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Dear Editor,

Thank you for the front-page coverage of candidates running for state representative in District 61. It provided for an educational discussion at breakfast, Friday, Oct. 11.

As a Democrat, I would like to give the Democratic candidate my vote, but the candidate who is willing to take a stand on the population issue is the Independent candidate, Abba Krieger.

Today, the focus of the population issue is on immigration numbers, but politicians are not willing to hold numbers down. Your coverage of Gregg Rippy and Rick Davis provided Krieger as a contrasting figure. It appears that Abba Krieger is willing to take a stand.

I am in agreement with Abba’s statement that “we are allowing Third World countries not to take responsibility for their citizens who are taking jobs away from Americans.” This has been true for the low-wage- earning Hispanic citizens I know who are at risk, in the job market, with an increase in cheap labor from outside the country.

John Ristine


Editor’s note: To clarify, Krieger is a Natural Law Party candidate.

Dear Editor,

Oct. 21-25 was School Bus Safety week. The Re-1 Transportation Department would like to take this time to thank all of our dedicated bus drivers for the fantastic job they do.

Each school day, these drivers arrive at the bus barn in time to do a pre-trip of their school buses to make sure they are safe to do their daily route. The buses are leaving for their daily rounds anywhere from 5:50 to 6:45 a.m. Then the route starts all over at the end of the school day.

Each year they transport approximately 2,000 students to and from school every day. Bus drivers go through a rigorous training program to be able to safely transport children. Our drivers take this to heart. Safety is the number one priority on their minds while driving the school bus. All of our drivers live by the following saying:

“A hundred years from now it will not matter what my bank account was, the sort of house I lived in, or the kind of clothes that I wore. But the world may be much different because I was in the life of a child.”

Our hat goes off to the dedicated men and women that selfishly transport our children safely each day.

Larry Estrada,

transportation director

Carol Burns,

transportation supervisor

Glenwood Springs

Dear Editor,

Referendum 4A, proposed by the Friends of the Colorado River District, proposes a very small tax increase that could have a very large and important impact on improving drought-year water supplies throughout western Colorado. The lessons of the drought of 2002 should not be ignored. Referendum 4A should be approved by the voters.

Very truly yours,

Scott Balcomb

Glenwood Springs

Dear Editor,

From reading the political ads in the local newspapers, there seems to be some confusion as to which candidate your district attorney supports for sheriff of Garfield County.

I wholeheartedly support Sheriff Tom Dalessandri. Tom has earned another term. You only need to look at what the sheriff’s office was like before Tom took office to see what he has done.

Tom Dalessandri has beefed up the sheriff’s office by providing more deputies and better equipment. Sheriff Dalessandri provided 24-hour-a-day patrol to better protect our citizens. Before Sheriff Dalessandri was elected, many county residents had no access to the sheriff’s office after business hours.

Tom Dalessandri is the sheriff who worked with our county commissioners and the Jail Advisory Committee to finally complete a new county jail.

Tom Dalessandri has addressed the animal control problem. Recently the sheriff’s office took the initiative in getting a new, tougher vicious dog ordinance enacted. Sheriff Dalessandri is working to get approval from the county commissioners for an animal control officer.

Tom Dalessandri is the chairman of the TRIDENT Drug Task Force Board. The other board members, who include the chiefs of police of Glenwood Springs, Rifle, Carbondale, Meeker, Rangely, the sheriff of Rio Blanco County and the district attorney, elected him.

Tom Dalessandri has demonstrated that he is a cool head in a community crisis. When the wildfires were raging last summer, Sheriff Dalessandri and his staff were on top of the situation, working closely with federal and local disaster relief organizations. As the fires burned out, floods and mudslides became the concern. Again, Sheriff Dalessandri and his staff met the challenge.

Tom Dalessandri is a local sheriff with strong ties to state and national law enforcement organizations. Sheriff Dalessandri is the chairman of the County Sheriffs of Colorado statewide Training Committee and a member of the National Sheriff’s Association Weapons of Mass Destruction Committee.

Tom Dalessandri is an experienced and dedicated lawman who has served Garfield County well for eight years. He deserves another term to carry on the good work he and his staff have done for all of us and continue to build on his solid record of accomplishment.

Mac Myers

District Attorney

Ninth Judicial District

Dear Editor,

I read both articles submitted by Jack Wilson of New Castle and Jose Rodriguez of Rifle. I must say that Mr. Wilson was right on target concerning the present sheriff department of Garfield County, supervised by Sheriff Tom Dalessandri.

Being a former Parachute police officer, on more than one occasion I have heard deputies state they won’t cite or arrest because it is an election year and they don’t want to offend the voters. This is a tragedy because they have allowed politics to influence how they do their job and whether a victim will see justice served.

Mr. Rodriguez does have a legitimate concern about terrorism, as all Americans should have these days. But, I think he is off base to believe that citizens of Garfield County are not aware of how susceptible to a terrorist attack we are. The horrific attack that occurred on Sept. 11 attests to that.

I retired from the U.S. Army Special Forces, during which time I served as an anti-terrorism techniques instructor. I also was not aware that Sheriff Dalessandri was actively planning against any terrorist threat in Garfield County. I would have thought that he would actively engaged assistance from the municipal agencies, since he is short on personnel.

How can one actively plan against terrorism when one cannot even control the dogs at large on Battlement Mesa?

No, I feel the people of Garfield County deserve a man who believes in the philosophy `To Protect and Serve.’ That man is Lou Vallario.

Rick Ervin


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