Rancher asks ‘no’ vote on wolf reintroduction

A “NO” vote on Proposition 114 – Introduction of Wolves to Colorado — is a vote for responsible wildlife management in our state.

From my perspective as a livestock producer, introducing wolves would be horrible for the Western Slope of Colorado. Predation, as well as other losses from stress on the cattle, would not be good.

As a Coloradoan, I have concerns from a couple other viewpoints.

1. Our state budget is $3.3 billion in the hole from the effects of COVID-19. Where would the $5-$8 million come from to pay for introduction costs? There would also be other ongoing management costs that would be incurred by the state. Colorado Parks and Wildlife does not operate on tax dollars and does not have the money to pay for this. I believe that Colorado has more pressing issues like highway infrastructure and funding of education, both K-12 and post-secondary.

2. The wolves that are migrating here and having pups would not play well in the sandbox with the wolves that would be captured and then released in western Colorado. As a caretaker of animals, it doesn’t make sense to me to do that to the wolves. We have a management plan for the migrating wolves, to mitigate impacts on them and the human population of Colorado. Let’s let nature take its course and let migration, not forced introduction, bring wolves to Colorado.

3. The biologists at CPW have recommended no introduction of wolves four times in the past, most recently in 2016. Proposition 114 has strong emotions on both sides of the argument. Let’s let the professional wildlife managers make the best decision for the animals, based on facts and science. Our large population in Colorado does not lend itself to wolf introduction.

Please join me in voting no on Proposition 114 – Introduction of wolves into Western Colorado.

JANIE VAN WINKLE

Mesa County rancher and president of Colorado Cattlemen’s Association

A developer who opposes development? Not likely

Ballots are in our mailboxes and our hearts are heavy with the apprehension of outcomes — both ways. Pen in hand we darken the circle of our minds on paper. Will it all be over soon?

We have a man running for County Commissioner District 1 in Cody Davis who said in the Sentinel: “Do we want to see the type of growth that Denver’s gone through in the last several years? I don’t think there’s a person here that wants to say, ‘I want to see that type of growth’...” Said by a man who makes his livelihood doing just that, promoting growth by plowing under open, unfettered land. Replacing it with buildings thirsty for people, pollution, and water.

Belief in a man that makes his living by removing land from nature and subjugating it to manmade whims? Not sure how I can believe he will protect us from the “Denver landscape” he claims to abhor. His company is based on plans that would convert a longtime nursery to concrete and asphalt.

I don’t condemn a man for making a living. All I ask is that person be upfront about how that livelihood affects their beliefs and values. I question just how often he would recuse himself from county business that would divert funds to his pockets by his vote. All one must view is the dollars put up by Mr. Davis for his campaign. Just how does he lead the pack in campaign spending among county commissioners?

To me, there is only one candidate running for District 1 county commissioner who puts her money where her mouth is —someone who will better preserve our western personality — Kathryn Bedell.

LARRY SCHEID

Grand Junction

Boebert threatens public lands and our West Slope way of life

I was stunned and dismayed to read that congressional candidate Lauren Boebert opposes long-sought protections for our hunting, grazing and recreational areas on the Western Slope. In fact, Boebert recently called the CORE Act a “ land grab by Denver’s Liberals.”

Does Boebert even know what she is talking about? Does she understand that the CORE Act was written by local stakeholders and enjoys broad bipartisan support throughout the 3rd Congressional District? I’m guessing the answer to both of those questions is “no.”

I am a hunter and outdoor recreationalist who cherishes the outdoors that makes our state and region so special. And I am proud to live on the Western Slope, in the Roaring Fork Valley, where local communities have worked together for more than a decade to form a diverse coalition of ranchers, hunters, mountain bikers and other concerned local citizens to protect the Thompson Divide – a crucial nearby public lands watershed and recreation area that would be protected by the CORE Act.

One of the coalition members was a hunting guide and war veteran who “never voted for Democrats.” A few years back, he wrote an op-ed that slammed Scott Tipton for ignoring local interests and “claiming to represent Western Slope ranchers and sportsmen — (while) peddling the interests of Texas oil speculators on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives.” It sure appears that our district would go from bad to worse if Boebert somehow gets to D.C.

Ms. Boebert may have a loud voice, but she doesn’t represent our values. Her lack of understanding of basic policy issues presents a real threat to our public lands. By opposing locally driven efforts to protect our hunting, grazing, and recreational areas, she also threatens our outdoor and agricultural heritage, along with our Western Slope Way of life.

Please vote for Diane Mitsch Bush.

DAVE MUNK

Carbondale

Support 7A and the Colorado River District’s important work

Often referred to as the hardest working river in America, the Colorado River originates on Colorado’s West Slope and provides water to western Colorado families, businesses and farms and ranches. The Colorado River and its tributaries also offer endless environmental and recreational benefits enjoyed by locals and visitors alike. The Colorado River is the economic driver for western Colorado, and it is the foundation of the high quality of life we enjoy.

Though not widely known, the Colorado River District (CRD) provides an incredibly important service to western Colorado. Put simply, the CRD works to protect the waters of the Colorado River for the benefit of Colorado’s Western Slope. For over 80 years, the CRD has delivered wide-ranging benefits to water interests in the 15 Western Slope counties it serves, including Mesa County.

I encourage you to join me in voting yes on 7A this election season to protect the future of our Western Slope water. Because of Colorado’s tax laws, it has been severely difficult for the CRD to raise money to protect this increasingly precious water. This nominal mill increase will cost the average West Slope homeowner $7.03, which will raise nearly $5 million for the CRD.

This increase in capital will help improve agricultural efficiencies, update infrastructure, maintain healthy rivers, protect water quality, and ensure a reliable and efficient water system for all users.

Trout Unlimited and its local chapters across western Colorado strongly support Measure 7A. Measure 7A will allow us to build on our past successes with the River District and provide even greater benefits to western Colorado rivers in the future. Join me and other passionate river users in voting yes on 7A.

ELLIE M. PHIPPS

President

Trout Unlimited Chapter 319

Grand Valley Anglers

Grand Junction

Story on Glacier Ice Arena needs some clarification

On Friday Oct. 2, The Daily Sentinel ran a blurb asking “What’s the status of the Glacier Ice Arena?” an article for the upcoming paper on Sunday, Oct. 4. We were surprised to see that The Daily Sentinel was running an article concerning Glacier, as this was the first time we heard about it. In the article the writer states that “Koos could not be reached for comment.”

Actually, my husband Alan and I were never contacted to give comment, either by phone, email or any other source. It is also written in the article, “The rink has faced multiple shutdowns because of equipment difficulties.” The truth is, the rink has only closed once due to equipment difficulties, not multiple times. That was in June of 2010 due to a construction error made by a subcontractor hired to install our ice making system. The ice-making equipment was completely repaired in 2013 and our ice-making system has been running perfectly ever since with continual routine maintenance as suggested by a professional ice rink equipment professional.

The writer also states that Glacier costs have soared and summers were seeing fewer customers. Yes, costs do go up such as utilities and taxes, but to say they have soared is not accurate. In the beginning Glacier was a year-round recreational facility, however, in the summer months we compete with outdoor activities that are available to us here in western Colorado. To close in the summer as an industry is normal as most of the 14 ice rinks (Glacier being the only ice rink on Western Slope not owned by a municipality) close during the summer. Glacier has always seen at least a 65% drop in attendance during the summer, so it certainly is not a matter of recently “seeing fewer customers” during those months.

Every year, Glacier Ice Arena has increased its worth and is currently, and has been for a few years, a break-even business. For a privately owned rink, it is important to be said that it does not need to be subsidized year after year, so to speculate or assume otherwise is misguided information.

We appreciate all of the hockey and figure-skating user groups and those who see what a valuable asset this is to our community and the positivity it can bring to our youth!

ROBBIE AND ALAN KOOS

Glacier Ice Arena, LLC

Recommended for you