Opinion: Silverthorne is resilient, looking to the future
Kevin McDonald, mayor pro tem
Kelly Baldwin, Derrick Fowler, Tanya Shattuck and Michael Spry, council members
Amy Manka, council member-elect
The presence of COVID-19 in our community has caused an unprecedented challenge for each and every one of us in our daily lives. It feels like a lifetime ago that we went to work and school and carried on with our days in whatever manner we chose. The first case in Colorado was found here in Summit County on March 5, and our world hasn’t been the same since. In a few short weeks, our town’s and nation’s economies have paused to “do our part” to save lives and keep our health care providers from being overwhelmed.
We hear you. We understand the burden that this puts on our community — especially one dependent on tourism. The decisions that have been made at the town, county and state levels have not been easy ones. As town officials, we have not taken this crisis lightly, and we are committed to making the best decisions possible to not only save lives but to also save livelihoods.
The town of Silverthorne is committed to being by your side through this crisis. Our state and federal governments are working on support and recovery plans to help citizens get through these tough times, and the town of Silverthorne is doing the same. As a first step, Silverthorne contributed $60,000 to the Family & Intercultural Resource Center to provide immediate emergency assistance to the nonprofit’s community programs for those in need. As town officials sort through community assistance options, know that we are planning for additional relief for our community.
As a town without a property tax that is driven by sales taxes, Silverthorne will reassess its priorities and adjust its plan with the new landscape that lies ahead. Rest assured that critical town services like law enforcement, water and sewer service, finance operations and snow removal will always continue without interruption, while town officials work to plan for the day when our doors are open and recovery begins.
Our commitment to you comes with an ask that you do your part by participating in the requests that have been made by our county and state to protect one another with social distancing. Let’s do everything we can to stay healthy and keep our most vulnerable residents out of harm’s way. Check in with those who might need some help — and get outside! We all need that fresh mountain air.
Please help yourself, help your family, and help your neighbor. Let’s crush this virus together and get back to the life that we all know and love in our beloved mountain town. One day, we will celebrate our efforts at a First Friday — a sign that normalcy has returned in our valley. And we will know that we made it happen together.
We look forward to brighter days ahead.
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