Friday letters: Cardondale fire board, PI TP, emergency tax fund, Alzheimer’s, GarCo suit

Schalit and Schilling for Carbondale fire board

Today I am writing in support of two outstanding candidates for the Carbondale & Rural Fire Protection District board of directors; Sydney Schalit and Gene Schilling. We need these two down to earth, intentional, grounded individuals. While they bring differing perspectives and histories, they have shown common sense collaboration, cohesive approaches, and critical thinking to the Fire and Protection District board.

Sydney Schalit brings a wealth of communication and marketing skills. These skills assisted in passing two ballot measures under two different fire chiefs. These measures helped our community to implement major upgrades to equipment, training and facilities to protect each of us. She also was a champion for mental health access for our men and women putting their bodies and mind in harm’s way for us. Being a past Mountain Rescue Responder, I wish we would have had this kind of mental health access in the past.

Gene and Sydney understand the grit and grace, courage and humility, that come with being a fire person, first responder, paramedic or any number of support personnel and volunteers that make our communities safe.

Please support Sydney Schalit and Gene Schilling for positions on the Carbondale & Rural Fire Protection District board of directors.

Garry Schalla


Another way for the PI to help out

Continue to print the Post Independent — the town needs could use the toilet paper.

Sean Elias

Glenwood Springs

We need an emergency tax fund

Dear Senator Bennett,

Here is an idea to deal with all the financial help people and small businesses will need:

How about introducing a bill to create a COVID-19 Emergency Tax Fund, paid by all the companies such as Amazon, Apple, Microsoft and many other giants who avoid paying federal taxes (I’m missing probably hundreds and maybe I unfairly included some). How about doing the patriotic thing so — guess what? — the economy is saved and people next year can still buy their products.

Also I would add in that bill that people with fortunes over $50 million pay a one time contribution of 2% of their cash assets.

This will help not only the people financially but mentally and emotionally.

Bernie is right when he talks about the huge gap in the country. Well, this is a stellar opportunity for those with so much to help their country and fellow citizens who will be so affected by this invisible war.

Veronica Whitney


Alzheimer’s is a growing crisis

One in 10 Americans age 65 and older has Alzheimer’s dementia today. Colorado is home to 76,000 of them. That’s almost exactly the seating capacity of Empower Field at Mile High. Additionally, 256,000 Coloradans are caring for at least one loved one with the disease.

Researchers and scientists at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) need an additional $354 million to stop this disease. I am urging Congress to provide these funds to NIH next year for this purpose.

Thank you to Congressman Scott Tipton for joining our fight to end Alzheimer’s in Congress and supporting NIH funding efforts in the past.

Sources for all statistics: Alzheimer’s Association 2020 Facts & Figures found at

Judy A. Noel, MSSW, Ph.D.

Alzheimer’s Association Ambassador

GarCo says see you in court

I was in attendance at the Dec. 10 Air Quality Control Commission public forum where input was requested before the AQCC devised new air pollution regulations for the oil and gas industry. There was a commissioner from Rio Blanco County there and a few other industry proponents, but nobody from Garfield County government.

I suppose the GarCo commissioners were saving their bullets for the courtroom because, along with nine other counties, they’ve filed a lawsuit to strike some of the AQCC’s rules. 

Again, the commissioners are putting money ahead of the health and safety of their constituents just as they did in opposing Proposition 112 and Senate Bill 181. There’s no question the volatile organic compounds and greenhouse gases emitted by oil and gas extraction negatively impact public health and safety and the climate.

Oil and gas industry advocates are using the same scare tactics they trotted out in the past. Regulations will devastate the local economies by chasing the industry away, the commissioners say. 

I’ll tell you what’ll shut down Roaring Fork Valley businesses: We’re seeing it now with tourism collapsed by the coronavirus pandemic. Face it, commissioners, western Colorado is a tourist trap, not an industrial center. Due to automation, the oil and gas industry doesn’t employ that many workers, anyway.

The suit alleges the AQCC broke its own rules when it embraced suggestions from community groups like the Grand Valley Citizens Alliance. The GVCA has been complaining about emissions from industry activity and proposing action to county governments for decades. They turned to the state because their local representatives turned a deaf ear. The commissioners have only themselves to blame.

Garfield County Commissioner Tom Jankovsky said, “The rules cost more than the gas they’re producing on an annual basis.” That’s because the fracking boom and a reduction in demand has created a glut of natural gas that has driven the price through the floor. Natural gas, along with all the fossil fuels, is an obsolete product.

Fred Malo Jr.


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