Sizing up the campaign … |

Sizing up the campaign …

Don Rogers

Some early-bird candidates for the Vail Town Council already are impressing with a higher level of planning and initiative than we’ve frankly seen in recent campaigns for local office.

“Pro-business” candidates Kent Logan and incumbent Bill Jewitt have laid out a platform of principles and ideas. The game plan is in an effort to declare their approach to leading the town through this cross-roads between eras.

Community-centered Mark Gordon, who is contemplating a candidacy, has begun to lay out his ideas in similar list form.

These are great tools for voters, who will have a tight window between Sept. 15 and voting day Nov. 4 to figure out the slate of candidates for Vail’s council.

In addition to attracting the notice of voters, the Logan-Jewitt would-be bloc aims to recruit enough like-minded candidates to go into election day with a viable majority that subscribes to their pro-business platform.

Gordon, Jewitt and Logan have also taken one more early step by seeking out discussions with newspaper editors, along with their town’s shakers, movers and “ordinary” folk.

Jewitt and Logan spring from a series of discussions organized by Kaye Ferry aiming to field that majority of like-minded office seekers. Ferry herself has long been suspected of holding council aspirations. She has ardent loyalists, and also a high “dislike” factor among the community she happily serves as lightning rod.

Of the incumbents, Jewitt is committed to running for re-election and Chuck Ogilby has had enough. Dick Cleveland and Diana Donovan, of course, still have two years left on their terms and can watch with interest.

Ludwig Kurz, Vail’s genteel mayor for these past four years, has the unique decision of whether to end his last term in November’s election or continue on until February, when a special election would decide his successor. The wise move would be to save the town a few thousand dollars of election costs, hardly worth three extra months, in our view, and open his seat in the coming general election.

Incumbents Greg Moffet and Rod Slifer were still weighing their options last a reporter asked. Both still have much to offer, and experience on the council is a grand teacher.

But as Slifer put so directly as always: “You need a fire in the belly and the desire to do it.”

Make no mistake, serving on councils and boards and such is exhausting, often frustrating work. Office holders sacrifice time from family – and much of life – to wade through dense tomes and make tough decisions for a largely inattentive public only to hear what boobs they must be from the sideline critics.

Better make that a bonfire in the belly.

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