Letters to the editor: A full Sunday buffet of readers’ opinions
Delay the vote on Sirko’s contract
As a Roaring Fork School District parent, I am extremely concerned that the board is considering a three-year contract extension for Superintendent Diana Sirko. I am further alarmed to learn the board intends to vote on the matter as soon as Dec. 10.
Superintendent Sirko has done a fine job stepping in and stabilizing the district after newly hired Superintendent Rob Stein had to withdraw due to a family emergency. She deserves credit for subsequently bringing Rob Stein on as assistant superintendent and chief academic officer, and we are grateful for her service.
However, may I remind the board that after an exhaustive search fueled by extensive public input, Rob Stein was overwhelmingly the top choice for the superintendent position, and Dr. Sirko was brought in as an interim leader. A contract extension for Dr. Sirko, especially one that stretches three years, would have significant ramifications for the district, including the potential (perhaps likely) loss of the visionary Rob Stein. I urge you to postpone any vote regarding the Roaring Fork School District superintendent contract until such time as the public has the opportunity to become thoroughly informed and weigh in on the matter.
Julie Comins Pickrell
CASA makes a difference for children
Every day in this country, 1,900 children become victims of abuse or neglect, and four of them will die. Every day. Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) for Children is a network of 951 community-based programs that recruit, train and support citizen-volunteers to advocate for the best interests of abused and neglected children in courtrooms and communities. Volunteer advocates — empowered directly by the courts — offer judges the critical information they need to ensure that each child’s rights and needs are being attended to while in foster care.
Volunteers stay with children until they are placed in loving permanent homes. For many abused children, a CASA volunteer is the only constant adult presence in their lives.
The Ninth Judicial District is fortunate to have a CASA program in place, and we need our community’s support to improve the lives of more than 60 children in our district who have been affected by abuse and neglect. Our board of directors’ goal is to raise funds and awareness to have every case served in our district by 2016.
Please join us at our “CASA at the Grind” fundraiser and community awareness event from 5-8 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 10, at 701 Grand Ave., Glenwood Springs, to learn more about how you can join our movement and be a part of shaping the lives of some of our at-risk youth. To learn more about CASA of the Ninth and/or this event, please go to our website http://www.casaoftheninth.org or call us at 970-987-4332.
CASA is one place where a single individual — you — can make all the difference.
Board of directors vice president
CASA of the Ninth
Firefighters brighten children’s day
Thanks to the friendly firemen who were breakfasting at Rosi’s Bavarian on Nov. 30. They took time out of their day to chat with my and my cousin’s kids and give them stickers. The kids loved it.
After breakfast, my 6-year-old daughter insisted we stop by Fire Station No. 2 to say thank you and give the firemen a picture she had colored at the restaurant. Even though it was a weekend and the building was locked up, the friendly fireman saw a sad little girl walking away from the building and asked her if she wanted a tour of where they live and work. My daughter lit up with joy at the invitation and was amazed at all the different trucks and gear, and now I’m afraid I may have a future firefighter on my hands.
Thank you, gentlemen, for the kindness and courtesy you displayed to my daughter and family. It truly brought a lot of joy to a little girl on a Sunday morning.
Observations on Carbondale’s roundabout sculpture
“Sewing the future”? With cut flowers in vase? (Cut flowers are dead; aren’t they?) With invasive species? Maybe it means we’ll have more and more sculptures. How about a sculpture at every intersection? Wait, it’s an invasion; we have to take down the mother ship.
Are those flowers poppies?
Our future is climate change, by the way. This sculpture will help that how? How about actually growing something there we can eat? What about a giant round aquarium full of trout?
At least it won’t rust. And it is skinny enough to not obstruct the view of other cars chasing around the roundabout or to block our view of Sopris.
This is an example of human nature; keep people in the same room long enough and they come out with crazy ideas they would never have gotten on their own.
This is an example of people who can’t think of better things to do with their money. And, isn’t this another reason to raise the top marginal income tax rate?
Maybe it secretly cancels out cell phone transmissions so people will pay attention to their driving while in the roundabout. Or it is a cleverly disguised Verizon cell phone tower.
The emperor has no clothes.
Much more important: pedestrians have the right of way; be ready to stop.
Bridge is viable; bypass is not, for now
Since I have written several letters about the bridge/alternate route issue, I feel obligated to disclose the conclusion I have reached. It basically boils down to this: The bridge is a tangible plan in the final stages that is funded. The alternate route is a concept that depends on too many variables to consider it a viable prospect in the near future. What swayed me is that if we don’t build this bridge, there is no guarantee that the regional Environmental Impact Statement will ever be initiated, and there is no guarantee that if the study does get done (three years, $10 million, I’ve been told), that we will accept the one recommended route, which leaves us where we are now, no consensus on location or how to pay for it. In other words, no bridge, no alternate route and no time, which is way worse than we are now.
While I strongly believe it is “right” that the EIS should have been done first, facts are that it wasn’t, so based on reality, to me, the “best” solution is to embrace the bridge. “Best” wins over “right.” For those of you who worked so hard to save Grand Avenue, thank you. It is a worthy cause and a valiant fight. And thanks to everyone who patiently answered my queries. But, in the end, I have to be for the bridge.
Tragically, I think the core of the issue is that the era of the quaint, small town might be over, gone with the horse and buggy. Growing traffic challenges are only going to get worse and we simply aren’t a small town anymore. We never will be again. But, with good planning, that doesn’t mean Glenwood will lose its charm or livability. On Dec. 1, a PI editorial floated an idea worthy of consideration. What we know for sure is that Glenwood will always retain some of that small-town feeling, though in a different way. Change is tough. The next few years will be brutal. But maybe when the bridge is built and it’s over, we’ll wonder what the fuss was all about. I remain hopeful. Anyway, there will always be a lot to love about Glenwood Springs.
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