Letters to the editor
December 30, 2003
It’s the drivers, not the weather
I believe this is about the third time this winter that I have seen a headline in the Vail Daily that blames accidents on winter storms. I write because I believe it is grossly misleading to say that the storms cause the accidents.
Poor drivers cause accidents. I believe every law enforcement officer you have interviewed regarding these accidents has suggested this, but you do not seem to pay attention.
Disputing town figures
I am writing regarding the news article entitled “Big boxes strain police manpower,” as written in the Saturday, Dec. 27, edition of the Vail Daily. The article would lead the reader to believe that the Eagle County Assessor’s Office was remiss in assessing the Home Depot and Wal-Mart stores constructed in Avon in 2003.
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The article also implies that the revenue loss from the assessor’s less than “whole” assessment has caused a $500,000 deficit in the town’s budget. In actuality, both box stores were approximately 50 percent complete Jan. 1, resulting in an assessment and tax based on less than a 100 percent assessment. This type of assessment is mandatory, according to Colorado law, and is calculated on all real property improvements (buildings) which are found to be less than 100 percent complete on Jan. 1 of any given year.
The estimated tax to be collected by the town for the two stores based on the 2003 percent complete assessment is $65,825. The estimated tax to be collected by the town when the property is assessed at 100 percent is $96,926. The difference calculates to $31,101, not the $500,000 as reported in the article.
It appears that facts were confused in the article concerning the “invoice services agreement” between the town of Avon and the stores and the assessment process. I hope this letter serves to correct any questions that may be raised by readers regarding the stores property assessments and purported revenue shortfalls experienced by Avon.
Eagle County Assessor’s Office
I very much enjoyed Richard Carnes’ column “A little something for everyone.” I thought that your gifts were totally appropriate.
In my case, however, you missed one. You could have also recommended something written or spoken by Tom DeLay. I confess that I didn’t do exactly what you suggested, but I did read Rush Limbaugh’s book, I listened to Bill O’Reilly (I have trouble watching him smirk ), and I tuned in to Ann Coulter.
My assessments were that Limbaugh was hallucinating (I suspect from too much medication ); O’Reilly was a rude, boorish interviewer; and Ann Coulter may have had some sort of seizure that affected her mental health. At any rate, she would do well to read Michael Moore’s latest book.
So I’ve done approximately what you suggested! Can I now return to being just a person who believes that the current administration has little interest in the needs of our less-fortunate citizens and also that their policies continue to do great damage to the long term future of our country?
David Le Vine