Council members asked not to vote |

Council members asked not to vote

Christine Ina Casillas

An Avon Town councilman and his wife have been asked to recuse themselves from any decisions with connections to Vail Resorts.

“As we are sure you and the other members of the Avon Town Council are aware, Councilman Peter Buckley has sued, and has announced his intention to sue, Vail Resorts, Inc. and certain of its subsidiaries and employees. This lawsuit is pending in District Court in Eagle County,” Martha Dugan Rehm, senior vice president and general counsel for Vail Resorts, wrote Tuesday in a letter to Avon Mayor Buz Reynolds.

Buckley and his wife, Debbie – who also is on the Avon Town Council -operates, a home computer and Internet business that is a business competitor of Vail.Net, Inc., a subsidiary of the ski company.

“When business comes before the Avon Town Council involved Vail Resorts, Inc. and its affiliates, we believe that the councilman and his wife, Debbie Buckley, (also a town of Avon council member) should be disqualified from participation in discussions and voting on the issue,” Rehm added.

John Dunn, attorney for Avon, said Debbie Buckley didn’t enter any kind of conflict with the resort company and didn’t need to be recused from any of the decision-making.

Investigators’ reports said there may have been antagonism between Pete Buckley and rival Vail.Net after he unsuccessfully applied for a job at the company.

In September 2001, Vail.Net, a local e-mail and Internet provider, reported its server was overwhelmed with nearly 20,000 messages, effectively shutting down service to Vail.Net customers, according to investigator’s reports. Some of those messages, the reports state, bore an Internet protocol address from Buckley’s computer.

Charges of felony computer crime and transmitting a computer virus were filed by the District Attorney’s Office the next month, in October 2001, after the Eagle County Sheriff’s Office and the Colorado Bureau of Investigation seized a dozen home computers from Buckley’s home after some of the “spam” messages allegedly showed the his address on the Internet.

Buckley faced three felony charges, which could have carried sentences of two to six years and a fine of up to $500,000.

Buckley was accused of illegally flooding a rival’s e-mail server with thousands of “spam” messages, or bogus e-mails.

Those charges were dropped last week.

Cliff Thompson and Veronica Whitney contributed to this report.

Christine Ina Casillas can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 607 or at

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