Letters to the Editor

Piper: Breckenridge voters to decide what’s ‘family friendly’

September 16, 2014 — 

It seems that Eric Buck is alarmed in a recent letter that the issue of a cannabis shop on Main Street will be put to the voting public rather than the Breckenridge Town Council decide it. To be worried that all “stakeholders”, i.e. visitors, part-time homeowners, business owners will not be allowed to decide is beside the point here. The voters will decide the issue. They are the full-time residents here. If anyone of our other guest would like to be a voter here then they can move here and register to vote. These, after all, are the principal stakeholders in any democracy. The number of voters in Breckenridge has steadily risen as growth has come to town. These are the folks who put everything they have into the community, their jobs, their children, and their lives. They should be allowed to choose.

Or perhaps at the heart of Mr. Buck’s concern is more a preference. The drug of choice on Main Street is alcohol. I don’t see this image as very family-friendly as he contends. If we want to truly embrace family culture then let’s clean our image beginning with the public drinking, drunk driving, urinating and the rest that we all have seen. Now a little charming pot shop on Main Street is a small problem in town.

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Geise: Raising the minimum wage increases prices and costs jobs

September 15, 2014 — 

The economic issue involving raising the minimum wage is as revealing as any of the level of ignorance of the American people and particularly our leadership on this subject.

Increasing the cost of labor to the employer forces the business owner to either pass that cost of doing business onto the consumer in the form of higher prices or eventually go out of business. Both options result in fewer jobs.

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Buck: Breckenridge Town Council should take a stand on marijuana issue

September 11, 2014 — 

How disappointing it was to see the Breckenridge Town Council duck its responsibility to take a leadership position on the issue of marijuana on Main Street. Instead of taking a stand in the best interest of Breckenridge, council has decided (kind of) to defer to the whim of the voting public. Unfortunately, the voting public is but a small subset of the stakeholders in the future of Breckenridge. The vast majority of property holders in Breckenridge are not registered to vote in town. A large percentage, if not a majority, of businesses are not owned by people who live within the city limits. The town’s workforce comes from many communities throughout Summit and Park counties. And, of course, our millions of visitors have no suffrage in Breckenridge. Yet, it is our property owners, businesses, workers and visitors who will incur the longer term consequences if Breckenridge loses its image as a family-friendly resort. When that happens, many of the transient voters to whom council has deferred this decision will be long gone.

I am sympathetic to the issue of fairness for existing businesses both in town and on Airport Road. Clearly the in-town shop has an advantage doing almost as much business as the other four licensees combined. But the answer isn’t tainting our downtown core with more shops but rather eliminating them from downtown all together. Nothing positive comes from them being on Main Street, while the nearly 1,000 signatures on the online petition are a clear demonstration that a large population views it as a negative. For every signature on the petition there are probably tens of thousands of potential visitors around the country with similar views.

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Koenig: Live music at Dillon Amphitheater hits the right note

September 11, 2014 — 

I would like to thank the Dillon Business Association, the town of Dillon and Matt Miano with the town of Dillon for a great concert series at the Dillon Amphitheatre. The highlights, including Dark Star Orchestra on the Fourth of July weekend the Machine playing the music of Pink Floyd on Sept. 6, were some of the best events I have attended in Summit County. They seemed to be attended by many of the working class of Summit County that had worked so hard through the summer to take care of all the guests that come up to visit. What fine rewards, free concerts of music from such a fine bands playing what I would say are some of more favorable styles of music in the county. While not everyone in Summit County is a “Deadhead” or Pink Floyd fan, I would bet that the majority of the people of the county would say they enjoy the music of both the Grateful Dead and Pink Floyd.

Again, thank you, Dillon, for utilizing such a fine resource as the Dillon Amphitheatre to give both the residents and visitors of Summit County a chance to watch a beautiful sunset on the mountains we all love while listening to great live music being performed.

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Faust: Hysteria over marijuana on Breckenridge’s Main Street ignores key facts

September 11, 2014 — 

The Breckenridge Town Council is getting set to vote on whether to continue to allow retail marijuana stores to operate on Main Street. There has been a lot of passion, along with a great deal of obfuscation on the issue. First, to establish a few facts.

Fact: At least one marijuana store has been operating on Main Street for five years. If you are not aware of this, then I think it shows how little impact it has had.

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Shand: Current Breckenridge sign code provides equal playing field

September 9, 2014 — 

Current Breckenridge sign code provides equal playing field

Re: recent Summit Daily News article, “Town of Breckenridge is trying to avoid ‘sandwich board wars:’”

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Snipes: What does Breckenridge want to be known for?

September 3, 2014 — 

Having followed the discussions about allowing retail marijuana stores on Breckenridge’s Main Street, I pose this question: Who do you want to be, Breck? What image do you want to present to the world — a charming, family-oriented mountain town that caters to healthy outdoor activities or one more place with easy access to marijuana?

Breck has worked hard to maintain the feel of the original mountain town, and allowing retail marijuana on Main could well be a step toward eroding all your prior efforts. For example: There is a retail marijuana outlet in Frisco between Walmart and Safeway. Recently my wife sat in our car in that area waiting for me and observed several patrons of the pot store who made her uncomfortable as they were not kempt and were loitering in the area. OK, now multiply this by five or so and drop it onto Main Street, Breck. Yes, I know, not all users are the same, but how many of the type I described will it take to undercut the family atmosphere of Main Street.

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Gordman: Will marijuana on Main Street solve Breckenridge’s parking problem?

September 3, 2014 — 

I believe the Breckenridge Town Council has finally found a solution to the serious parking problem that has plagued the town for years. The council is in the process of developing an ordinance that will permit the development of pot shops on Main Street. While no one can be absolutely sure how a proliferation of pot shops will affect town traffic, I believe it is very likely to be negatively. And even if I am wrong, how can the four council members who are promoting this issue guarantee that it won’t.

The most amazing part of this issue is that there is no apparent upside for the town. These four council members are willing to take significant risk with the town’s reputation and brand without the promise of any reward. I have yet to talk to anyone who believes this is a potential benefit to the town. Just as amazing is the fact that the town spends about $3 million a year advertising to the world that Breckenridge is a great place to bring your family. This message appears to conflict with the pot heaven they are promoting.

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Costanza: Marijuana mania mars Breckenridge’s family friendly image

August 28, 2014 — 

Marijuana mars Breck’s image

I was appalled to see the front page of the Summit Daily on Aug. 27.

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Craven: Friends of the Eagles Nest Wilderness celebrates 20th anniversary

August 26, 2014 — 

I am writing to invite one and all to a birthday party! Friends of the Eagles Nest Wilderness (FENW) is celebrating the 5oth Anniversary of the Wilderness Act, and the 20th Anniversary of FENW. The Wilderness Act is landmark legislation with worldwide significance. Observing these significant milestones is worthy of a community gathering

Since May of 1994, FENW has worked to assist the US Forest Service manage and care for designated Wilderness Areas of Summit and Eagle Counties. FENW has adopted as central beliefs and operating tenets four principles; education, outreach, stewardship, and advocacy. Our organization fully supports responsible multiple use of public lands.

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Smeltzer: Annual Summit Senior Rummage Sale a success

August 22, 2014 — 

The Annual Summit Senior Rummage Sale and Silent Auction was held last week at the Summit County Senior and Community Center in Frisco. The sale is a perfect balance of reallocation of goods and services. Those needing to clean out and simplify, donate, and those looking for a special find or great deal come here. Keeping useable items out of the landfill while raising funds for grants that go back to the community, it’s a true community compost.

This sale takes months of planning and organizing all by volunteers in our community. Volunteers run the show, gathering and storing sale items, organizing donations, set up & tear down, sales, coming together for a few short days to make it happen. The generosity of volunteers with their energy and time and the community businesses which donate goods and services help to raise over $40,000 in grant money. It’s events like this that make me proud to be a part of this community. Many thanks and gratitude to my fellow volunteers, sponsoring businesses, donors and the community, together made this year’s sale another success story.

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Bell: With marijuana-on-Main issue, Breckenridge playing with fire

August 21, 2014 — 

On the marijuana on Main St. debate, the pro argument centers on the inequity created by allowing some businesses to operate on Main while others are banned. On the surface this is a valid point; however, it either ignores or downplays the adverse impact on the community over the long run.

In the 15 years that I’ve lived in the community, the town has seen tremendous growth. That growth has not come by accident, rather by a significant amount of planning and cultivation of an image that has been greeted with a remarkable response. We often take for granted the unique charm that has been crafted over many years by town planners, staff, and community members.

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Power: Summit County recpath a deadly accident waiting to happen

August 14, 2014 — 

I’ve lived in Summit County since 1988. I’ve been cycling the rec path since then. I’m on the path roughly 20 hours, or 350 miles, a week.

We all know the problems caused by reckless bike rental companies that drop off unsuspecting tourists at the top of Vail Pass. We all know the problems caused by off-leash dogs as the path runs through Frisco. I myself have been in the ER twice due to accidents caused by tourists who don’t know how to ride a bike.

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Hertzberg: Who’s Jimmy Carter calling a ‘nutcase’?

August 14, 2014 — 

To be denigrated by our former President Jimmy Carter as a “nutcase” because I disagree with his position on human-caused global warming, is discouraging (Summit Daily News, August 14). But my judgment is solid and is based on an evaluation of the totality of the data. For the analysis of the issue from some of the world’s most distinguished scientists, go to www.climateconference.heartland.org/ . The real data contradict the ignorant “consensus” that human emission of CO2 is the driver of weather and climate. You will then find out who the real “nutcases” are.

Dr. Martin Hertzberg

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Dudick: The Breckenridge marijuana equation

August 12, 2014 — 

I think the Breckenridge Town Council is heading in the wrong direction on the marijuana question and the permutation of issues surrounding it.

First, I voted for 64 and have no problem whatsoever with legal recreational use of marijuana.

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Horbach: Marijuana undermines Breckenridge’s family friendly atmosphere

August 8, 2014 — 

A Colorado contact high for Nebraska

Re: Breckenridge debate on allowing marijuana shops on Main Street.

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Barr: Nebraska should follow Colorado’s lead on marijuana

August 7, 2014 — 

Nebraska blues result of criminalizing pot

Re: Larry Horbach’s August 6 letter to the editor.

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Beavers: Breckenridge ain’t Disneyland bubba

August 7, 2014 — 

After reading Larry Horbach’s recent letter, I was a little confused. Part-time resident? Really dude? I’m happy that these types can’t vote in our local elections. Young children? This isn’t Disneyland? It’s dangerous for most adults. Board the purple Goofey Tram for Peak 8! Hemp? I’m not even going to go into this bit of history. Really dude? Attorney general? Really dude? Frustration at the border? State of Colorado officals should have refused his entry into the state. If this is the type of guest Breckenridge is attracting then stay over there Larry. I guess you hit the big time with your timeshare at Beaver Run! Being a Frisco home owner, and full-time resident I take joy that people like Larry, will never be able to afford real estate in Frisco.

Michael Beavers

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Decker: Garbage along Lake Dillon a dam shame

August 5, 2014 — 

I spent about an hour today walking the lakeshore off the Dillon Dam Road with my dog. He and I often stop here when we don’t have time for a longer hike, usually before I head to work for the day. Every time we’ve come to the lake at this spot, I’ve carried a trash bag with me because of the disgustingly, obscenely large amount of trash and filth in such a pretty place.

It starts with the broken glass, which is everywhere (big shards, little shards, half bottles, random fragments of smashed Christmas ornaments for some reason.) The glass debris field starts at the main parking area near the Frisco end of the road and is strewn all the way down to the lake.

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Shepherd: Support the Rocky Mountain Recreation and Wilderness Preservation Act

August 1, 2014 — 

We stood quietly. The bull moose with his grand spreading antlers stopped his willow munching to look at us. The zoom on our cameras cut the distance between us. After a few minutes we left the moose in peace and returned to our campsite. A day earlier we’d sat quietly on top of Pacific Peak watching a pika dart between nearby boulders. A marmot watched us from a farther perch. Later we walked through an alpine meadow below Pacific Peak that was awash in wildflowers, dazzling our eyes. Each of these scenes had brought smiles to our faces. Each deserves protection, so that future generations of visitors to the Tenmile Range can smile too. I gladly support Congressman Jared Polis’ proposal to protect Tenmile Range among other wonderful areas featured in his Rocky Mountain Recreation and Wilderness Preservation Act. It sets a good balance between conservation and recreation. Recreation is what brought us to Summit County for the visit; the memories of the moose, pika, marmot and wildflowers are what will bring us back time and time again.

Like so many other visitors to Eagle and Summit counties, in one short visit not only did we have the pleasure of experiencing solitude in the High Country, surrounded by the sounds of birds, the gurgling of clean mountain streams and the breeze carrying fragrances of wildflowers, but we also enjoyed shopping and eating in two mountain towns, one in each county. Protecting those approximately 60,000 acres of federal land with a mix of wilderness and other designations is crucial to sustaining the thriving tourist economy of Eagle and Summit counties’ mountain towns. Please join me in supporting this Preservation Act.

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Brockmeier: Browns Canyon something Democrats and Republicans can agree on

July 31, 2014 — 

Browns Canyon something Democrats and Republicans can agree on

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Bainbridge: The Summit County Senior Center defies expectations

July 29, 2014 — 

When my husband and I retired and moved here in 2010 we started looking around about how to get connected to the community. There were the obvious avenues, church, neighbors, etc, and then someone brought up the Senior Center. My husband wouldn’t “hear of this.” His picture of a Senior Center, and mine, quite frankly, was defined by elderly folks drinking coffee, hanging over the newspaper while their loved ones ran an errand. Perhaps we could visualize a card game in a back room, but not much more than that. We thought of it as a holding place.

Little did we know that this picture is certainly not the Summit County Senior Center.

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Kinkennon: A recreation management area is right for our community, wilderness

July 25, 2014 — 

A recreation management area is right for our community, wilderness

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Dobbs: Vail Pass recpath newbies need to know rules of the road

July 25, 2014 — 

There are companies that take tourists to the top of Vail Pass in a van— from both sides, Summit County and Vail — then let them coast back down on a bike. That’s fine; it’s more of an amusement park ride than a workout, but I don’t begrudge visitors from the lower levels of our planet the thrill of flying down The Pass.

But as one of the many riders in the area who does actually climb both sides of The Pass on my bike before reaping the reward of a fast descent, I do begrudge the poor level of instruction tourists get from some of the drivers and guides who set them free to make their way to the bottom. Three times in a single day this month, I came close to a collision because no one had told these downhill riders the “rules of the road”… or, no one had told them loud enough… or, no one had told them twice!

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Mast: Angels on Quandary Peak

July 23, 2014 — 

Angels on Quandary Peak

Yesterday I was hiking to Quandary Peak with my family ... our first 14er attempt. We were all in awe of the beauty and grandeur of the summit view. Pristine is all I could say! But I was overwhelmed to observe the best of the human spirit on our descent.

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Pacot: Ayn Rand Republicans on the Colorado ballot

July 21, 2014 — 

Ayn Rand Republicans on the Colorado ballot

“The goal of the ‘liberals’—as it emerges from the record of the past decades—was to smuggle this country into welfare statism by means of single, concrete, specific measures, enlarging the power of the government a step at a time, never permitting these steps to be summed up into principles, never permitting their direction to be identified or the basic issue to be named. Thus statism was to come, not by vote or by violence, but by slow rot—by a long process of evasion and epistemological corruption, leading to a fait accompli.” – Ayn Rand

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Bird: Republicans policies play out in Kansas

July 21, 2014 — 

Republicans policies play out in Kansas

To butress the letter by Andrew Cohen’s July 17 letter regarding Kim McGahey’s “rose colored view” of the Republican Party, one need only look east to Kansas. Governor Brownback embracing the philosophies of the right wing party and the Koch brothers is ruining the Kansas economy. Thus far losing the state revenue, closing schools and hurting hospitals and more. His underfunding of education has led to the federal government stepping in to remedy the situation. At least 100 Republicans have vowed to support the Democratic candidate for Governor where the polls show Brownback trailing badly and threatening to turn Kansas Democratic. Brownbacks right wing philosophies of cutting taxes has backfired badly. Offering a no tax policy to any new business entering Kansas, the result was many larger companies have applied to be taxed as small companies giving the Governor a false sense of growth and revenue losses.

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Ward: Preventing clear cutting has been a 30-year mistake

July 19, 2014 — 

Preventing clear-cutting has been a 30-year mistake

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Cohen: Response to a Republican’s revisionist history

July 16, 2014 — 

I am writing in response to the opinion of Kim McGahey in the July 12 paper.

His article was full of “truthiness” as described by a brilliant conservative commentator. So many points are absurdly incorrect as to make one wonder where he is making up his facts from. He states the Republican party is an open/big tent party, citing a few women and minority candidates as proofs of this. Currently Republicans are 89% white compared to 60% of Democrats. Only 5% of all blacks consider themselves Republicans as opposed to 64% for Democrats. Hispanics are 13% Republican vs 32% Democratic.

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Harrison: Summit County bikers and the rules of the road

July 16, 2014 — 

Recently, as I was crossing the street on my way to work as usual, I almost got run over by a man on his bicycle. Bikes are certainly not out of the ordinary in Breckenridge, but what got me was that the man yelled at me as if it was my fault. I would like to remind all those happy bikers out there that as stated on the Town of Breckenridge website, “Both bicyclists and motorists are expected to follow the Colorado state traffic rules and regulations within Town limits.” And yes, that means stopping at stop signs, or at least slowing down to look for cars and pedestrians. So to the cranky bicyclist, you might want to re-read your driver’s ed manual.

Susan Harrison

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