Taking Avon for a ride | VailDaily.com

Taking Avon for a ride

Pete BuckleySpecial to the Daily

Author’s Note: It’s time to check in on Avon’s new Town Council. Just exactly what has our new left-of-center council been up to in their first fledgling months in office? Enjoy part one of this ridership-driven conversation as we take a bus ride with Avon Mayor Ron Wolfe. As with all buses, there are riders on the left and riders on the right as represented by the political comments from the electorate addressing the current development issues facing the town. …Mayor Ron: I’m drivin’ the bus now and after last November’s election and ya’all know where we’re headed, and that be to the left!Right Passenger: Ron, I keep looking out the window of this bus and the stuff I see going by is a concern to me. Where are you driving us? Passenger Left: Them right-side riders always scares easy, Ron. Jus ‘cuz we made ’em pay at the last gas stop. And that damn TABOR law says us lefties gotta take our turn at the next stop. I hate that dang law! Can’t we just issue another bond, like the last time it was our turn to pay? How about a special district, Ron?Mayor Ron: Don’t bother me with questions about who’s gonna pay next, I gotta steer through another left turn ahead. Right Passenger: Ron, I see out the window that proposed Lot 61 deal you tried to drive through council didn’t quite make it. I mean, how is an additional 166 time-share units on Lot 61 going to benefit the town of Avon? Shoot, Avon’s downtown area already has an existing 270 time-shares at the Christie Lodge and 163 time-shares at the Sheraton, not to mention 52 condos at the Avon Center, all owned by folks who don’t live here! Hey, enough already!Passenger Left: Ron, these dang right riders just don’t have a clue about your agenda, do they?Mayor Ron: Look, when it comes to time-shares in Avon, if some is good, then more must be better!Right Passenger: Ron, some of us on this side of the bus are concerned that our Avon sense of community is being somehow outsourced. I mean, how does it benefit Avon to have at least 95 percent of our downtown residential real estate owned by a bunch people who don’t live in Avon?Passenger Left: Stop bothering the bus driver with details! Can’t you see we need his vision to drive this bus left – er, I mean – forward? After all, Ron’s an open-space advocate, don’t you know?Mayor Ron: You betcha! After I got Avon’s Council to support my Eaton Ranch position, I visited the Vail Town Council and talked them into supportin’ an spendin’ all the Eagle County open space tax money, too! And millions more from the county’s general fund! Yeehaw! Ya’all can’t say that Avon’s mayor doesn’t work to support open space in Edwards, now can you? I just love drivin’ this bus to the left!Right Passenger: Hey Ron, weren’t you elected to represent the interests of the Avon taxpayer first?Passenger Left: I told you to stop botherin’ our driver with those kinda questions! What’s wrong with you, Righty?Mayor Ron: Shoot Lefty, righty’s just pointin’ out a mere bump in the road in my view. You outta know that! But me and Harry Frampton gots us a real problem right now.Passenger Left: Come on now, Ron. Everybody knows you supported Harry’s position on spending all the open space tax money and millions more on Eaton Ranch in Edwards.Right Passenger: Yeah Ron, so what’s the problem? After all, you supported Harry, why he’s Mr. Open Space himself, according to the newspaper!Mayor Ron: Well, here goes. Harry is busy planning to eradicate 19 acres of Avon’s downtown open space at the same time he and I are supporting 72 acres of Eaton Ranch open space in Edwards.Right Passenger: Huh? Or should I say, oops? Houston, do we have a problem?Mayor Ron: Well, there’s a proposal from Harry that’s about to become public, to do a big development on Avon’s confluence site.Passenger Left: Yeah, Ron, that’s the spot in Avon where they hold the Beaver Creek Rodeo every summer. All 19 acres of it, right at the bottom of Beaver Creek and right along the Eagle River. Edwards gets more open space and Avon gets more time-shares and development. Why, that’s fair, isn’t it?Mayor Ron: Yup. I’m doin’ everything I can to make sure Harry can do what Harry wants in Avon! Why he sure ain’t no Magnus Lindholm!Passenger Right: Ron, how can the both of you claim to support open space and more Eagle County development, all at the same time? Aren’t people going to say they can’t rely on you because both of you flip-flop on that issue?To be continued …Peter Buckley is a former Avon town councilman.Vail, Colorado

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