Save Burkey Park!

I think it's a shame that the residents around Burkey Park have no say in the April 2 election which will decide the fate of the park! The city wants to sell this parcel of land even though it was designated to be a park when Lewis and Mildred Burkey donated it to the city over 50 years ago. Only City residents can vote in this election. Most home owners near Burkey Park, 29-3/4 Road and Patterson, are not within the city limits of Grand Junction and cannot vote in the April 2 election.

Many people chose to purchase their homes in this area because of the close proximity to a park. Although it's not developed, it is still used by the neighborhood to walk their dogs or meet friends to talk and get some exercise. Several years ago, the city provided bark for a walk path and neighbors volunteered to helped spread them, bringing their own rakes and shovels.

So, residents of Grand Junction, please be our voice and VOTE NO to sell Burkey Park!

PAULA BAKER

Grand Junction


City's explanation of ballot math doesn't add up

I was undecided regarding one or two of the referred measures on my ballot so took another close look at the details and now find I am still undecided but am also confused about the math as stated in measures 2A and 2B. Measure 2A calls for an additional “one quarter percent (.25%) which is an increase of one quarter cent on each ten dollar purchase.” Measure 2B uses the same language to describe a “one half percent (.50%)” increase or “one half cent on each ten dollar purchase.” But the math seems wrong.

Consider: 10 percent of 10 dollars is one dollar; one percent of ten dollars is ten cents. One quarter of one percent would therefore be one quarter of ten cents, or 2.5 cents. One half of one percent is 5 cents This is ten times as much as the ballot states. While this does not strike me as an unacceptable cost for the benefits achieved by the measures, it does seem like an obvious error, and one that should be addressed publicly as quickly as possible so we voters will know for sure what costs we are supporting or rejecting.

Measure 2C does not use the same illustration, but by extension it either costs us thirty-nine hundredths of a cent or 3.9 cents per ten dollar purchase. Personally, I would like to have some clarification before I either approve or reject any of the referred measures.

Thank you,

JIM ELLIS

Grand Junction


How do we navigate the post-Cold War world we inhabit?

Many alive today don't know we are in a post-Cold War Era. It was former CIA Director George H.W. Bush's fate to lead us at the beginning of this era that Reagan and Gorbachev engineered. Yeltsin and Clinton intervened to no avail.

Ultimately, Putin found a niche. That's where the world goes south. Not because of Putin, but because of lack of direction. Into this vacuum steps the CIA. They've failed on so many levels before for lack of guidance and now have a mission: Putin. They must set up a proxy to counter Putin. To do this they dupe presidential authority. The machine is set to feed the president filtered information.

The wild card appears: Trump. All are sent scurrying about, Hillary-dillary. It's a matter of blaming Trump for what Hillary was doing. Right now in history we are sorting it out, hopefully with the assistance of the special counsel.

So this still leaves the question: What do we do in this post-Cold War Era? There was no Berlin Air Lift. There was no assistance rebuilding relationships, commerce or buildings for this post-Cold War world. Technology has become the star of the show. Even children in third world countries have cell phones.

Ultimately it comes down to people being infused with a moral sense of interdependence. Every culture should proud. Every culture should be thankful the wars begat in the past do not crush people and cultures with armaments. The world will enter a higher level of awareness, propagated by climate change and religious amalgamation.

FRED STEWART

Grand Junction


More questions on the need for a rec center

I have been to the Fruita Rec Center and it is a nice facility and I am glad Fruita has one. However I am trying to see the need for one in Junction.

My wife and I belong to a private gym here and they have far more exercise equipment than Fruita has and with TVs you can watch while walking or riding a stationary bike. They have a theater that plays movies while you exercise. A large pool and walk in hot tub, racquet ball courts and yoga classes and so forth and we pay $20 per month per person.

I looked up Fruita's fees and even residents pay $30 per month per person if you pay by the year. So more cost for less facility. In addition to the private gyms there is the riverfront trail and tennis courts and skate board parks and baseball and soccer fields and football. Basketball courts.

So I have to ask myself why do we need a very expensive rec center in Junction? I also read in the Sentinel the huge amount of money being donated by the people who want this rec center and I have to ask myself, what's in it for them that they are willing to put up such a large sum of money?

RICHARD GERHARDT

Fruitvale


Community center's proposed location seems unwise

As an outsider observing the great debate, for and against, the community center for the city of Grand Junction: I live in Fruita and therefore have no vote in the matter. But I am curious as to why the city fathers made the decision to have the center built on the east side of town clear out to almost Clifton. Why not have it located closer to the central part of Grand Junction. Most people on the west side of town won't drive all the way out there to use it. And if you would have put it out by the mall, where everything else seems to be built then the people on the east side won't drive that far to use it either. I do question as to what the city council actually hears when they are trying to get opinions from the citizens as to what THEY want or need

Any council members want to answer that one?

JAMES OWEN

Fruita


Why do Muslim lives matter more than others?

All the news networks last week ran headline after headline regarding the New Zealand murder of Muslims. None thought the murder of more than 100 Christians by Muslims in Nigeria newsworthy enough to speak or print a single word.

At the same time ISIS mass graves are being uncovered in Syria and Iraq containing thousands killed by Muslims because they weren't Muslim.

Someone please tell me why Muslim lives are more important than the rest of humanity.

GARY MONTGOMERY

Grand Junction


Senate Bill 181 is David vs. Goliath

Last fall the state of Colorado voted overwhelmingly to have progressive policy makers in place that understand Colorado wants to balance oil and gas development with a future that protects our health and environment. Senate Bill 181 will allow local governments some control over oil and gas development. Additionally, it will require the appointment of a member that represents public health to the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC). Our health and safety will have a voice with regulatory oversight. SB181 is receiving scrutiny in broad daylight with remote testimony opportunities, including from Mesa County.

Consider that the petroleum industry outspent Colorado Rising 68 to 1 on the 2018 election, and currently the American Petroleum Institute is spending close to $500,000 on ads to oppose the health and safety priorities of SB181. This is a David and Goliath fight when it comes to campaign financing. Just think what the petroleum industry could buy instead of flooding the airwaves with false claims about SB181. Perhaps with all of their political funds, they should be made responsible for the uncapped and polluting oil and gas wells scattered across our state. Currently the taxpayer is on the hook for the clean-up.

TANYA TRAVIS

Grand Junction


Buffer zone residents should be allowed to vote on sales tax proposals

My family lives in the "buffer zone" (the area east of 20 Road and west of 21 Road) created by the cities of Grand Junction and Fruita. Although our ZIP code is designated as Fruita we do not get to vote in the elections of either city yet we pay the sales taxes charged by both. This is classic taxation without representation and I believe it should be remedied. My guess is that most of us in the buffer zone shop for a wider variety of things in Grand Junction than in Fruita. It also seems like Grand Junction is the source of most of the requested sales tax increases. We should be allowed to vote on these tax proposals.

PHIL CHILDERS

Fruita


Happy birthday to Virginia Elsberry Miller, 90

On April 13th, 2019, my mother, Virginia Elsberry Miller, will enter an elite group of Grand Junction residents—the ninety-year-old crowd. Well, it’s not actually a crowd because only a small percent of us make it to ninety, less than one percent of the U.S. population. Way to go, Mom!

I think that the key to my mom’s longevity is her attitude towards people; she genuinely likes them.

Kurt Vonnegut defined a “karass” as a group of people destined to go through life together, linked in a cosmically significant manner, even when the superficial link is not evident. My mom is in a large karass that expands with every person she meets. To her, everyone deserves a smile, a handshake, and a warm greeting. Granted there are many friendly people out there, but Mom takes it a step further. She is not only glad that she is alive, but she is glad that you are alive as well. Her enthusiasm for the human race conveys itself in every encounter.

Over the course of ninety years, Mom has welcomed hundreds of people into her karass, but she ain’t done yet. Every day there are new faces in the store, on the street, and around the neighborhood. People everywhere need to know they belong, that they are important and valued—and Virginia Miller is there to greet them. She exemplifies the words of Philo of Alexandria: “Be kind to all, for everyone you meet is waging a great battle.”

Congratulations, Mom, on making it to ninety. Now go out there and shake a few hands.

SHARON HART

Kingsburg, California


Dire predictions of increased regulation rarely materialize

Here are some of the things that SB-181 the Public Health & Safety oil and gas reform bill would do. That bill recently passed the state senate and is now being debated in the house.

SB-181 gives local government the ability to require additional bonding, which helps make sure that unscrupulous operators don’t leave taxpayers responsible, as has happened before.

It strengthens property rights and improves due process by reforming “force pooling” law to require a majority of owners, rather than a one, to force others into a “pool” for development.

SB-181 gives local government land-use oversight , which is equivalent to the same authorities they have over other industrial operations.

It requires that a state agency doing public business put the public interest first. The new law would clarify that the COGCC mission is not to foster oil and gas development but to oversee and regulate it.

Despite these sensible reforms, like all regulations before, industry predicts SB-181 will bring devastation upon it. And by proximity, upon all of us. Regulations are “placing an intolerable burden on the economy,” and whatever benefit they may bring, the consequences will be too severe, threaten “economic chaos,” bring the possibility "entire industries could fold.”

But as familiar as this refrain, the fear-mongering around SB-181 is legion: “And then before you know it, you have a ghost town, and tourism doesn’t happen here,” one official predicted.

In the end it often is that industry gets its way--until people say enough. Then we get seat-belts, in cars that still exist; we get lead paint off shelves, that are still painted brightly; and we still have refrigerators and shelves of hair products, without ozone-killing chemicals.

Airbags did not kill the automobile (the first quote above), nor did chaos reign when we phased out CFCs (the other quotes). Similarly oil and gas will not disappear because of SB-181.

Despite all the industry hand-wringing, it’s rather simple. If a company can’t ensure its operations don’t threaten health and safety; if it needs special rules and one-of-a-kind permissions to operate; if it acts under a sense of entitlement so pervasive that a company working with a single mineral owner can force frack all the nearby owners; and if an industry cannot even provide hard financial assurances that taxpayers won’t be left holding the bag; then we don’t need that company here. Which is why we need SB-181.

PETE KOLBENSCHLAG

Paonia

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