Made up your mind yet, Eagle County? |

Made up your mind yet, Eagle County?

Melanie Wong
Eagle County, CO Colorado

EAGLE COUNTY ” Voters in Eagle County, Colorado will have a sizable list of races and amendments to decide on when they hit the polls on today.

Besides the presidential race, voters will also choose U.S. and State senate representatives, county and town leaders, and decide more than a dozen state amendments and referendums. Here’s a run down of the issues and races

Republican and former commissioner Dick Gustafson, of Vail, will face Democrat and incumbent Peter Runyon, of Edwards.

– Runyon is running his campaign on managing growth, correcting the balance between second homes and locals housing, and transportation. Four new roundabouts planned for the Edwards interstate exit are the result of the county working with Edwards leaders and the state, he said.

– Gustafson said he wants to see less spending by commissioners, lower property taxes and he is against the county building affordable housing and providing child care. Instead, the county should encourage private businesses to provide those things, he said. He says the county needs more rental housing, not more for-sale housing.

Republican and former Avon Town Council member Debbie Buckley will face and Democrat and former Eagle mayor Jon Stavney for the seat vacated by term-limited Arn Menconi.

– Stavney wants the county to be very involved with building and providing affordable housing. He defended the recent property tax hike as necessary for a growing county. He advocates for or developing in already urbanized areas.

– Buckley also wants to lower property taxes, and calls for less spending and better transparency on the board of commissioners. She also believes the county should be encouraging the private sector to build workforce housing and provide child care. She wants to get citizens more involved in county business.

Five candidates are running for three council spots. Kristi Ferraro, an attorney, and Amy Phillips, who works in ad sales, are the two incumbents running for re-election.

Buz Reynolds, a builder and former mayor and councilman, has expressed worry about the building in Avon in the current economy.

Karri Willemssen, who works in property management, has taken a focus on providing more affordable housing in Avon.

Sharon Peach, an anesthesiologist, has spoken out as a big supporter of Avon’s Main Street project.

Hayden Republican and state Rep. Al White is running against Steamboat Springs Democrat Ken Brenner.

– Both candidates have a focus on water conservation.

– Brenner wants to investigate gas price regulation, while White said the solution is more competition.

– Brenner said he supports long-term solutions to Interstate 70 traffic and wants to work on finding funding, while White said first “choke points” must be fixed, then the state should look at a reworking of the whole interstate, including some sort of mass transportation.

Democrat and incumbent Christine Scanlan of Summit County faces challenger and Republican Muhammad Ali Hasan of Beaver Creek.

– Pine beetle ” Scanlan supports securing federal funding for local projects on the forest’s fringes, while Hasan wants less regulation of local management of national forests.

– I-70 ” Hasan says his first priority will be to push for a high-speed monorail system from Denver International Airport to Gypsum, a project that could be funded partially by a tax. However, Scanlan said the costs for an immediate monorail are too high. She wants to study the possibility and add more lanes in the meantime.

U.S. Senator

– U.S. Rep. Mark (D)

– Bob Schaffer (R)

U.S. House of Representatives

– Jared Polis (D)

– Scott Starin (R)

Note: 14 questions will appear on the ballot, but amendments 53, 55, 56 and 57 have been pulled and votes on those measures will not be counted.

Amendment 46: Would prohibit Colorado governments from discriminating against or granting preferential treatment to any person or group on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin in public employment, public education or public contracting.

Amendment 47: Would prohibit requiring an employee to join and pay dues or fees to a labor union as a condition of employment.

Amendment 48: Would define a “person” to include “any human being from the moment of fertilization.”

Amendment 49: Would prohibit deductions from public employee paychecks with the exception of those required by federal law, tax withholdings, liens and garnishments, health benefits and other insurance, savings, and contributions to tax-exempt organizations.

Amendment 50: Would allow residents of Central City, Black Hawk and Cripple Creek to vote to extend casino hours, add games and increase the maximum single bet limit. The additional revenue would benefit Colorado community colleges.

Amendment 51: This amendment would increase the state sales and use tax to raise money for services for people with developmental disabilities. The money would help eliminate what are now long waiting lists for the services.

Amendment 52: Asks whether voters want to allocate severance taxes ” a tax on the state’s non-renewable resources that are removed from the ground ” on highway projects, especially for relieving congestion on Interstate 70.

Amendment 54: Would prohibit government contractors from contributing to a political party for the contract’s duration and two years thereafter. It would also prohibit contributors to ballot issue campaigns from entering into government contracts relating to the ballot issue.

Amendment 58: Would increase the state severance tax paid by oil and gas companies, by removing a state tax credit.

Amendment 59: Would eliminate rebates that taxpayers receive when the state collects more money than it is allowed, and spend the money on pre-school through 12th grade education. It would also eliminate a required inflationary increase for preschool through 12th grade education. The measure would also set aside money in a new savings account for education in the state.

Referendum L: This lowers the age requirement for serving in the state legislature from 25 to 21.

Referendum M: This removes a provision that allows the state to delay taxing land value increases from planting hedges, orchards and forests on private lands.

Referendum N: This removes provisions related to the regulation of alcohol. The provisions have to do with the state’s ability to prohibit and regulate the production and selling of impure alcohol.

Referendum O: The measure would decrease the number of signatures required to place a statutory ballot initiative on the ballot and increase the number of signatures required to place a constitutional initiative on the ballot.

It would require that eight percent of signatures for constitutional initiatives be gathered from each congressional district and that drafts of proposed constitutional initiatives be submitted for review earlier in the year. It would also extend the time period for the collection of signatures for statutory initiatives, along with increasing the number of votes required for the Legislature to change a statutory initiative for five years after the statute takes effect.

Staff Writer Melanie Wong can be reached at 970-748-2928 or

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