3.2 beer. One last thing I will mention, unless the law has been changed, is that an individual in Colorado can hold only one liquor license, and it covers only one location. That includes corporations (considered a person).

The City Council has a meeting scheduled on July 2. People need to attend that meeting if they don’t want to see the rejection of the license request at 919 Grand overturned, and make their voices heard.

Bill Coleman

Glenwood Springs

Letter: Overtaxed patriots?

June 29, 2015 — 

For most people, payday is the best time of the month. It’s the time when you can pay those bills that have been stacking up, and if you are lucky, have a little left to spend on yourself.

But what about all that money the government takes out of your paycheck? Some people would argue its their “patriotic duty” to pay the taxes. I’m writing this letter to inform you that paying taxes is not patriotic.

During WWII, Congress passed the Current Tax Payment Act to help pay for the war. This was the first time in the history of the United States, that the government prematurely started taking money out of worker’s paychecks.

At the time, this was considered to be a patriotic act. Here is the kicker: WWII is over, but the government never stopped taking money out of our paychecks.

Now I am not saying that paying taxes is a bad thing, I am merely saying that we are being overtaxed. We pay taxes on everything we purchase from gas to groceries. So the next time you open up your paycheck ask yourself, “Is this my patriotic duty?”

Wyatt Till


Letter: July 4 fireworks are all wet again

June 28, 2015 — 

We have had some pretty dry conditions over the last few years and the City Council made the right decisions to cancel the display in lieu of the fire concern. I am a bit upset, though, that this year’s fireworks have also been canceled in lieu of having those funds put to what the council feels is a better use, and doing it yet again on Ski Spree. This decision I feel was in very poor taste as Ski Spree has absolutely nothing to do with Independence Day and everything to do with the almighty dollar.

The fireworks on our country’s Independence Day have always been a celebration of our country’s independence and freedoms. Growing up, it was always such a treat on the Fourth of July to be able to watch the fireworks display and see all the patriotism. As a child, I really didn’t understand the reasoning behind the fireworks, but as I grew older I understood just how important it was to celebrate this very important day in our country’s history.

We in Glenwood Springs are very fortunate to live in a beautiful town with many attractions and have been voted the most fun town in America. We have great tourism both in the summer and the winter and see folks from several different states and countries that come to our tiny town to enjoy all it has to offer. We should be showing our patriotism and putting on a nice fireworks show on the Fourth, and if the City Council believes they need to have Ski Spree fireworks, then they can do that also.

Our locals who pay taxes in Glenwood Springs deserve to be able to have our families come from out of state or town and have a grand Fourth of July with their children and grandchildren and teach them about the importance of that day. I am asking that the council rethink its decision if time permits, and show the patriotism our town has.

Douglas Brown

Glenwood Springs

Letter: Good start to Imagine Glenwood

June 28, 2015 — 

A very big thank-you to all of you who were able to attend the first meeting of Imagine Glenwood at the Glenwood Springs Library on June 10.

Our goal is to Imagine our future, looking not only toward the scheduled bridge replacement but to the continuing growth throughout our valley and its impact on our city. We will proactively look for measures that will protect and preserve all of our neighborhoods for generations to come working with our city to achieve this vision.

We continue our efforts at our next scheduled meeting: 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 11, at the Glenwood Springs Library. Please join us, your voice and vision will make a difference.

Diane Reynolds

Glenwood Springs

Letter: Let the North secede

June 27, 2015 — 

The recent storm of words over the flying of the Confederate battle flag in South Carolina has caused me to rethink my position on the Civil War and, much to my dismay, on President Abraham Lincoln. My now-counterfactual feeling about the Civil War is that it should never have been fought.

I have a modest proposal. I say let the North now secede from the South. Let the United States of America include all of the states except South Carolina, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, Virginia, Arkansas, Tennessee, North Carolina and the Oklahoma and Arizona territories. Let these states go.

Not one of the over 400,000 Yankees who died was worth losing. If I could bring them back, I would. And Lincoln was wrong to think that such bloodshed to preserve the “Union” was right or could even be successful. Ever.

Letter: Get accurate info on injection wells

June 27, 2015 — 

Fluids management. It’s a fancy phrase describing what natural gas companies do with extra water from natural gas production. Western Colorado has the most diverse and technologically complex “fluids management” system in the country. For most of recent history the No. 1 local public concern with oil and gas drilling surprisingly had nothing to do with fracking but rather was a result of traffic concerns moving water around. From dust and noise to speeding and ruts industry recognized need for improvement in this area. Among the most vocal proponents of reducing industry traffic were residents of Battlement Mesa. And for good reason.

Folks in Battlement Mesa live in close proximity to drilling operations. In addition to hugely successful water recycling programs, industry turned to water injection wells as a way to improve efficiency while addressing traffic concerns. Injection wells are specially engineered wells that put salty old water back into ancient formations from whence it came — over a mile underground. This approach to managing excess water does more than just reduce traffic. In some cases the practice has dang near eliminated traffic. In Battlement Mesa, tens of thousands of vehicle miles and industrial road use will be eliminated as a result of water recycling, water pipelines and water re: injection wells.

Red herring rhetoric has dominated newspaper reports lately about injection wells in Garfield County. For center-minded folks who want good information, Professor Rick Aster of Colorado State University recently presented information on injection wells in Rifle. Professor Aster does a wonderful job describing the real versus perceived challenges with injection wells while putting risk into a rational context.

Unfortunately, a local activist often makes comments that take Aster’s remarks remarkably out of context. So it’s highly recommended Post Independent readers take time to see the CSU presentation on injection wells in person.

The Colorado Oil & Gas Conservation Commission is another great technical resource for people wanting to slice through fear and acquire facts about how water injection wells are permitted and approved and what protections are in place. From reuse and recycling to evaporation and re injection, producers of the Piceance Basin have called up technology to vastly reduce impacts when managing industry’s water. Of this fact we can be proud.

Letter: Thank for supporting free trade

June 26, 2015 — 

I would like to thank our two U.S. senators, Cory Gardner and Michael Bennet, for voting in favor of Trade Promotion Authority and supporting free trade which benefits American farmers, businesses and consumers.

TPA simply allows for the negotiation of a trade deal that is not then subject to whatever special interest add-ons that lobby groups want to attach to it. It still requires that Congress do its job, review the negotiated deal, and then either pass or reject it based on its merits.

Trade is critical to the economy of the United States and of Colorado. Opening up markets around the world will help our local farmers and ranchers, manufacturers and may even provide new life for our local natural gas industry.

Once again, thank you to Sens. Gardner and Bennet for supporting Colorado jobs and economic growth.

Letter: Support firefighters

June 26, 2015 — 

Not long ago a windswept fire roared through the Catherine Store area. Thanks to the firefighters from Carbondale and surrounding communities and counties, not only was my house saved as well as the houses in Lions Ridge subdivision and who knows how many houses or lives up in the Missouri Heights area would have been lost if not for the valiant efforts of the brotherhood (and sisterhood) of firefighters.

While it is entirely reasonable for taxpayers to expect good fiscal management and transparency of such, it is even more reasonable to provide the firefighters with the equipment and training they need to protect our lives and properties as well as their lives in doing so.

The recent fire district survey that was mailed out as well as other efforts to communicate to the community is commendable. The next time this valiant group asks us taxpayers for some money, I hope more people reach for their wallets on their bottoms for the team that protects our bottoms.

Letter: 'My voice counts' on pot stores

June 26, 2015 — 

As an “adult inhabitant” of downtown Glenwood Springs, I would like to comment on the recent editorial in the PI about the moratorium and the subsequent ruling in favor of slowing down the proliferation of marijuana dispensaries.

First of all, I have had a medical marijuana license for seven years to help me successfully deal with the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. There is no doubt in my mind that marijuana works and I voted in favor of Amendment 64 to legalize it for recreational use. I also live in downtown Glenwood Springs, in close proximity to one of the recreational outlets at the corner of 11th and Grand Avenue. They are good neighbors and honestly work to lessen the impact of a popular retail business that operates in a quiet, family neighborhood environment.

My issue comes from the industry wanting more. With two dispensaries seeking permission to operate within 350 feet of an existing dispensary, please refer to the Glenwood Springs Application Code/Local Licensing Authority Title 050.090.050. That section of the current regulations clearly states:

“The Local Licensing Authority shall consider whether the application meets the requirements of the CRMC and City Code, the facts and evidence adduced as a result of its investigation, as well as any other facts, the reasonable requirements of the neighborhood for the class of license for which application has been made, the desires of the adult inhabitants and any other pertinent matters affecting the qualifications of the applicant for the conduct of the type of establishment proposed.”

As a citizen of GWS it is within my rights to question the wisdom of flooding the downtown with marijuana-related businesses. The chamber of commerce is attempting to further the image of GWS as a family destination resort. Is a Glenwood Springs that opens the floodgates to an unlimited number of marijuana-related industries really what we want?

Citizen activism is essential to a democracy. I take issue with the PI’s stance that allowing the opinion of adult inhabitants “is a dangerous precedent and a bad way to run a town.” I applaud the City Council tackling this thorny issue. Legal marijuana and how to manage it is a new frontier for small communities in Colorado. We need to consider those who live downtown and the future of the downtown neighborhoods they support.

This is not a “popularity contest.” Rather, an opportunity to establish guidelines for a new industry based on input from those in the community. My voice counts.

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