Serious reasons to oppose home rule
Vail CO, Colorado
1. The Eagle County Democratic platform is against this proposal. Their platform says, “The Eagle County Democratic Party prefers a charter which calls for commissioners who represent a district to be elected by the electors in that district and not at-large.” This flawed proposal does the opposite.
2. The Eagle County Republicans are against this flawed proposal for the same reasons as the Democratic platform, and more, as expressed by Randy Milhoan, chairman. Make them do it right!
3. This flawed home rule policy is not worth the cost, which will be exorbitant. More commissioners, more secretaries, more equipment, remodeling costs for offices, additional cars, additional insurance, additional gasoline, additional airline tickets to Washington D.C. to lobby Congress, etc., year-in and year-out, forever, is not justified at this time.
4. This proposal doesn’t give us the right to petition our government for meaningful issues, like the citizens of Vail have under their home rule charter. And, it took them approximately 20 years to get those rights. Vail recently voted on the Solaris land-use issue. Under this Eagle County proposed home rule charter, Eagle County citizens cannot vote on land issues like Vail recently did. Most governments take money in, spend money out, and make land decisions. Vail can do that, but we can’t under this flawed proposal.
5. Rich people could anonymously attempt to buy commissioner elections, if a rogue board, by a simple 3-2 vote on a one-time resolution, decided to end our state’s fair campaign law requirement.
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This is amazingly permitted by the state. Why would we risk this from potentially happening and preventing us from knowing who a donor was and how much they were spending. This cannot happen if we vote no on home rule!
6. This flawed home rule proposal is way too risky. We don’t want to violate peoples’ constitutional rights by an ordinance vote by a potential rogue 3-2 vote of county commissioners. That is way too much power for a commission board to have, to pre-empt our state constitution by a simple 3-2 vote and no vote required from the county or state voters. This is extremely dangerous and will get us sued often, like the City and County of Denver has been.
7. The proposed home rule charter does not spell out the necessary policies on how Eagle County will be governed. Show us the policies before we vote on home rule. We should not give them a blank check to make up the major policies as they go along. This is a flawed proposal!
8. Only two of Colorado’s 64 counties have switched to home rule. Aspen has already tried to fix theirs several times. Why risk this here?
9. This home rule proposal actually limits citizens’ power. They have it completely backwards. Our constitution of the United States limits the federal government’s power. Our home rule charter should limit the county government’s power, not our power!
10. The government will move at a snail’s pace with two more commissioners. We deserve reasonable decisions in a timely manner.
11. Shifting the power to a county manager under this proposal, gives too much power to the county manager. We prefer to have our county commissioners have the most power, and not strengthen the power of an unelected county manager.
12. We don’t need a home rule charter to get ethics laws. We already have ethics laws in this state. We just need to enforce the ones we have.
13. We already have a requirement for our commissioner candidates to declare a political party, if they are affiliated. We don’t need a home rule charter to do what is already required.
14. If we want five commissioners, we can get that soon without living with all the negatives of this flawed home rule proposal.
15. We have been designated “Best Run County” by the Colorado Counties Association. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!
This proposal has many flaws and is way too risky. The people deserve better than this proposal. If we are going to have home rule, we need to get it right the first time.
Please vote no on home rule ” again! Remember, your mail ballot must reach the clerk’s office by May 1.
Mike Reid is the treasurer of Citizens For Responsible Government.