HOFFMAN: A council of flip-floppers?
Free Press Weekly Opinion Columnist
As Sarah Palin may pose, “How’s that hopey, changey thing working for ya?”
Remember that we recently had an election, and a reform slate created and promoted by the secret arm of our local Grand Junction Chamber of Commerce was created? Do we remember those folks were swept into office to undo the excesses of the scalawags holding city council seats? Do we further remember that those excesses were the promise of $3 million to the Avalon and the over-reliance on retention of TABOR monies?
Well, apparently the folks we voted into office immediately forgot their marching orders. They formally voted to continue to exclude sales tax revenues from TABOR calculations. They looked long and hard at the $3 million dollars for the Avalon and decided: “Heck, no, we are not going to spend $3,000,000 on this boondoggle, let’s increase it by $500,000 and spend $3.5 million instead.” They then reconsidered again deciding that maybe $3,000,000 was good enough (for now).
To quote Jim Nabors in his role as Gomer Pyle: “Surprise, surprise, surprise!” Are you feeling duped yet? It really makes one wonder why all those dollars were spent to depose Pitts, Kenyon and Luke only to continue exactly the same policies. No, one does not wonder why, one only realizes we have a city council that does not honor their word, finds principles convenient to abandon, and won election based on misrepresentation and the expenditure of thousands of dollars of special interest money. Perhaps our apathy may soon end.
It was just explained to me that the councilors listened to their constituents and changed their minds. If an opponent of theirs had done that, we would hear about “waffling” and “flip-flopping.” Mayor Sam, who was loud in his opposition to the Avalon project, now talks about a city-owned asset that deserves investment. If we are going to do it, we are going to do it right….. even if that means more money spent making a silk purse of the proverbial sow’s ear. Marty Chazen was the sole devotee to pre-election rhetoric and consequently the sole vote against moving forward with the contract to attempt to re-make the Avalon into something it was not meant to be and probably can never be.
Speaking of a special interest and the spending of money to mislead us. Remember the Brady Trucking debacle and all the jobs they would create if we said yes? Remember that, immediately after the election, they announced they had no plans to expand and create the resultant new jobs? What stooges we must be to have listened to them in the first place.
ABSURD RULE DEPARTMENT
An acquaintance recently approached me relative to the downtown Kiwanis project to erect a bench to honor longtime downtown businessman Guy Stephens.
It seems these civic-minded folk wished to erect a bench with an engraving acknowledging Stephens and his contribution to downtown. Their goal of five years was finally achieved and a bench now sits south of the downtown Alpine Bank building. You can drive by and see it right there on the north side of Rood Avenue. It is a fine concrete bench that looks as though it will survive many years of use.
Oddly, it is a plain concrete bench without obvious use or intent. It seems the City allowed the Kiwanis to erect the bench but did not allow them to inscribe the front of the bench as there is a city ordinance against such (???). Certainly, in the compendium of silly rules or governmental overreach, there could be a chapter devoted to this inane requirement.
If you want to know about the bench, its intent and purpose, please go to the rear of the bench and squeeze between it and the fence to the rear, get down on your hands and knees and read. There you go — the Guy Stephens memorial bench.
Recall last week I begged for consistency in positions, and now I call on the City to consistently apply this rule. If we cannot have engraving on the front of benches it only stands to reason that ads, posters, etc. could be included in such a ban. Therefore, we call upon the City to immediately enact a new law prohibiting all ads, inscriptions, posters and the like from the front of bus stops and benches. Move them to the back so they, like the inscription to Mr. Stephens, be not visible to the general public — it only makes good sense.
Jim Hoffman is a local Realtor and investor. He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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