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Post Independent
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

Jim Yellico is running for Garfield County Assessor this Nov. 2 against John Gorman, an official who has done as he pledged: to ensure that all property is fairly and accurately valued.

Audits conducted on his watch have ensured the collection of back taxes and interest amounting to $6 million as of September 2010. Such efforts have promoted fairness in taxation to the benefit of individual property owners and corporations alike.

Reports from the campaign trail indicate that Mr. Yellico is an upstanding and amiable enough person, yet doesn’t appear to embody the voice of reason and deliberation of a candidate for an office of this gravity.



John Gorman epitomizes reason and deliberation. He is regarded highly not only among informed constituents, but also by others in his line of work who named him Co-Chair of the Oil and Gas Committee, Colorado Assessors Association.

Jim Yellico’s campaign literature shows him grasping for something of substance to say without much success: 1) upgrading the assessor’s website – the website is new and provides easy access to up to the minute property and sales information; 2) refraining from hiring outside professionals – using contract commercial appraisers has proven to be very cost effective and improved service over time; and 3) working with the gas industry, which Gorman does now to the benefit of all taxpayers.



Such examples are slender reeds indeed to support a campaign for a position charged with responsible, incisive accounting for millions of dollars in public monies. No, favoring some at the expense of others is inappropriate. Taxpayers are taxpayers at the Assessor’s office, all entitled to the same fair treatment.

John Gorman has rendered and will continue to render admirable service for Garfield County. He should be re-elected. A vote for John Gorman is a vote for experience and knowledge of the job and a promise for a fair assessment for all.

Jerry Rankin

Glenwood Springs

As a supporter of Kathleen Curry, I frequently hear the argument that a vote for her is a wasted vote that will only pull support from whichever candidate the other side of the conversation supports.

What this tells me is that despite Ms. Curry’s status as a write in candidate, she is, indeed, a real candidate, feared by both parties. Do not compare her situation to that of Ralph Nader in the 2000 presidential election. She already has a track record for this position, and she is hugely popular; were it not for parliamentary procedure, she would probably be running unopposed. Moreover, if yard signs are an indicator of success, Kathleen has already won Gunnison County thereby queering this election.

Unlike most candidates for any office in this election, Kathleen chose her unaffiliated status so as to not be obligated to the party politics that all of us, regardless of affiliation, are finding so disillusioning. As an independent candidate, Kathleen is free to vote her conscience, not the pocket books of party supporters. The only way to diminish special interests in our political system is to start supporting candidates who are not “bought and paid for.”

So, if you are inclined to vote for her, but worried that your vote won’t count, vote for your candidate and not against someone else’s. When you vote for our representative at the State House, you won’t see her name on the ballot, so go to “Write In” at bottom of the list, check the box and write “Kathleen Curry.”

Anne Rickenbaugh

Aspen

I need to respond to David McGavock’s letter to the editor of Oct. 6, 2010. In most letters to the editor individuals express their individual view points. I was appalled by Mr. McGavock’s letter; he misquoted me and took my words out of context.

For an individual who is educated and an administrator for the school district, he should be more prudent in researching his facts.

I listened to the tapes of the Glenwood Springs Issues and Answers Forum. My statement was, “I will not over regulate oil and gas. They are regulated at the State and Federal levels.

We do not need to have duplicate regulations at the County level. I will make decisions on oil and gas that have to do with county land use and planning and building codes.”

To over regulate oil and gas is unproductive, inefficient and creates more red tape. At the county level, we need to work with oil and gas, hold them responsible to the same standards we hold all businesses and be sensitive to the environment, landowners and community issues.

As a County Commissioner, I will work with state, federal and county government to follow and uphold our rules, regulations and laws that govern environmental issues in Garfield County.

For more information about my platform please go to my website http://www.votetomj.com.

Tom Jankovsky

Glenwood Springs

Candidate Garfield County Commissioner

Wow, what an amazing thing-two individuals, who have put aside their perceived differences, for the good of the community. I want to congratulate Tom Dalessandri and Doug Winters for their ability to see the task at hand, instead of the political party.

Even as a lifelong republican, I have always voted for the person, or the issue, and in this case it has to be changed.

Everyone has issues, and no one is perfect, but the constant barrage of problems in the sheriff’s position has to stop; Vallario’s affair, the fact that she was an employee, the lawsuits, the chaos in the jail, the spending, the alienation of our incredible search and rescue teams, the use of company time and computers to solicit contributions-from employees, no less, and most of all the arrogance. The inability to see that he has done anything wrong is just astounding.

The Republican Party spoke out in the primary, and it was not an endorsement as Vallario claimed. Very close to half the voters showed their dissatisfaction, which is at best, an embarrassment to an incumbent sheriff.

Dalessandri did a great job in his last term, and deserves your vote now.

Alex Duerte

Rifle

Early voting has begun. Big money is trying to buy Colorado’s votes. I have to counter their too often untrue, simple-minded slogans with some not so short words of my own.

I want the man who has shown guts! I want the guy who has shown savvy. I want the man who can come up with solutions for overlapping issues. I will vote for John Salazar for Congress.

Here’s why. Salazar showed guts when he did not sign the Wall Street bailout to the rich and reckless.

Instead he has created jobs for his citizens by the dollars he has brought to Colorado for important water projects to expand, rehabilitate and repair dams, canals, reservoirs for both drinking water and irrigation. Salazar “gets” our state’s water and land issues.

Salazar has worked to bring quality-of-life benefits and increased job opportunities to his district through his expansion of rural broadband access, additions to veteran’s health care, incentives to bring more practicing doctors and nurses to serve western Colorado as well as expansion of medical facilities and training, and transportation improvements at Grand Junction airport and for the Glenwood Springs corridor connections .

To Salazar’s support of Health Care, I say “hurrah”. He showed guts and savvy by supporting a cost-saving idea which can improve the lives of so many Americans, juggling that life benefit against companies who will spend millions to lobby on behalf of their profits, but will price even children out of their markets.

He has shown courage. I want to see John Salazar re-elected.

Rena Francis

Palisade

I want to tell the community why I support the re-election of Sheriff Lou Vallario.

I used to deliver this very newspaper, this meant being out on the county roads from New Castle to Parachute in the early hours of the morning from midnight until 7 a.m. During that time I was involved in an accident a 2 a.m. and was unable to get a deputy for assistance because then Sheriff Tom Dalessandri did not feel there was traffic or population enough to support 24-hour coverage by deputies.

Since then I have retired from deliveries but I know there are many out on our roads at this time in the morning and I feel they are much better protected with the current 24-hour coverage.

Mr. Dalessandri states that we do not have a serious crime problem, or a need for S.W.A.T. I believe him to be very wrong, and I know I feel much safer with the current level of protection that Sheriff Vallario has given us.

I believe he has been forward looking with the population growth and potential dangers living in a county that is not the rural country place some want to believe. I respect the job he doing and he has my vote.

In the interest of full disclosure, I will say my son serves as a deputy for the county, but I will add I am very proud that he serves a man Like Mr. Vallario.

Linda Martin

Rifle

Ten years ago the citizens of Colorado voted Medical Marijuana as a state constitutional right.

That right is now under assault by Garfield County elected officials. Can county voters deny patients rights put into the state Constitution?

By placing the bans on the ballot, the county is letting that happen. Their passage would also ensure that the Glenwood Springs City Council and other local governments will take their own steps to ban medical marijuana facilities.

Banning state licensed and tightly regulated medical marijuana facilities will not make medical marijuana go away. A ban on facilities “within the unincorporated boundaries of Garfield County” (as the ballot questions are put) will drive those rural facilities into our municipalities.

A further ban on facilities within our municipalities will simply move medical marijuana from a few businesses working at commercial and industrial properties to a proliferation of smaller unregulated growers and caregivers working out of their homes in our neighborhoods.

Recently passed Colorado House Bill 1284 allows the caregiver model to continue, even if local governments won’t allow medical marijuana businesses.

The ballot questions are not about banning medical marijuana, but rather where the facilities will be located.

A no vote on Garfield County Ballot Questions 1A, 1B, 1C will keep medical marijuana facilities regulated, inspected, and out of our residential areas.

Ryan Gordon

The Green House

Carbondale

We are faced with making a decision for our state regarding tax reform. I agree that there is a need for tax reform, but may I submit to you that amendments 60 and 61 and Proposition 101 are not the means by which this should be done.

I write to you today as one of the people that would be directly affected by these measures. My husband is a public servant whose paycheck is made by our tax dollars. Should these amendments and proposition pass, he will lose his job.

If you think that they are good for our economy, then I urge you to go talk to your local firefighters, EMTs and police officers. Ask them how these measures will affect their departments, themselves and their families.

Want to know how these measures will affect your child’s school?

Talk to your school district and they will tell you that they will have to close some schools and combine classes, which will cause even more crowded classrooms with even fewer teachers because they won’t have enough money to pay their teachers and paraprofessionals.

Want to know what it will do to our already poor highways? The state won’t be able to repair them because they won’t have the money that is allotted for that since the taxes on vehicles will be cut.

Yes, I am upset that taxes were raised without voter approval. I am upset that some government entities mis-use the funds that they do have.

However, if we pass these measures, many jobs will be lost, and our economy will be even worse. I beg all voters to please be informed of both sides before you go to the polls in the next few weeks. Your friends, families, and neighbors depend on you to be well informed on these measures.

Sheila Alvey

Rifle

I recently read Mr. Dalessandri’s article in the Post regarding his campaign. Perception and reality are miles apart. I had the privilege of being Lou Vallario’s first undersheriff and got a firsthand look at Tom’s operation.

What I saw was not very impressive. His policies and procedures were incomplete and poorly written. The outside of the sheriff’s office was designed a lot better than the inside. I could use up all 350 words just talking about design flaws.

I found it interesting that the sheriff’s personal office had leather furniture but the only detective had a sub-par camera that he had to get a grant to purchase.

The computer reporting system was in shambles. Reports taken in the western part of the county were hand written while the east-end deputies used a computer which made data recovery a nightmare.

Speaking of data, one of the first things we were advised upon taking over was that there was a serious shredding party going on. The halls were full of bags of shredded documents as reported by employees. There were no employee discipline files to be found anywhere.

To hear Tom talk about getting rid of professional standards and go back to his system is defiantly something that a person who has been out of the law enforcement business for eight years would say.

Tom may want to brush up on little things like due process and other labor law issues. I also find it interesting that Tom and that guy from Vail only want management jobs in Garfield County; it appears to be an economic endeavor rather than a community service one.

The citizens of Garfield County will be the ones who loose if Tom wins. If you want your resources managed correctly, vote for Lou Vallario.

Tim Templon

Fort Leonard Wood, Mo

Several recent letters to the editor state that Tresi Houpt represents the voters in balancing oil and gas operations and the environment. This is only partially true since she must recuse herself from all county votes on this subject given her position on the state oil and gas commission.

I therefore suggest that we keep her on the state oil and gas commission and elect a business leader to replace her as county commissioner. That candidate is Tom Jankovsky. Tom has the business background and leadership experience to move Garfield County forward. He has a plan to create jobs and diversify our local economy.

He knows first hand the financial hardships that we as voters are experiencing as he has been there. Tom Jankovsky has the knowledge and expertise to bring about positive change. Please join me in voting for our future.

Miranda Draper

Rifle

If you are a woman or love women, then I would strongly encourage you to vote for Michael Bennet for Senator. Michael has been effective in trying to move the pro-family and pro-woman agenda forward. His opponent is out of touch with mainstream women’s rights thinking.

For example, there have been four female Supreme Court justices in the history of America, with three currently serving. One female justice was appointed by President Clinton and two by President Obama. Senator Bennet was there to support both Obama appointees.

Michael supports equal pay for women and women’s right to control her body.

Ken Buck opposed abortion even in cases of rape and incest, asserts that fetus’ should be granted rights as persons, and has stated that he would sponsor a constitutional amendment banning abortion. Buck responded to a question about why a primary voter should select him over his primary opponent Jane Norton by stating, “Because I do not wear high heels.” Buck is now trying to “buck-pedal” from those statements but that is his view of women and their rights.

This is no laughing matter of a extreme politician either, there are 78 Republican candidates for congress, including five senate candidates that have pledged to oppose abortions in case of rape and incest. Time to wake up friends.

On the other hand, Michael Bennet has shown leadership to get things done for families. Health care reform has been a priority for a generation. When the health insurance lobby had just about defeated the recent efforts at reform health care, Michael circulated a letter that eventually gained enough support to get health care reform passed.

If you have a friend or family member with a pre-existing illness, they will soon be able to purchase coverage due to the reforms. If you or a family member have a recent college graduate coming home and into a struggling job market, they will have the ability to join their parents health care plan while they find a career due to the reforms. If you know a senior citizen who was choosing between food and medicines due to the holes in Medicare coverage, help is on the way due to the reforms.

Elections have consequences, especially for working families and women.

The Senate votes on judges who define people’s rights or who give corporation’s rights; senators vote on whether to enter warfare; and individual senators are granted right to obstruct or create solutions to problems facing our country. Vote for women, families, and solutions. Vote Michael Bennet for Senate.

Robert Schultz

Carbondale


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