Vail Daily letter: About those signatures
Vail, CO Colorado
This is in response to Pam Boyd’s Nov. 26 story about dual signatures on an anti- ERS petition and pro- ERS petition and to Paulo Narduzzi’s letter to the editor on Dec. 3: All the names on our various peti-tions have been compiled over the last three years since Eagle River Station has been on the table. Every name on there was either signed by the busi-ness owner, taken over the phone, names taken at our booths at various events, through a mailer response card or taken off our online petition. Each one is 100 percent valid.
We learned that several Broadway business owners signed the pro-ERS petition the day before the Town Board vote. That’s when Vince Riggio was out getting those signatures.
I talked with several signers. They had signed both our business peti-tions – at different times. Another business owner told me verbatim “they felt pressured by Vince; they saw that others had signed it, so it must be a good thing, and if the vote was a yes, we should get revenue for downtown.” Their petition urged the Town Board to pledge ongoing financial support for the central business dis-trict – the area on and around Broad-way. It asked the Town Board to com-mit at least 15 percent of the revenues generated annually by Eagle River Sta-tion toward the improvement of the central business district.
Hay was quoted as saying “her sup-port was totally based on her desire to have some of the Eagle River Station revenue, if the development is approved, earmarked for downtown.” What I learned from the people I spoke with is that they signed the pro-petition because IF ERS went through, then, of course, they would want that 15 percent put back into downtown.
I, as a downtown business owner, would feel the same way if it got approved.
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However, that is not the case. No one can guarantee that any funds will go to downtown or to any other part of town specifically. The trustees did not vote on giving 15 percent of the rev-enues to downtown or to any other area of town.
In fact, the ballot language states that any money that “may” go toward improvements and infrastructure is “at the sole discretion of the board.”
Again, no guarantees. Who knows who will be on that Town Board years from now? And that’s if ERS gets approved and if it gets built and makes money.
More importantly, there is no phas-ing plan, there are no signed retailers nor any “real” projections, the project is not in compliance with the existing master plan, their market plan is way outdated, and ERS is just too plain big for Eagle.
I spoke with one of the business owners mentioned in Boyd’s article and Narduzzi’s letter. He definitely signed on our online petition. We just transferred his name over; that’s why he didn’t “recognize the signature” on the hard copy.
No way would we jeopardize our reputation by putting names on there if we didn’t have permission or if peo-ple hadn’t signed the online petition.
Also, he confirmed that he was mak-ing a business decision when he signed the pro petition. If it came down to a “yes” vote, he wanted 15 percent to go back into Broadway. That’s how the majority of the other owners felt.
Narduzzi’s nonsensical comment about “not being surprised” about the signature doesn’t hold one ounce of water and is yet another mud-slinging, ill attempt to discredit our position and our facts. I won’t even waste the ink on the rest of his unfounded, inflammato-ry comments in his letter on Dec. 3.
The bottom line, irrespective of petitions and who signed what and when, is that the real vote takes place Jan. 5. We urge all voters to get informed and vote “no” to ERS. Log on to http://www.votenoers.com, and please come to an upcoming community meeting listed on that site.
Jan Rosenthal Townsend Eagle