Occupy group fills Tipton office
About 20 people generally under the Occupy Grand Junction banner cheered as one of them, a woman who lives in a home that was foreclosed, scolded U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton, R-Colo., on Tuesday.
Penni Palthe, an unemployed sculptor and artist, delivered a two-page, single-spaced letter to Tipton’s Grand Junction office, 225 N. Fifth St., in the Alpine Bank building.
“Shame on you and shame on every other politician who has not pressed criminal charges on these corporations for destroying the lives of millions of Americans, who have stood by and benefited from the suffering and degradation of the people you swore to serve,” Palthe said, reading a passage in all-capital letters.
In addition to criticizing Tipton for “your interests in big oil and gas,” Palthe heaped scorn on House Resolution 3235, a measure sponsored by Tipton which would amend the Mineral Leasing Act to require that a portion of revenue from sales, bonuses, royalties and rentals from new mineral and geothermal leases go to states for use in public schools and colleges and universities instead of the federal treasury.
The bill amounted to “coercive tactics” forcing people to trade off their children’s health for education, Palthe said.
The Education and Energy Act, as Tipton dubbed it, is a good piece of legislation, according to his Washington, D.C., spokesman Josh Green.
The bill garnered two Republicans and a Democrat as cosponsors and meets three goals of increased education funding, creating new jobs and producing secure, reliable American energy, Green said, “kind of a win-win-win situation.”
Palthe, a Grand Junction resident since 2001, said she wasn’t politically active until recently, when she joined the occupy movement after losing her job and finding out that her mortgage was being foreclosed because she was no longer able to make payments.
Palthe said she remains in the house, though, and she continues to seek work while learning whether she has any options for dealing with her mortgage.
Before heading to Tipton’s office, members of the occupy movement gathered outside the Alpine Bank building, where two Tea Party activists watched but turned down the offer to join the Occupy group in visiting the congressman’s office.