Vail Daily letter: Bidez seeks seat on Minturn Town Council
Minturn, CO, Colorado
Why I wish to serve on Minturn Council:
I moved to Minturn in 1981, where I met my wife and have raised two great kids. I have owned (with my wife, Patty) a business that has operated in Minturn since 1986. I can’t imagine living anywhere else.
I have served on the planning commission; co-chaired the master plan of the early ’90s; served on the Town Council from 1994-2000 and one term as mayor 2002-2004.
I strongly supported the Battle Mountain agreement that the Town Council did such a great job negotiating.
I am a firm believer in fiscal responsibility and believe the councils first responsibility is to provide safety and basic services. That means infrastructure, most importantly water and sewer. But also getting sidewalks with curb and gutter along Main Street where they currently aren’t.
We must safeguard our most valuable asset, the one that brought most of us here: our beautiful environment. The river, the elk migration paths, our wetlands must all be protected. It is everyone’s responsibility.
It also requires us to be aggressively diligent with the EPA Superfund site to assure that Viacom does the job right and keeps doing it right in the future.
I have the experience to understand that governing is a balancing act of trying to get done what you can on limited resources and understanding that those limited resources are coming from the wallets of our constituents. With that in mind, while I must help assure the delivery of services to our citizens, we must be mindful of the onerous burden that the rise of property taxes have been to citizens and businesses at a time when we are trying to make a living in a very tough environment.
I also understand that while times may be hard, Minturn as a town is doing much better than it has in the past. Our budget looks better than 20 years ago. We have a new town hall, a new public works facility, and a new fire house staffed with the best equipment and well trained firemen.
Whether the Battle Mountain development on the horizon happens now or later, we as a town will be fine and do not need to succumb to alarmist rhetoric.
We must work closely with the Battle Mountain group to creatively work out ways to get going now, in a way that serves both of our interests without incurring debt to the town that we can’t handle. While a recreation center is a wonderful amenity that we can look forward too, we cannot afford to have it now because the revenue streams to maintain it are not in place yet. Instead we should concentrate on upgrading our deteriorating water system including the rebuilding of Bolts Lake as a reservoir and recreational amenity. Then look to the aforementioned sidewalks and the Forest Service property to secure open space for the future benefit of all who live in and outside of Minturn.
The developer has a lot invested in this property so I believe it will be in their best interests to make the project happen. In the meantime we must continue to be as efficient as possible doing what a town government should do. The water must flow in, the sewer flow out, the potholes filled, our traffic controlled, our citizens safe, our businesses surviving.
I would appreciate your vote on April 6. If you wish to ask me any questions, please call 827-5227 before 8 p.m., and if I’m not in, please leave your number and I’ll get back to you ASAP.