Printed Letters: September 19, 2017

For prosperity’s sake, vote yes on 3A and 3B

Our schools are in dire need of assistance. In Mesa County, we are way behind other counties in Colorado in spending per student. Furthermore, Colorado is behind most other states, and the United States is behind most other developed countries in the same benchmark.

We are doing a shameful disservice to our youth by spending only a relative pittance on their education, evidenced by our schools that are literally falling apart.

I’m frustrated when I read flippant arguments by Phyllis Hunsinger such as “taxing ourselves into prosperity.” Of course we tax ourselves so that we can be prosperous! Our military protects us, our law enforcement officers keep law and order, and our schools and teachers help educate our youth, all so that we may be prosperous. For prosperity’s sake, we cannot afford to let our schools fall into further disrepair.

No one can look me in the eye and say they are for education and against measures 3A and 3B. Our kids need this one!

MARK GRIFFIN
Grand Junction

Responsible energy will help protect sporting heritage

Like many people across the West this time of year, I’m getting ready for the start of hunting season. I have my favorite spots and places I’m hoping I get a chance to check out. But one area I no longer hunt is what used to be called Colorado’s mule-deer factory, which was known for being so prolific. These days, the White River herd in northwest Colorado numbers an estimated 30,550, a dramatic drop from more than 100,000 in the early 1980s.

A number of factors could be at play, but there’s no denying oil and gas drilling and the accompanying infrastructure — new roads, pipelines, tanks and compressors — have had a negative impact. The Bureau of Land Management projects that another 15,000 wells could be drilled in the area in the next 20 years. A recent report by Sportsmen for Responsible Energy Development portrays that part of Colorado as a cautionary tale. With the Trump administration pushing “energy dominance” on public lands, it’s up to sportsmen to speak out for balanced development.

We need to learn from the past and take the time and the effort our public lands, fish and wildlife and sporting heritage deserve. Colorado sportsmen, more than most, know the value of a better balance of energy development in building back our magnificent mule deer herd resources.

KENT INGRAM
President, 
Colorado Wildlife Federation
Littleton

City should not partner on bungled proposition

I opened Saturday’s paper to read about one more questionable proposition that our beloved city “representatives” are considering.

Why is the city partnering with anyone to improve the underperforming Two Rivers Convention Center? We gave over management to Pinnacle Venue Services because they were absolutely, positively sure it could be a moneymaker. We couldn’t afford to be involved anymore so why are we getting involved again?

The Reimer brothers will be given the land to build their hotel on — meaning we lose a parking lot — oh but wait! We will have another parking lot — after we tear down the building the city paid $750,000 for (even though it only appraised for $500,000). Oh but wait! Then we are going to buy the old Wells Fargo drive-through for parking. Guess who now owns that property? Right — the Reimer brothers. And I wonder how much we are going to pay them for it? I’ve no doubt they’ll make a good profit.

The city magically found $3 million to dump into an already losing venue that someone else manages? That $3 million could pay for 68 police officers for one year — or 10 officers for six years. I think that would be a way better use of the money than continually dumping it into an empty hole.

I understand that the Reimer brothers have a lot invested in the town but if they truly believe that this deal’s a moneymaker then they can invest their own money and shouldn’t need taxpayer money. I quote Kevin Reimer, “We think we found our niche, and we want to keep operating in our niche.” I’d like to be in that niche too where people keep throwing money at me for losing propositions.

It really makes one wonder what backdoor deals go on in this town — first the North Avenue name change that no one got to vote on, now this. I really hope the voters remember these fiascoes next time the elections for city council come around.

Wake up people! You are getting shafted without even getting a kiss!

PATTY SMITH
Grand Junction


COMMENTS

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Ms. Patty Smith appears to look at “public investment” the same as I do.  And, it always comes down to one thing, to whom the benefits accrue, and who pays the tab.  And when it involves taxpayer dollars, and looking at what public officials do with public funds, one must look to their background.  Too many of them, when they get into office, cannot transition over to the realization that their obligation is now to the public and, as a consequence of that, end up serving their old master.  If they were in a particular of occupation, they will keep serving those interests, and for one specific reason.  For far too many, it being all they know, that is the only place they know where to look and therefore where all answers and solutions have to come from.

Those of us will attend meetings of public bodies and it never ceases to amaze us as to how many of them reflect that type of thinking.  If they were in “banking” they will continue to promote the interests of bankers.  If they were in agriculture, they will continue to promote agriculture.  If they were in business, they will continue to promote business interests.

Now, some of us do not want an individual appointed to a position for which he/she is not qualified.  But, at the same time, we do not want those individuals (consciously or not) to keep serving their old master or the interests of the industry or occupation they came from, or look for answers in only those areas, something which all too many actually do.

However, the ultimate responsibility is the voters and, if they are “hoodwinked” into believing what those seeking public office, usually without thinking about things, they deserve exactly what they get and have no reason to complain afterwards.

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