Your letters: City Council, health care, traffic, more | PostIndependent.com

Your letters: City Council, health care, traffic, more

Why Kaup?

Shelley Kaup is running for the at-large seat and I strongly endorse her and hope you will consider voting for her if you vote in this election.

I can give you lots of reasons why to vote for Shelley and will just give you a few of my favorites:

Shelley has actively lived here in Glenwood Springs for 31 years with her husband, Dale, and three now-adult sons. Shelley is smart and a life-long learner with a civil engineering degree and working on her master’s in sustainable engineering. She is hardworking and has worked in private, public and nonprofit fields. She was an asset when she was on Glenwood Springs city council from 2007-2011. Shelley has a cooperative spirit and personality and gets along with just about everyone she meets. She is a good listener, too.

Shelley is such an attractive candidate. Please let me know if you have questions or concerns or want more information or to talk to Shelley directly.

M. Susan Cashel

Glenwood Springs

Helping cut traffic

The bridge closing will affect many people and businesses in a negative way, that is known. Why wait and see what happens, why not try something different?

Glenwood and CDOT need to ease commuter traffic counts during the closure. The closure will most likely have some negative effect on motels and restaurants south of the bridge. Why not dedicate some funding to purchase room and meal vouchers that commuters can buy at a discount? The funding could come from upvalley towns and employers who depend on the commuters, maybe the state or CDOT could pitch in some funding also. Motels and restaurants might provide a discounted rate to the fund that comes back to them in voucher-based form.

The commuters who decided to take advantage of the program would have to eat at least one meal, most would need two, for each night they chose a room over the commute. More money would be spent in the impacted businesses and some vehicles removed from traffic.

It might work.

Brad Gates

New Castle

Health care vs. tax breaks

Let me suggest a brief thought to pass to Rep. Scott Tipton:

The government of a world economic superpower is able and should be willing to provide adequate health care for all its citizens. This is a simple, undeniable statement on a moral question.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act was a step forward, but insufficient. The Republican replacement introduced in the House is more expensive than Obamacare. It will provide less coverage and care and these will be ratcheted down over time.

But, oh, those tax breaks for the wealthy.

Medicare for all, anyone?

David Schroeder

New Castle

Poacher protection act

Earlier this year Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, introduced H.R. 622 (Local Enforcement for Local Lands Act), also known as the “Poacher Protection Act.” This bill would abolish the law enforcement branches of the U.S. Forest Service and BLM and steer block grants to local sheriff’s offices to take up the slack.

The bill would leave millions of acres of public lands vulnerable to abuse and lawless behavior, taxing state and local authorities and fundamentally compromising Americans’ safety. The association of federal law enforcement said the bill will eliminate about 1,000 rangers, investigators and law enforcement personnel who patrol America’s backcountry alongside local sheriff’s deputies and state game wardens.

“I’m in no way belittling local law enforcement,” says Jay Webster, retired U.S. Forest Service law enforcement and investigations patrol captain. “However, the expertise in what we do as opposed to what they do is different. We respond to archeological crimes and catastrophic wildfires. No way would a sheriff’s office … be able to respond with resources to those kind of incidents.”

And as many county sheriffs have pointed out, their officers can’t enforce federal laws. This would, essentially, be a gift to poachers and drug cartels, providing even more opportunities for them to abuse public lands and diminish public safety. At its core, H.R. 622 caters to local anti-government groups, such as the armed extremists that took over a federal wildlife refuge in Oregon last year.

“As sportsmen, we look at this bill as anti-fishing, anti-hunting and anti-American,” says Randy Newberg, host of “Fresh Tracks” on the Sportsman Channel. “It’s one more way to diminish or eliminate the public lands concept.” Our law enforcement officers are on the front lines of conservation and already do more with less. Let’s give them the resources they need to do their jobs.

David Lien

Chairman, Colorado Backcountry Hunters & Anglers

Gillespie and candidate events

In reading the invitation to “Meet the Candidates” for Glenwood Springs City Council held recently, I noticed that all the candidates for the Council races were not advertised to be present. One candidate that I am specifically referring to is Don Gillespie in the Ward 5 race. I lived in Ward 5 for several years as a Glenwood Springs resident, though I now live in Rifle. I have gotten to know Don over the past year and I find him to be an individual who is ethical and deeply passionate about representing the residents of Ward 5 and the City of Glenwood Springs.

The ad in the Post Independent on March 9 did not indicate who is sponsoring the events. However, another advertisement on the Glenwood Springs Chamber Resort Association’s calendar lists candidate Amber Wissing for a March 10 “Meet the Candidates” event and none of the others.

Is the GSCRA hosting these events? If so, why were other candidates left out? It seems to me, given the significant public funding that the city of Glenwood Springs supports the chamber that neutrality and inclusion of all the candidates at such events would be prudent and ethical for the citizenry, If my perception of this is incorrect, I apologize, though maybe the GWCRA can clarify this for the public.

Vote for Don Gillespie as your Ward 5 representative.

Bruce Kime

Rifle

Willman’s the one

My name is Rorey Freeman and I am a sophomore at CU Boulder. I graduated from Glenwood Springs High School two years ago and spent all four years of my time there competing on the mock trial team.

In both my junior and senior years, Charlie Willman led my team to the state championship. Beyond being an excellent attorney and mock trial coach, I can say wholeheartedly that Charlie is one of the nicest men I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. I spent upwards of nine hours a week with him for months out of every year and was given the opportunity to witness what a hardworking and dedicated man he is.

I am assured he is the ideal candidate for City Council at-large, and, if elected, he will serve in the role with intelligence and grace. I cannot express my support for him as eloquently as I wish I could, but I would trust no one more to be in the position than Charlie. He knows what Glenwood Springs needs and how to get the job done the right way.

Rorey Freeman

Carbondale

Health-care sanity?

Looks like we are moving from Obama Cared to Trump Doesn’t Care (at all). Fifty-eight percent of all Americans want to see single-payer health care. Seventy-eight percent of Trump voters want to keep or tweak ACA. Pray for sanity as you call Sen. Gardner 202-224-2441 and Rep. Tipton 202-224-3553.

John Hoffmann

Carbondale

Wissing’s good works

I’m writing in reference to Amber Wissing, a close friend of mine. I’ve watched her over the years identify direct needs that the community or people within may have, and strategically collaborate and build partnerships to take decisive action for whatever the cause may be.

Amber currently works for Dr. Johnson’s dental office and consistently partners with local businesses for annual food drives. She’s headed up several different programs that donate toothbrushes to people who need them. When a local church had a family in need around the holidays, Amber is the one they think of to call. Amber then is making the necessary calls to put together clothes, food, and money — whatever’s necessary to help the family during their time of crisis.

A couple years ago, Amber had a vision to do something bigger. She heard of a direct need from the local police station regarding not having the necessary items for children who have been taken from their home unexpectedly due to a domestic dispute situation. There was a gap from local, popular organizations that have been instrumental in helping families in need within our community. Amber quickly started reaching out to friends and businesses and got a feel for what she could provide to fill this gap. Project PACK GarCo was born, a grassroots nonprofit organization that provides backpacks filled with necessary items — pajamas, toothbrushes, etc. The packs are filled specifically for boys and girls, ages ranging from newborn to 18 years old.

The community feedback and support was huge. Amber was able to, again, strategically connect with the right people — all of whom she had known from growing up in this community — and partner with local businesses like Glenwood Medical Associates, whom have been instrumental in helping this organization take off and grow. The stories of children that Project PACK has helped will literally bring tears to your eyes.

I’m proud and excited to watch Amber in all of her endeavors, knowing her heart and love for this community and all the wonderful things she’s sure to achieve. Be sure to vote — Amber Wissing City Council, Ward 5.

Katrina Epp

Glenwood Springs

Willman’s leadership

I urge my neighbors to vote for Charlie Willman for at-large city councillor. Charlie has been the head coach for mock trial for many years but has also served on the Downtown Development Authority board for about eight years.

I know from personal experience that he has the leadership skills and vision necessary to steer the city in a good direction. I also live downtown and am amazed at what he and his fellow Downtown Development Authority Board members have accomplished. Charlie has given of himself tirelessly and selflessly, and I know he will continue to make valuable contributions to the community if given the opportunity.

Charlie has an approachable, sensible manner about him and will listen to everyone who brings input to him. He is an easygoing, likeable guy, but also has the imagination and wherewithal to see projects through to completion.

Christina Chapin

Glenwood Springs

Plow Dandelion under

I’m a member of the old Carbondale Co-op (now Dandelion Market), a nice little place staffed by nice people who make shopping a nice experience. But I have bought little there over the years because the inventory has always been small and prices relatively high. For most of us, liberal or otherwise, food shopping is rarely a social statement. There are certainly some who think it should be one, but for most of us, it just isn’t.

Now the co-op is struggling to survive. Should it? From an idealistic point of view, certainly. Realistically? No.

Organizations exist to produce results. Results are a combination of intentions, competence, hard work and circumstances. After years of well-meaning effort, the co-op remains an idealistic enterprise unable to compete economically even within liberal Carbondale, a town that richly supports galleries, theater, environmental organizations, outdoor and athletic shops, parks, alternative health practitioners and exercise facilities out of all proportion to its size. The co-op board was recently surprised, even shocked, by unpaid bills, months after hiring Katrina Byers to straighten things out.

Local circumstances for a business like the co-op? Favorable. Good intentions? Sure. Ignorance about the balance sheet and accounts payable might have involved a certain amount of laziness, or at least a sloppy attitude, don’t you think? Overall results over the years? Obviously dismal.

It’s time to plow Dandelion under, the quicker the better. If Carbondale wants a food co-op, another will arise in due time. But this board and this director, though well-meaning enough, are simply unfit to survive in even Carbondale’s generous local economy. Please stop making idealistic pandering noises and pretending that you can somehow do better. You’ve more than had your chance, and you blew it. The most socially constructive thing you can do for Carbondale now is go away gracefully.

Ron Kokish

Carbondale

Kaup is proven

Glenwood Springs neighbors and friends, please join me in voting for Shelley for council-at-large.

Shelley has proven her qualifications for the job during her distinguished service on City Council from 2007 to 2011, and her active service on the Glenwood Springs Transportation board for the past several years. Her past position as the council rep on the Downtown Development Authority also makes her uniquely qualified to represent our community’s interests in the continuing development of the downtown core.

Yes, she offers the talents, energy, vision and experience that our community needs, especially during this time of exciting and challenging changes.

As an illustration, let me point to Shelley’s focus and goals regarding transportation issues. She will:

• Fight to minimize traffic impacts of the Grand Avenue bridge project.

• Push for a permanent Eighth Street connection.

• Pursue improved and increased funding for maintenance of our streets.

• Work to improve and promote bicycle and pedestrian connections and routes to encourage and promote alternative transport modes.

Gerry VanderBeek

Glenwood Springs


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