Wednesday letters: airport, climate change, bad roads
Future council could decide to close airport, sell property
A July 19 article creates confusion about the ballot question proposed by a local citizens’ group, Save Our Small Airport (“SOSA”).
City Attorney Hanlon says that the ballot language “would seem to mean that we would have to go to an election to release [an] easement on an abandoned service line.” This is incorrect. If a service line in an easement is abandoned, that property is no longer being used for government purposes, so no election would be required.
The ballot question proposed by SOSA has nothing to do with this concern.
The proposed amendment to Section 13.2 of the City Charter reads as follows, with new language in bold:
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“Neither lands owned and/or used by the City for park, airport, or governmental purposes, nor water rights, shall be sold or conveyed without an affirmative vote of a majority of the qualified electors. The City shall continue to own, operate, repair, and maintain its airport, including the facilities, improvements, and 3,305 foot runway as configured on January 1, 2021, unless and until a majority of the qualified electors of the City approve the sale or redevelopment of the airport property. Nothing in this provision shall prohibit the City from constructing a tunnel under the airport runway or extending the runway. Nothing in this provision, however, shall prohibit the City from exchanging, or changing point of diversion of water rights without such vote.”
The language not bolded is already in the City Charter, including the requirement for a vote to sell property used for governmental purposes. Further, Colorado law requires a vote before a city sells “property used or held for any governmental purpose.”
Mr. Hanlon also says, “Currently, if the City wanted to sell the airport, that decision would require an election.” That is true today because City Council has kept the airport open and uses the property for governmental purposes. However, a future City Council could decide to close the airport, cease using the land for a governmental purpose and then sell the property to a developer with no vote of the people.
‘Voice from the wilderness’
“A voice from the wilderness” is a phrase that goes back to John the Baptist, who announced the coming of the Messiah. Well, my middle name is John. This phrase now describes something being said by very few, which could have very important consequences but that nobody pays attention to.
Like a “Cassandra.” Like the Colorado scientist that tried to tell the pandemic community that the COVID-19 virus was spread through the air. The WHO, the CDC and the NIH told him to get lost. Only months later, after many died, did they start to come around with masks and separation.
The town of Carbondale has just embarked on an elaborate (and expensive) update of something called the Comprehensive Plan. It is 140 pages long and covers many topics. Let me know if you know anyone who has ever read it.
But what I and a few others keep saying lately is that Carbondale, with its “small town character” (words repeated often in the Comp Plan) is not paying enough attention to the one main problem of the day: global warming. Instead, some people think our main problem is not having enough buildings. Apparently, we need more bank buildings, a lumber yard that we never needed before, more mini storage, more restaurants, hundreds more apartments and plenty of single-family houses. And a lot more traffic.
All that makes our problem worse.
We actually have some real wilderness nearby that is in grave danger of burning up because the temperature and the dryness keep increasing. We need a major focus on climate change and protecting what we have. Don’t do that, and our Carbondale area will be another wilderness.
Visit Glenwood Park
Wyatt Keesbury (Garfield County Road and Bridge director) needs to visit Glenwood Park before stating that the city of Glenwood Springs should “take on all of West Glenwood.”
A simple drive through Glenwood Park will demonstrate the war-zone-type street disrepair, and maybe he will change his mind. City Council should also tour this neglected area as well, since there are hundreds of taxpayers (and voters) living in Glenwood Park, yet council constantly ignores the dire street situation within this subdivision. Focus on your taxpayers. Focus on Glenwood Park.
Glenwood is so “full” right now, yet there are a multitude of apartments on the planning block. Personally, I think they should all be canned — the town is ruined enough from excessive growth. Please take care of your existing infrastructure before considering any further development. Let’s see if you can do that first. I doubt it.
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