Monday Letters: Downtown parking needs, addressing wolves, protecting Thompson Divide, visiting Dolores River
“Local’s Pass” desperately needed downtown
The City of Glenwood yet again lacks specific direction when it comes to building a “thriving downtown.” How, you might ask? By chalking tires of anyone who parks downtown and handing out a $40 ticket if the vehicle is in the same parking spot for more than two hours.
I guess if you want to spend more than two hours downtown, you need to either hoof it back to your car and play musical chairs, or take the $40 dig. How fine and dandy is that! Not much of a “Welcome to Downtown Glenwood” – at least not in my opinion.
What ‘s even worse is that this grand plan totally disrupts the worker bees that are doing their best to make downtown thrive. The business owners, cooks, dishwashers, salon staff, retail — all the folks working in the downtown area — are now being forced into disruption. Imagine: “I would love to take your order — but right now I need to sprint to my car and move it or I will be charged $40 — so hang in there… I’ll be right back in about 15 minutes.” Hmm…
I would like City Council to consider providing a “Local’s Parking Pass” to anyone producing a paystub (or similar) that identifies them as a downtown worker. These are the people making your tax dollars thrive, so please don’t bite the hands that are literally feeding you. Thanks for your consideration.
Dave Heyliger, Glenwood Springs
Get used to wolves
In the Glenwood Springs PI weekly poll, one option provided to the question, “Was Gov. Polis right to veto the wolf lethal kill bill?” was, “No, anyone who feels threatened by a wolf should be allowed to shoot to kill.”
Many checked that response, even though people have always been permitted under federal law to kill any wolf to prevent them from killing a human. That makes the question moot. A rule under draft by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service also allows killing a wolf in self-defense. A third factor that makes it moot is the fact that in North America in the last 100 years, two humans have been reported killed by wild wolves; one in Alaska, where 7,000 to 11000 wolves live, and one in Canada, where 52,000 to 60,000 wolves live. The maximum number of wolves anyone expects to live in Colorado is around 1,000.
Wolves are the least dangerous of all North American large predators. We need to get used to it, and stop scaring everyone by perpetuating the myth of the big, bad wolf. In Colorado, in 2017, there were 34,933 stray dogs. Meanwhile, CDC reported dog-bite-related fatalities — U.S., 1995-1996. From 1979-1994, attacks by dogs resulted in 279 deaths of humans in the U.S. Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, reports: Fatal dog attacks in the United States cause the deaths of about 30 to 50 people in the US each year, and the number of deaths from dog attacks appears to be increasing. Around 4.5 million Americans are bitten by dogs every year, resulting in the hospitalization of 6,000 to 13,000 people each year in the United States (2005).
Wolves were restored to Yellowstone in 1995. From 1995 to 2021, 113,857,558 visitors have enjoyed the park, and 1,123,136 backcountry-use nights have been recorded. Not one person has been injured by a wolf.
Protecting Thompson Divide, Four Mile Park
My family and I have been in the Roaring Fork Valley for almost seven years and we love it here. One of the things we love the most is the easy access to our public lands. One great example is Four Mile Park in the Thompson Divide. Just a few minutes from our home we can appreciate the cooler weather while camping, mountain biking and hiking. Our kids always enjoy our colorful hikes in the fall with their friends and every year they look forward to walking in such beauty. We also enjoy our times on the river and lakes, it’s so refreshing to jump in the cold water for a little bit.
Right now, the Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management (who manage our public lands) are considering whether to protect the Thompson Divide from oil and gas development with an administrative mineral withdrawal. This would prevent any oil and gas companies from leasing these lands for the next 20 years and ensure the Thompson Divide and places like Four Mile Park stay as they are: beautiful and a wonderful place for families to enjoy nature. Until June 16 the Forest Service is accepting comments from the community on whether to protect this special place. You can show your support by submitting a letter through Wilderness Workshop webpage at https://wildernessworkshop.org/take-action/. We are so lucky to have these public lands and I hope that we preserve our public land’s natural beauty for generations to come.
Marlon Funez, Glenwood Springs
Dolores River is a gem
The “Protect the Dolores Film Tour” at TACAW was very well-attended on Wednesday, May 31. If you have not hiked or rafted the Dolores River Canyon Country, you are missing a stunningly beautiful landscape!
The Dolores River is in southwest Colorado and is over 170 miles long. It is the only red rock river canyon in Colorado. It runs from high alpine country above 12,000 feet all the way to the desert, meeting up with the Colorado River.
As one of the speakers, Regina Lopez-Whiteskunk, of the Ute Tribe said, “This is my home and heart and we need to protect this area for all future generations!” I couldn’t agree more.
It will take all of us to help protect the Dolores River Canyon and the time is now! Please consider signing the following petition located at this website, https://www.protectthedolores.org/take-action. For more information on the Delores River; https://www.americanrivers.org/river/dolores-river/.
Richard Walker, Carbondale
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