Printed letters, June 26, 2011

Many members of the Grand Valley Citizens Alliance, Battlement Concerned Citizens and the Rifle-Silt-Peach Valley-New Castle groups are very disappointed that Garfield County management has fired its Oil and Gas Liaison, Judy Jordan.

Although we did not always agree with Jordan on policy, we found her to be fair, professional and knowledgeable.

She helped Garfield County citizens with private property rights and health issues when oil-and-gas drilling and fracking operations were at their doorstep. She tracked landowner complaints, helped industry and citizens alike navigate policies, and she pushed for commonsense ways to responsibly develop local resources.

Of the many oil-and-gas liaisons the county has hired (the first left to work for the industry) Jordan was by far the best. She investigated instances of contamination, and she recognized industrial activity inherently impacting communities and people.

Jordan, however, really differentiated herself from the pack by identifying ways we could drill more safely.

We fear that the county released Jordan because of industry pressure. Her leadership, honesty and encouragement of moving beyond the unregulated status quo likely made powerful enemies.

Throughout her tenure, we have read and listened to industry representatives claim Jordan had “perceived partiality,” as stated in a January, 2010, letter to the county commissioners. No county employee should have to endure this pressure.

Local advances to protect public health and ensure equality between citizens and industry have taken steps backward in Garfield County since the election last November.

With the county’s Health Impact Assessment left in draft form and now, Judy Jordan losing her job, the score appears to be the oil-and-gas industry: 2; Garfield County citizens: 0.

LESLIE ROBINSON, chair

Grand Valley Citizens Alliance

and other concerned citizens Garfield County

Cooperation among agencies is a blessing

In 1975, Grand Junction Police Department investigators were inundated with crimes against persons.

The first was Denise Lynn Oliverson, abducted by Ted Bundy, as we later learned.

Then several other death investigations occurred before the Botham/Miracle homicides became a linked case among the Grand Junction Police Department, Mesa County Sheriff’s Office and the Colorado Bureau of Investigation.

That case was successfully solved and the person put in prison following two trials, handled by the Mesa County District Attorney’s office.

Then, one month later came the homicides of Linda Benson and her daughter Kelly. Thirty-five years later, technology brought that homicide to a solution.

A late-fall homicide of a college co-ed brought all of us back together for an as-yet-unsolved crime that is being worked on as of this writing.

I want to personally thank the CBI, Grand Junction Police Department, Mesa County Sheriff’s Office and the Mesa County District Attorney’s Office for jobs well done. These agencies all excel in doing the best they can for the citizens of Mesa County.

Keep the cold-case unit going as a team effort. Compliments are due to Commander Greg Assenmacher, Detective Sean Cocker and Special Investigator Larry Bullard and others who work so well together. A special thanks to the CBI’s DNA specialists.

Thanks also to the television and print media of Colorado for information released in 1975 and the present times.

DOUG RUSHING

Grand Junction


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