Vail Daily letter: Re-elect Shelley Bellm |

Vail Daily letter: Re-elect Shelley Bellm

Vail Daily
Vail, CO Colorado

It has been my honor and privilege to serve the citizens of Minturn throughout the past four years. I hope to continue to do this as I seek re-election on April 6. I have fought for the community and will continue to fight for the community if I am re-elected.

There isn’t only one issue facing our town this election. There is a multitude of issues that need to be addressed.

We have crumbling water infrastructure, especially in the heavily polluted ground in the railroad property. We have the funding to get this area fixed correctly, and we need to see it through. There have been problems with the monitoring of the Superfund site by the owners, CBS-Viacom, and a poor reporting system. We need to make sure we hold them responsible for ensuring our water sources are not placed in jeopardy again.

Sales tax revenues are down and, like every other neighboring community, we need to find ways to increase visitors to our town.

Our bus service needs to be increased, but if we don’t have the ridership and support from our residents, there is little we can do.

Minturn has been faced with the same turmoil as the rest of Eagle County, and there isn’t a quick fix to the economy. In order to see Minturn succeed, we need to focus on what we can do to bring visitors to our stores and restaurants. I think we can do some of this by working with the Business Association and the Minturn Community Fund to find unique events that will draw visitors to our community.

We have a beautiful new amphitheatre that offers a great mountain experience. We should be working with the organizers of the Minturn Market to bring a unique set of vendors that other markets aren’t offering.

We can’t expect that the Battle Mountain developers are going to come to our rescue, and we need to be able to plan for a Minturn without them at this time.

The developers of Battle Mountain are obligated to honor the agreements made with the town of Minturn during the annexation process. Contrary to what others may be stating, we have been working with the developer and have asked on many occasions for the release of all or a portion of the funds. In light of today’s economy, the developer and the investors aren’t willing to gamble with $11.6 million. Would you?

We have been working with the U.S. Forest Service for the purchase of land located within our town, known commonly as the Bone Yard. This piece of property is currently zoned for open space and recreation and there is no intention of placing any employee housing on this property.

We are not working with the Forest Service to develop the Martin Creek parcel for “affordable housing.” This piece of property is zoned for low- to medium-density housing. What this means to you is that it isn’t being reviewed for a 400-plus affordable-housing complex!

We have lost a gem in Minturn with the loss of Minturn Middle School! I am committed to continuing to work with the Eagle County School District in the repurposing of this building. There has been some discussion of having another educational program move to this building. There has also been a buzz in the community about the potential for this building, the fields and the park becoming a community facility. I look forward to the potential that this property has and look forward to continuing to work with the school district.

As a council, we need to work together to ensure the future success of our town. We shouldn’t need to bash current members or others seeking election, and we shouldn’t need to put fear into the minds of our residents.

There is not a reason for our residents to be fearful of any of the issues facing our community today. We have money in reserves, we haven’t had to lay-off or place any employees on furlough, our water fund has the reserves available to begin some of the infrastructure improvements that need to be made, we have not raised water rates for the citizens for the past couple of years and, most importantly, our budget is balanced.

Questions or concerns? Feel free to contact me at shelley or 970-827-4032.

Shelley Bellm, Minturn

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