Wednesday letters: County commissioners, missing Boebert, and Ascendigo |

Wednesday letters: County commissioners, missing Boebert, and Ascendigo

Wasted money

The American economist Art Laffer is credited with coining the metaphor: “In a democracy, the people get the government they deserve.” Accordingly. the people of Garfield County are getting the government they deserve in the three longtime incumbent Republican Garfield County Commissioners: Mike Samson. John Martin and Tom Jankovsky, and their “legacy inertia” toward developing new innovation technology policies that will reinvigorate the west Garfield County natural gas industry. 

A glaring example is their refusal to accept the demise of the “Second Wave” natural gas industry economic model and their continuing denial of the megatrend toward zero carbon emissions. 

Another point in fact is their squandered $1.8 million from O&G Mitigation Funds (in a “Dillon’s Rule” state) on a Denver attorney’s legal fees; for a fool’s errand to stymie Gov. Jared Polis’ SB181. Furthermore, their latest stroke of incompetence and denial is in allocating $65,000 per year (from the County’s Oil & Gas Mitigation Fund) for the next four years ($250,000) on economic studies of the impact of the recent rule makings by the COGCC and the Colorado Air Quality Control Commission on “fugitive methane emissions” and well setbacks of 2,000 feet. Samson, Martin, Jankovsky and Kirby Wynn would have the Garfield County voters believe, by Gov. Polis requiring 2,000 feet setbacks and the elimination of “fugitive methane” airborne pollution, that these new regulations will stymie future investments because “marginal wells” would be abandoned. (See: “County to study economic impacts of SB181” by John Stroud, Post Independent, March 3.)

Like it or not the Piceanse Basin natural gas industry is experiencing what Austrian economists’ term “creative destruction,” and the longer Samson, Martin and Jankovsky remain in power, the longer it will take for the investors in the natural gas industry of west Garfield County to return to profit.

Carl L. McWilliams

Glenwood Springs

Missing in COVID-relief action

Last week, while U.S. House members voted on a long awaited COVID-19 relief package, my representative, Lauren Boebert, was nowhere to be found. 

Instead of doing her job and being present to advocate for the needs and interests of her constituents in Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District, Rep. Boebert was absent, citing “the ongoing public health emergency.” 

The real emergency? She opted to attend the Conservative Political Action Conference in Orlando, where former President Trump was speaking. 

Boebert’s ongoing frivolousness and intoxication with Trump, Second Amendment and pro-life precludes her from being an effective leader for her constituents. Since taking office just two months ago, she’s already missed two floor votes and generated a mountain of controversy. 

People and families on the Western Slope are struggling. We’re saddled with the economic burdens of the pandemic and enduring environmental impacts on our land and water. We worry about wildfire management, responsible energy development and land use in this part of the state, but none of this seems to matter to Boebert as her platform is so singular and narrow minded. 

We need competent, compassionate leadership from the people who represent us in Washington, D.C. What we don’t need is another media-hungry puppet who is more invested in becoming a twitter celebrity than doing her job. Get her out!

Alison Birkenfeld


Ascendigo Blue Aspen success 

On behalf of Ascendigo Autism Services, we wish to share our deep gratitude for those who helped make our 10th annual Ascendigo Blue Aspen fundraising event a great success.

This year’s event was presented via Livestream over Presidents’ Day weekend from the iconic Hotel Jerome. During these unprecedented times, we were unable to safely host the hundreds of guests who normally attend our lively event at the Hotel Jerome. 

That said, we are forever grateful to the ardent supporters who participated this year in true blue fashion.

Ascendigo Blue Aspen has become one of Aspen’s premier charity events, helping to raise critical funding for the life-changing services and experiences we offer to more than 200 autistic individuals each year. With a mission to elevate the spectrum by empowering people, inspiring lives and shattering expectations, Ascendigo’s ability to deliver on this mission depends heavily on the generosity of the Roaring Fork Valley community.

We thank you for always welcoming and accepting our participants for who they are and the important role they play in our community. You help by providing culturally enriching activities, jobs, volunteer opportunities and many other supports to our clients.

Special thanks to Sentient Jet, Rolls Royce Motor Cars, The Aspen Times, Aspen Magazine, Hotel Jerome, Aspen Skiing Company, The Little Nell Hotel Group, Aspen Eventworks and the many other sponsors and donors who contributed to the success of Ascendigo Blue Aspen 2021. 

With some optimism, we look forward to returning next year with a spirited, in-person Ascendigo Blue Aspen 2022. Please mark your calendars for Feb. 19, 2022. We look forward to seeing you there!

Peter Bell

President & CEO

Ascendigo Autism Services


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