Printed letters, April 4, 2013
A letter in the March 31 edition of The Daily Sentinel described 1.8 percent of ATV riders as deserving of warnings or citations, other than registration violations. It should also be noted that the letter described this finding as the result of a pilot program at “hot spots” where, one might presume, at least some riders were aware there was law enforcement present.
The letter described this as “very few” riders committing trail violations. This is wrong. This is a lot of violations, particularly when considering both the usual nature of the violations and their cumulative effects.
The ATV violations I have noticed on public lands are riding off routes and removing barriers. In both cases the next rider might be innocent, but nonetheless increases the damage by inadvertently extending an illegal route. These marks can take decades to heal, and subsequent erosion and vegetation damage may cause essentially permanent change to the landscape.
By these statistics, consider a trail experiencing only 100 riders a year. What is the effect, over 10 years of up to 18 illegal excursions? Or over 20 years? Or 30?
For these reasons, land managers must be encouraged to limit ATV access and to consider long-term cumulative effects, or in a few decades little will be left to protect outside of areas where ATV use is already prohibited.
HOA members should respect neighbors by paying promptly
If homeowners-association members would just pay their dues or assessments, I suspect that this issue would not exist.
Lenders require that an applicant for a loan is current on his or her homeowner’s dues before they will grant the loan, so I have experienced. To the best of my knowledge, they never followed up with our association to determine if we stay current.
A lender should be required to follow up on a yearly basis. If the member is three months or more behind on his or her dues, the lender should require the member to pay them directly to the lender every month as part of his or her payment.
The dues should be placed in escrow and paid on a scheduled basis back to the HOA. In our HOA we need these dues to keep the insurance required by the lenders current.
Those who refuse to keep their dues current have created another form of welfare by living off of the members who do pay. We do place liens, but this does not solve the problem of how do we get the member to commit to paying current dues.
HOAs can always work out a payment program for back dues, but we need some way to get these non-paying members back on track, and I think the only way is to either have the lenders or the insurance companies also monitoring their own investments.
Threats and violence are not options, and they are not even effective. Everyone who has a vested interest in the property needs to get involved.
I realize that this only works for properties that are financed, but I suspect that a large number of those complaining are making monthly payments on their properties, and this would resolve most of the complaints about the issues involved.
Urge state legislators to reject commission bill
Last week brought a unique experience as we attended the bimonthly hearing for the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission. Being in attendance, we were able to listen to and see first-hand the many issues that came before the commission.
In addition to being an educational meeting for us, we were impressed with the level of knowledge and different perspectives each commission member brought to the table.
At the end of the day, we felt that the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission is accomplishing its mission in part by having a diversified commission. Each member of the commission brings his or her own unique knowledge and perspective to the table.
Upon returning to Craig, we learned about an effort to change the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission from a balanced and diverse commission to a less-balanced and less-knowledgeable commission.
HB 1269 in the state Legislature is a misguided bill.
In the future, if HB 1269 is passed, it would not allow anyone with employment in the gas and oil industry to be a commission member. We live in a world in which technology is changing rapidly. This is true in the oil and gas industry also.
By having members of the commission currently employed in the oil and gas industry, you have people with knowledge of the latest technology being used in the oil and gas industry. We need to keep the commission members with broad and unique knowledge in different areas of expertise.
Please contact your state House representative and senator and urge them to vote against HB 1269. Be prepared to ask Gov. Hickenlooper to veto HB 1269.
LLOYD and HAROLD ROLLINS