Wednesday letters: Candidate intro, more endorsements, canyon speeding

Meet Charlie Willman, in his words

“A politician tells constituents what they want to hear. An elected official governs” — Liz Granderson, Los Angeles Times.

I have lived, worked and served the citizens of Glenwood for 47 years and for four years I have served as your Ward 3 representative. At all times I have governed and not made decisions simply to secure my reelection. I have served as a volunteer on many nonprofit boards. I am currently Chair of Mountain Valley Developmental Services and serve on River Bridge Regional Center’s Board. I started Garfield Legal Services (Alpine Legal) providing free legal help to all segments of our population.

I ask your support — understanding my vision, knowledge and proven leadership skills. Each decision I have made and will make is based on long term vision “will this be good in 10 years,” on my knowledge of the city, on input from citizens and on my ability to lead council to collaborative decisions.

I bring 15 years of service to the City:

– Chair DDA starting Seventh Street development and providing needed parking

– Financial Advisory Board since 2018. I understand and know how the complex city finances work — important to all decisions.

– Past member Transportation Commission leading to development of a traffic management association which in turn will lead to a transit management plan to reduce traffic growth.

– As board member of the Colorado’s Municipal League — I am a leading rural voice to prevent statewide interference in our local zoning regulations and to ensure available state funding for our local housing needs.

During the last four years Council has:

– commenced a comprehensive street reconstruction program

– started cost effective citywide broadband service

– limited short-term rentals

– returned recycling to downtown

– responsible budgeting and spending

– opposed quarry expansion

– established a citywide trash and recycling program reducing fees for most families.

My dedication to service, my vision, my knowledge and my leadership are all reasons that I ask for you to vote for me for Ward 3.

Charlie Willman, candidate for City Council, Glenwood Springs

Zalinski will listen

Erin Zalinksi knows Glenwood Springs. She started a small business on Grand Avenue. She ran it successfully through the economic challenges of the past four years. She has raised a family, engaged with local issues, and never shied away from asking difficult questions. Erin is who we need on Glenwood Springs City Council.

There is a misconception running through the town that thinking for yourself means being contrary to everything. Erin’s opponent works on this premise. I encourage anyone who is still considering their City Council vote to watch a recording from any regular city council meeting on the City of Glenwood’s YouTube channel. Watch long enough, and you will almost certainly see Tony Hershey interrupting and possibly berating not only his fellow city council members, but also the members of the public if he doesn’t like what they have to say.

Critical thinking requires active listening. And living in a mountain town community means treating your neighbors with respect.

Erin Zalinski knows that when the people of Glenwood — her future constituents — take time from their lives to comment on matters which will impact their future, they are always worth hearing.

There is an ever-widening gap in trust between residents and our town’s leadership. Erin Zalinski will bring the savvy decision making of a small-business owner and the passion of a longtime local who loves her home to bridge this gap. More than anything, Glenwood Springs needs city council members who are willing to listen.

Lindsay DeFrates, Glenwood Springs

Reelect Willman

It is with pleasure that I write this letter of support for Charlie Willman. I am the Executive Director of the Child Advocacy Center, River Bridge Regional Center and Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner program, Mountain West SANE Alliance.

I have had the pleasure of working with Charlie since 2018 when he started serving on our Board of Directors. I know that Charlie gives his time to other organizations, and we were truly humbled that he agreed to join our team. 

Since joining the board, Charlie has been able to offer insights and support to me and our board on general board governance. He has also assisted me with legal issues as they have come up. He is always ready to offer advice and support to our organization pro bono. All this is beyond the regular Board of Director duties that he also fulfills.

I have enjoyed working with Charlie immensely. I found him to be professional, personable and dedicated to the cause. Charlie takes his volunteer opportunities seriously and with enthusiasm. 

I support Charlie’s bid for re-election on Glenwood Springs City Council and I am confident that he will be committed as he is with everything he does.

Blythe Chapman, Glenwood Springs

Jail for speeding

Re: Glenwood Canyon accidents and speeding. The fact that people from out of town get a ticket, then pay a fine, is no big deal for many tourists. But ugh, putting people in jail just costs the taxpayers money. Bigger fines — or suspension of license — might be more impactful and cost the taxpayers less.

However, a threat of jail might work! Can you imagine the signs at the beginning and end of the canyon: “Speeding? If convicted for speeding in the canyon: 10 days jail,” could get people’s attention. The law could be drafted in such a way that a conviction would be unlikely … it’s probably the message that counts.

From a local lawyer: “It’s always fascinating what people don’t seem to know. This person who says there should be civil liability on carriers, does that person (the city attorney?) really not know that carriers get sued virtually every time there is an accident, whether or not the accident was the trucker’s fault? One thing that is interesting, in the GSPI article, the wording around the 22% “cite” implies that the motor vehicle accidents were caused by the Commercial Motor Vehicle, when I’m not sure that’s what was intended…

To the extent CMVs are at fault for causing the motor vehicle accidents, the way our laws are, people are able to set up trucking companies who have no business doing so. Poorly-run companies can hire drivers who don’t know what they are doing, and then the trucking company has an insurer that pays the insurance limit and that’s that, until the person sets up another trucking company! 

What’s really needed is campaign finance reform. Corporations shouldn’t be able to pay for legislation that insulates poorly run companies from liability.

Chris McGovern, Glenwood Springs

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