E-mail letters, July 6, 2011

Public streets shouldn’t be
closed to fireworks viewers

As I write this letter, I can hear the snaps, bangs and pops from the Fourth of July fireworks in the background.

Earlier, my husband and I drove to Spyglass Ridge to watch the spectacle of fireworks all over the valley from
the front seat of our car. We parked on a public road and quietly anticipated the show, with views over an empty lot in front of us. Immediately, a security person drove up and came to our window. He proceeded to tell us that we must leave because we did not own property there.

Hmmm. We were parked on a public street that was not marked private, nor was the community “gated” to keep out unwanted guests.

I pay my taxes to live in Grand Junction and I believe that includes the streets in Spyglass Ridge. We were not trespassing on private property, not loud, drinking or causing any concern to the one and only homeowner to our left.

Gate your community if for one day a year you cannot stand to have your fellow Americans come and enjoy the beauty of the Fourth of July fireworks.

What is this country coming too?  Land of the free? Yeah, sure.
Bonnie Stefanick
Grand Junction

Are there new threats
to city’s water supply?

Thanks to The Daily Sentinel for the May 27 article on reported evidence of 992 spills “of wastewater, oil, and other substances” in the Piceance Basin from 2001 through 2010, some 48 in Mesa County. The cases of “contaminated groundwater or surface water” worry me.

I remember the wonderful summer of 2006, when thousands of us signed a petition that led to Grand Junction’s “Watershed Protection Ordinance, No. 3961”—100 pages of standards and requirement for oil and gas activities. Our fears for the effects of spills or other contaminations of our water supply were laid to rest, five years ago.

Then comes 2010 and a foreign company, FRAM proposes “an exploratory action” to the BLM: permission to develop 492 wells, including “gas gathering pipelines, water lines, access roads and compressor sites”—a Whitewater Unit Master Development Plan. But the BLM had yet to run its customary investigations. It was just paper, “exploratory” paper. Until the BLM finished its reviews, no drilling, or spilling, would
occur, we thought.

We forgot about all the other jurisdictions and agencies and ownership entities, including private land owners.

The City of Grand Junction designates Kannah Creek as one of our primary watersheds. What’s happening? How and where is our water supply being protected now, in 2011? We need more good, clear local investigative
reporting. Is our ordinance still in good standing? Who is following through on it? What should we think now about our water supply?
Penney Hills
Grand Junction

St. Mary’s staff provided
excellent care after accident

Friday, May 13, began as a beautiful sunny day with friends and loved ones riding our mountain bikes on the White Rim Trail in Canyonlands National Park. A fluke crash on arguably the widest and flattest part of the whole road changed my life.
I would like to thank the wonderful staff at St. Mary’s Hospital for their professionalism, kindness, expert care, and sense of urgency. I was treated with respect, empathy, calmness, cool and cheerful support over my six-day stay in the hospital.
The Care Flight staff, plus everyone in the ER, Radiology, OR, ICU, and the orthopedic ward provided the best care I could have ever imagined. Every doctor, nurse, aide, therapist, and support staff member treated me as if I were the only patient in the building.
I wish I could thank everyone individually, but there were so many of them whose faces I didn’t even see who were there doing what they do so well. Please accept this letter to all of you as the best way I can show my
gratitude for your wonderful care and giving me a good start on my way to recovery.
Joseph Sprick
Glenwood Springs

Coloradans understood TABOR
when they passed amendment

Once in a while someone will open a window on their true agenda, as did Arn McConnell when he personally attacked Americans for Prosperity and Kelly Sloan for their support of TABOR.

Although his message is muddled, McConnell makes a word-twisting argument that equates prosperity with taxation. His assumptions rest on the claim that the interests of constituents is best served when government has unlimited access to your bank account. The implication is that Colorado residents can’t be trusted to make rational economic decisions.

What McConnell seems to really want is more money — more money for a state-run education monopoly that can’t effectively educate our kids; more money for a legal system that preys on citizens trapped in the statutory/regulatory maze, and more money for social-engineering schemes. In other words, more money
for the constituencies listed in his letter.

Colorado taxpayers aren’t stupid. When they passed TABOR, they were well aware that spending discipline would limit the growth of government. To this day, TABOR remains overwhelmingly popular among the people of Colorado and represents an effective constraint on state power.

I applaud our local elected officials who stand with taxpayers by affirming their support of TABOR.
Martin Chazen
Grand Junction

Don’t blame Republicans
for the ‘Great Recession’

Democrats blame Republicans for the current “Great Recession.” The economy took a turn for the worse toward the end of 2007. Democrats took control of both the House and Senate in November 2006. So, who was in charge of the government when the economy turned upside down?

That’s right. Democrats were. Sure a Republican was in the White House, but without a supportive Congress the president can pass nothing, and President George W. Bush did not have a supportive Congress. It was the policies of a Democrat-controlled Congress (government), not the Republican president, which brought our economy down.

Bush did not raise taxes on the businesses that create jobs and invest capital. Bush did not pass the laws that protect flower-loving flies and halt development. It was President Bill Clinton and his Democratically controlled Congress in the 1990s, not Bush or Republicans in the 2000’s, that forced Fannie Mae, Freddy Mac, and dozens of other lenders to give home loans to poor people who could not afford to pay them in the name of being fair.

Republicans are capitalists. Republicans love money. Bush loves money. Bush is a Republican. Why would people who love money do things that would threaten or destroy the vehicle by which they make more of it? Logic tells us that this down economy could not have been caused by money-loving Republicans, and instead had to have been caused by private-business-hating, big-government-loving Democrats.
Jeremiah Habecker
Grand Junction


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