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Letters to the Editor

Dear Editor,I would like to address the letters published in the Tuesday, March 24, edition of your paper. First, it is impossible to have an unbiased economic roadmap group when a co-chair of the committee owns the local Ace Hardware. Surprised there is opposition to Home Depot? Second, as Ms. Lindbloom pointed out, Carbondale citizens voted against a big box “a few years ago.” Today is not a few years ago. Today, Carbondale’s revenue base is pitiful. Carbondale will not grow its revenue base through natural resource development (straw bale houses). It is difficult for a town to survive on art galleries, coffee shops, a few busy restaurants, small lodging facilities, and a grocery store. Increasing taxes on local homeowners is not the solution, developing a strong tax basis through new retail stores is the solution. Imposing a size restriction on retail is ridiculous. By doing so, you are exponentially reducing the chance of growing your tax dollars.This is not a personal attack on any local business owner or Roadmap Committee member. I patronize many local businesses and know many of you personally. I will continue to do so if a big box marketplace is developed. A Home Depot or other big box will not put Ace Hardware out of business, pollute our skies, destroy our water, endanger our children as they walk to school, or destroy this area. It will do the exact opposite.Revenues raised will improve our roads and safety for our children, beautify parks and open space, improve/build bike paths and walkways and provide jobs.I agree that some affordable housing must be constructed in Carbondale. Voting against a big box will not help to create affordable housing.The developer of the marketplace has every right to benefit financially on his land through development. The town government and its trustees have no right to limit the developer’s profits by restricting the size and the possible tenants he can attract.Don Van DevanderCarbondale

Dear Editor,Let’s set the record straight. On March 25 there was a collision between a Burning Mountain fire truck and a train. To be clear, the train was absolutely not seen until immediately prior to the collision and there was absolutely no way that any attempt was made to outrun it. There was no ignoring of any lights or bells. No warning devices were seen or heard by the driver or the two adult passengers in the fire truck. The train horn was only heard immediately before impact, and the driver’s decision to accelerate rather than hit the breaks probably contributed to their survival. Any preconceived statements to the contrary either verbal or written, including those of State Trooper Scott Gardner, are unfounded, unjustifiable, and completely mistaken. The erroneous statements given to the media by Trooper Gardner have cast unwarranted doubt on an already tragic accident. To imply that this firefighter is irresponsible, reckless, or actually intended to risk the lives of anyone is truly a shock coming from a fellow emergency responder. Fortunately, the witnesses to the event survived and the true story can be told. There was a volunteer firefighter and a family with a small child on board the engine. The survivor statements are contrary to Trooper Gardner’s speculative report. I believe that unless there is undisclosed evidence a retraction of his opinion and a public apology is due the parties involved. Patti CoryellAustin’s Coryell motherRifle


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