Prudence, and rush jobs |

Prudence, and rush jobs

Don Rogers

Eagle County Commissioners Arn Menconi and Peter Runyon are asking prudent questions about that livestock pavilion and/or events center or whatever it was that the previous board seemed to rush to fund at the end of last year.The then-majority of Commissioners Tom Stone and Michael Gallagher did seem to be in an awful hurry at the 11th hour of last year’s budgeting cycle. That rush seems to have overlooked quite a bit, besides the public getting a real look at the idea. Menconi, now chairman of the board, is right to proceed cautiously from here.Too bad he and Commissioner Runyon have failed to exercise the same careful judgment with another rush job: Spending $6 million to save the bulk of the gravel pit in downtown Edwards.The care that Menconi is exercising with the livestock pavilion or events center or whatever it is really, really needed to be exercised with the 72-acre Eaton parcel that will suck two years’ worth of open space funding that the county did not need to spend in order to save the land of most value for open space.Where Menconi in particular has exercised prudence with the fairgrounds building, he and Runyon allowed themselves to be stampeded by a Vail Valley Foundation deadline, and frankly made a rash decision to blow through all the open space fund this year and dip into the county’s general fund for $2.2 million more. Our stance is not against wise use of the open space fund to maximize preservation in Eagle County. It most definitely is against squandering $6 million where prime riverfront would have been saved without the county emptying its purse.By all means, be prudent – but with all the spending. Vail, Colorado

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