Letter: Mayor endorses Arensman | PostIndependent.com

Letter: Mayor endorses Arensman

Leo McKinney
Glenwood Springs

The issues facing Glenwood Springs in the next four years are daunting to say the least, but certainly not unnavigable. Every issue we face is like an onion with many layers of complexity and consequence. The people of Glenwood Springs need leaders who are willing to dive into the nuances of each policy decision and carefully weigh all requests for funding allocations in order to cast salient votes that serve the greatest public good. Simply put, Glenwood requires leaders who will put our people and its public needs above special interests. In the 1st Ward, the best candidate to meet these ideals is Russ Arensman.

During my first two years in office, I had the honor of serving with Russ, but I also had the privilege of learning from him. Russ took his oath of office seriously and served his constituency quite well. He always kept the greater public good as the foundation for his positions on the issues.

When the economy took a downturn, Russ supported several policy decisions that were meant to incentivize local development and help keep our economy going. His input was instrumental in crafting our local preference policy that is still in place today. He supported business-friendly decisions like an ordinance allowing local Realtors to post “open house” signs.

In 2010, Russ supported codifying home-based businesses into the municipal code, thus giving legitimacy to many occupations. He supported ordinances that extended the city’s two-tiered economic incentive program for new development, which played a big role in bringing businesses like the Marriott hotels to the Glenwood Meadows. Throughout his term in office, Russ showed a willingness to be business-friendly by supporting a multitude of variance requests, while not setting aside the public interest and the public good.

As a matter of record, the City of Glenwood Springs as a government entity and as a community of hardworking people has been consistent in our opposition to energy extraction in the Thompson Divide. Our efforts to protect our economy, our way of life and, most of all, our quality of life began in the waning months of Russ’s term in office. He was a part of the initial discussions and support that steered us in the right direction and he continues to be a supporter of our efforts today. Russ understands that our diverse economy is connected to the use of public lands and public infrastructure. Where others have called our position a “NIMBY” approach, Russ has stood by the needs of our city and understands the negative consequences of this issue.

If you live in the 1st Ward, please cast your vote for Russ Arensman. He has the experience, is deliberative and shows sound judgment. Russ will serve the public’s best interest and help push us past the issues of today while keeping an ever watchful eye on tomorrow.

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