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Your Letters

Post IndependentGlenwood Springs, CO Colorado

Representative Curry’s statesmanlike decision to renounce Democratic affiliation in the District 61 race to focus more on constituent concerns struck me as consistent with her honesty and integrity.Thank goodness our current representative Roger Wilson set me straight. He pointed out that to get things done in politics you must join the donkey gang or the elephant gang. He pointed out that these independents may have good ideas and represent their constituents, but it’s a wasted vote for those without gang support. And, as Ms. Curry found out, getting on the ballot in the first place is hard if not a gang member. The national donkey gang poured money into District 61 to demonstrate that even politicians in leadership positions cannot quit the gang without consequences. Otherwise the next thing you know some goofball would suggest that we might work in a nonpartisan way. I mean, really.If that were to happen, Mr. Wilson could teach such goofballs the error of their ways. Or he could always go to our schools to help teach the children that joining a gang is the best way to get things done and get protection. Not.Regards,Rich GrantBasalt

Whether or not inflammatory or narrow-minded rhetoric had anything to do with the Tucson tragedy, such rhetoric is up for discussion. I suggest the following to educators, as a means to achieve a more objective outlook and calmer expression by the public:1. Make debate a required class (not club) in every secondary and trade or technical school (to pick up high school dropouts) nationwide. Require every student to debate each side of controversial subjects.2. Assure that all sports follow the sportsmanship “qualities of fairness, courtesy, and grace in winning and defeat”. (RH 1997). Opponents should be treated as friendly competitors, not enemies.Julian VogtGlenwood Springs

In response to the letter claiming “concerned” group not representative:When my wife and I purchased our building lot in 1988, from the Battlement Mesa Company, we were not informed that there were 10 designated well pads in Battlement Mesa or that gas drilling was even contemplated. When we built our house in 1998, we again were not informed of the well pads, and at that time there were very few gas rigs and none were operating in or around the Battlement Mesa area. Representatives of BMC assured us that this was a retirement community?When we moved here in 1998, the area was thriving with many small established businesses that serviced the needs of the growing retired population and tourist industry. Property values were reasonable and stable, employment was stable and long term, the environment was clean and very attractive – contributing to stable long-term growth.That all changed when the gas industry arrived. The drilling companies began drilling operations in the heavily populated areas like Battlement Mesa, instead of on the thousands of acres of sparsely populated land, seemingly, so that they could utilize the infrastructure – such as the roads and water supplies – in order to maximize their profits. This resulted in pollution of the air and water and destruction of the scenic environment. Property values and rent were artificially inflated and as a result many small businesses and a great many of the retirees left the area. Due to the present economy, many of the drilling rigs and their transient workers have left the area leaving in their wake devastated property values and very few permanent stable jobs. The environment is no longer clean and attractive so there is very little left to attract retirees, home buyers, small business, or the tourist industry to the area, resulting in further lowering of property values.I can assure the letter writers that there are a large number of residents besides the Battlement Concerned Citizens who are very upset by what has happened here and would leave if they could only find someone who would purchase their properties.Garry EvensonBattlement Mesa

The recent Arneson/Perrin letter (Jan. 11, 2011) implying that the long-time residents of Battlement Mesa comprising Battlement Concerned Citizens are a small and uninformed group wrongly opposing the proposed gas drilling next to our homes demands strong rebuttal.Our first action involved a petition by some 350 long-time homeowning families. We have a constitutional right to be concerned about the historical and repetitive dangers of gas drilling and production close to our homes. When many of us bought our property at the close of the oil shale boom and fiasco, we were assured our community was ideal for “retirement and recreation” and that we would have a homeowners association empowered to keep it that way. So much for corporate greed and disrespect for the contract and the political pliability of county governance.That the dangers of gas drilling and production include serious explosive and/or long-term health impacts are historically demonstrated especially when close to human residences. It is also provable and demonstrable that any significant long-lasting job creation in gas drilling is a myth. I am a World War II Veteran, Reg. Prof. Engineer (retired) and Battlement Mesa homeowner since 1994.Larry SoderbergParachute

ARTICLE XXIX, Section 1 of the Colorado Constitution reads as follows: “The conduct of … local government officials must hold the respect and confidence of the people. … They shall, therefore, avoid conduct that is in violation of their public trust or that creates a justifiable impression among members of the public that such trust is being violated. Any effort to realize personal financial gain through public office other than compensation provided by law is a violation of that trust.”It would be a violation of the sworn oath to defend the constitution of Colorado and a violation of the trust of “We the People” if any Garfield County official also has a royalty agreement with a natural gas drilling company to develop natural gas within the boundaries of Garfield County.Carl & Karen McWilliamsSilt

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