Email letters, March 12, 2012

Kroger should give back to our community

Losing City Market at 1st Street and Orchard Avenue is about much more than a store closing.  Employees knew people by name, carried out their groceries, visited with customers and customers visited with each other. If you didn’t find an item you wanted, no problem, just say the word and it was ordered for you and called when it arrived at the store. There was confidence that you were buying quality, confidence employees were honest and caring, confidence that owners, the Prinster family, were honest and caring and were members of our community.

I spent some time in Centennial this past year. A place I loved to visit was the Streets at Southglenn.  This is a new community setting where apartments and condos are situated above stores, restaurants, a theatre, ice-skating rink, department store, grocery store, etc., located where Southglenn Mall used to be located. They have reinvented a small city within a large city and with it a sense of community. You can view the streets at Southglenn on the web. Progressive cities like New York are also building these little communities.

Grand Junction has always been a unique city with our downtown shopping mall with gardens.  Perhaps our community leaders should research and visit other cities and require Kroger and other conglomerates to give back to our community in ways that benefit and enhance without losing our sense of community.

PAT GRAVES
Grand Junction

Congress has abdicated its role in rule making

The EPA, Region 8, Denver office announced Regional Administrator Jim Martin has signed the EPA’s proposed action to approve the Colorado Regional Haze state implementation plan (SIP). This action responds to the consent decree EPA signed with Wild Earth Guardians pertaining to regional haze in Colorado.
 
This is a continuing example of how the current administration is allowing federal departments such as the EPA and the Department of Interior to determine public policy and indeed public law by agreeing to consent decrees negotiated with various litigating organizations. These consent decrees completely ignore the judicial and legislative process which allow for reasonable public input in determining the right and correct public policy.
 
Public policy determined by federal agencies agreeing to consent decrees is wrong, it is unfair and should be illegal. This is a convenient way in which the current administration can bypass the sunlight of public scrutiny as afforded by the legislative and legal process. Although technically the public has opportunity for input, these decrees are basically negotiated behind closed doors with the first real public notice being the announcement of the already agreed to consent decree.
 
Unfortunately, Congress has abdicated its responsibility to control the rule making and indeed the law making of the ever expanding role and rule of the federal bureaucracy. If not controlled and reduced the federal bureaucracy will be come, if not already, more powerful than and will make more law than the legislative branch. This is not the checks and balances our founders envisioned when setting up the three branches of the federal government, i.e.; executive, legislative and judicial and not what has become the fourth branch that of the federal bureaucracy.
 
KEN HENRY
Fruita

Sheriff’s Department do great work

Does anyone ever acknowledge the Sheriff’s Department for the great work they are doing?
 
On March 1, a tragedy occurred in our quiet park of Pioneer Village. Upon speedy arrival after being notified, a crew of professional officers and ambulance staff arrived. The crime scene was secured and the police officers began to scour the community for information.
 
Our residents were treated with respect and the utmost dignity was observed during the entire time the investigation was being carried out.
 
Within two days the suspects were arrested and are in jail awaiting sentencing.
 
What a credit to our community. Ever wonder how your tax dollars are being spent? Thank our wonderful, professional Sheriff’s Department.
 
VIRGINIA MCGRIFFIN
Grand Junction

Problem with bus facility was the location

Again we have another letter to the editor criticizing the decision to not build a new Greyhound Bus terminal in conjunction with the Grand Valley Regional Transportation Authority (GVRTA). The inference is that those objecting to this joint facility had disregard for the public interest. This is a false conclusion.

The major objection to the proposed plan was not opposing the joint venture. The majority of the neighboring property owners and most of the 1,000 petitioners objected to the choice of location which would have put the Greyhound Bus terminal adjacent to and for all practical purposes in the backyard of a major and still-developing residential area and have a deleterious affect on the commercial owners in the area. In fact at the local property owner’s meeting where many expressed their opinions and objections, most attending agreed the concept was a good one, just not at the proposed 24 ½ Road location. Unfortunately the GVRTA has now invested about $1 million to this site and the hope of building a joint facility at a better location now seems remote. This is regrettable.

I would hope we can put an end to the ill-informed opinions that this failure to accomplish a good result somehow was solely the fault of the neighbors, both residential and commercial, in the area. The fault lies elsewhere and I believe a better location would have sailed through approval with little fanfare or objection.

L.W. HUNLEY
Grand Junction

No attack on Iran before presidential election

Obama is terrified that Israel will attack Iran before the election. If a joint attack happens or if Israel strikes alone, the price of oil will spike to at least $150 a barrel and maybe more. You can depend on Obama to try anything to avoid an attack of any kind. His attempt to systematically dismantle the oil industry during his first three years of office has put him in an indefensible position. Stopping the Canadian pipeline was also an indication that he will do anything to get re-elected.  

While world security may be at stake, so is Obama’s airplanes and the numerous parties at the White house at taxpayer’s expense. So unless Israel strikes first, you can forget about a war with Iran until after the election. Sadly Iran knows he will not do anything till then.
 
The upward pressure, however, will continue on gasoline prices as Middle East’s conflicts increase; war or no war. If they are significant, Obama’s energy policies may still cost him the election.

Syria is another example of do-nothing leadership. Plan for America to stand by and watch the slaughter of opposition forces. The Syrian leaders are supplied by money and weapons by Russia, China, and Iran.
 
In the future, America will pay the price for depending on other countries for a large part of our oil supply instead of developing our abundance of natural resources. It is just a matter of time.
 
WILLIAM F. MCKNIGHT
Grand Junction

Energy doesn’t bring tourism

When Larry Head from Hotchkiss wrote concerning the North Fork economy, his comments were headlined, “Energy, not agriculture fuels North Fork economy.” He stated, “Yes, agriculture is the historical provider for our rural way of life. Take the energy industry away and see what happens. Grape growers are not going to pay the way.”

Well, I come from an ag county in another state, with no gas and oil industry, where grape growers do pave the way. Over 200 wineries, as well as the unspoiled rural beauty of the area, bring not only great business, but abundant tourism. Organic businesses flourish due to no industrial pollution. Cheese making, orchards, dairy and olive oil businesses thrive and every town in the county has at least one farmer’s market. Schools, a college, art, music and theater businesses, a hospital, library, museum, and other retail establishments all flourish.

I was actively involved on several boards there, including the Chamber of Commerce, and ran a successful bed and breakfast. Why was it busy? Because people came from all over the country to visit the area. Tourism and the diverse business base are what keep that county healthy and thriving, not the energy industry.

Residents there receive their electrical power from geysers in the local mountains and water for farming comes from a river that flows through two counties. The residents do not want the energy industry to take over the county because they know it would change the area forever.

Head has forgotten what Exxon did to this and the surrounding area in the 1980s. They pulled out overnight with no warning, leaving 2,000 workers out of a job and nowhere to find one. This area then suffered a recession for over 10 years.

No place should be dependent on one industry alone for the health of the local economy. We have seen how badly that can turn out and should have learned something from it.

PEGGY RAWLINS
Grand Junction

Vote ‘Yes’ on Issue A for Fruita

Vote “Yes” on Fruita. Vote “Yes” on Issue A. Without increasing existing tax rates or adding new taxes of any kind, the residents of Fruita will be asked at the April 3 regular municipal election, in addition to choosing three City Council members and a mayor, to decide if the City of Fruita can retain revenue over the limits set by TABOR and use those funds for capital projects and the maintenance of those projects.

The question before the voters will be consistent with the previous four revenue retention measures approved by Fruita voters in ‘93, ‘95, ‘00 and ‘06. If approved, Referred Issue A would allow the city to collect and retain revenues over the limits set by TABOR for a six-year period through 2018. Those collected revenues would be restricted, and could only be used on capital projects and their maintenance.

Approval of this measure will allow the city to continue to be aggressive with applications for grant funds similar to the 2006-2012 experience where for every dollar of TABOR surplus the city was allowed to keep, an additional $4.77 in grant money was generated. That is, with the $3.2 million the city was allowed to keep, it was able to leverage over $15.6 million in grants. Overall, an additional $18.6 million was allowed to be invested in capital projects due to the approval of the 2006 revenue
retention measure.

These funds were used develop parks and trails; improve the sewer and drainage systems; purchase open space and land for new construction; and improve city streets.

If Referred Issue A is approved, Fruita’s Capital Improvement Plan will provide funding for road and traffic improvements, building improvements, drainage and irrigation improvements, public safety needs, utility improvements, equipment purchases, parks and open space improvements and the maintenance required for these improvements. A detailed list of these projects can be found in the city’s Annual Budget and online at http://www.Fruita.org.

Fruita residents have benefited greatly from approving the last four revenue retention measures, and they will continue to benefit if they vote “Yes” on Issue A. Please support this measure. Should you have questions, call me (858.9629).

JOHN R. RODWICK
Fruita’s Revenue Retention Committee
Fruita



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