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Letters – Sept. 9, 2021

Locations: Letters Published

Climate action

I’ve been devoted to climate action for about 10 years. We have been saying that the destruction from climate change will be a catastrophe for our children and especially our grandchildren. To be honest, that didn’t mean anything to most people.

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But people now see, and many experience, the deaths and massive economic loss of hurricanes, heat waves and wildfires. What was a moral choice about two generations ago is now a matter of survival for us. Then throw in the COVID/Delta virus.

I’ve been saying that getting people to be concerned is just about impossible in our little paradise called Carbondale. Other than some smoke in the air, our biggest problems are a shortage of school teachers, bus drivers and dishwashers. And maybe a few things missing on the grocery shelves. And of course, the perennial shortfall, affordable housing. Nothing like a horde of climate refugees to bid up the housing and rental markets. It’s a great time for longtime locals to cash out. But where do you go?

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I think we are at a crossroad. Carbondale and the Valley have been “vibrantly” perking along for the last few years. Many thousands of new units are built, under construction or planned. The population of the Valley is rapidly increasing. And, consequently, the new greenhouse gas emissions that go along with growth are also increasing. But that is just the opposite of what our various climate action plans call for.

We are a very minor part of the world, but we ought to be doing our part. Instead, the short-term profits of development take precedent over all other values.

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If you think development improves quality of life, take a drive down to Denver. Stop in Vail, Frisco or Breckenridge. See how people are driving each other crazy and ruining their health.

Any chance we could have some discussion about this?

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Pat Hunter

Carbondale

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Stepping Stones

Stepping Stones is a community-based youth mentoring program that operates drop-in centers for youth ages 10 to 21. We are very excited to be in our newly remodeled spaces and invite you to attend our open house on Friday, Sept. 10, from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. It’s a great opportunity to tour our youth drop-in centers, meet our staff and learn more about the services we provide. We are located at 1150 Hwy 133 (corner of Garfield and 133) in Carbondale. Please come see us — all are welcome!

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Georgine (GG) Garbarini

Board President, Stepping Stones

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RINOs?

On Aug. 25, The Sopris Sun published an article by James Steindler regarding the Garfield County Taxpayer Accountability Project (GCTAP). GCTAP was formed by locals to monitor the spending of Garfield County (GarCo) Commissioners Mike Samson, John Martin and Tom Jankovsky, especially from the oil and gas mitigation fund which has a current balance of over $16 million.

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What GCTAP does not consider is the present Garfield County Attorney’s bloated bureaucracy and the empire the county attorney has constructed. Please remember, Republican Garfield County Commissioners Samson, Martin and Jankovsky found it necessary to pay out of Garfield County Treasury almost $2 Million in a fool’s errand to fight the new Polis O&G regulations. With another $1 millions or so to fight off the RMI limestone quarry north of Glenwood Springs. Both of these legal actions were outsourced to private attorneys by Commissioners Samson, Martin and Jankovsky, costing the GarCo Treasury over $3 million.

However, the Garfield County Attorney’s staff has six full-time lawyers with salaries of: one county attorney at $165K, four full-time assistant county attorneys III, which totals $465K, one Assistant County Attorney II at $79K, one senior paralegal at $90K and two junior paralegals at $115k for both. Plus the benefits are equal to 30% of their salaries. All totaled, it is approximately $825K in salaries and $250K in benefits for an annual cost of $1,100,000 to fund the Garfield County Attorney’s office. But, whenever there is a GarCo legal issue that requires real work on the part of the County Attorney’s office and its six lawyers, Samson, Martin and Jankovsky spend GarCo Treasury money for outside attorneys instead of relying upon their own in-house legal counsel. In other words, not one member of the six county attorneys has the skills set to go to trial. A disgraceful waste of GarCo Treasury monies by Mike Samson, John Martin and Tom Jankovsky for hiring sycophants as attorneys. 

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Commissioners Samson, Martin and Jankovsky are incompetent stewards of GarCo Treasury and those three RINOs should be recalled forthwith.

Carl L. McWilliams

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Glenwood Springs

Tags: #Carl L. McWilliams #letters #Pat Hunter #Steppings Stones
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