Vail Daily letter: With Eagle River Station, my facts or yours? |

Vail Daily letter: With Eagle River Station, my facts or yours?

Frances Rolater
Eagle, CO, Colorado

It is unfortunate that in hotly debated issues, people will ignore factual information when it does not support their view. That does not make incorrect statements right, however, no matter how often they are repeated. Apparently, we need some facts about the now famous Carpenter’s Union in Missouri which has seen fit to horn in on a discussion about a mixed-use project in Eagle.

Somehow, I don’t buy that it is out of “concern” for our local carpenters, especially the non-union ones. Could the real agenda have to do with intimidation of RED Development and an attempt to “extort” money from them in future projects?

The reason that unionized carpenters were not awarded the contract for Lees Summit is simple. They were ridiculously expensive. Here is the breakdown: There were seven different bids submitted. The second bid (non-union) was 4 percent higher than the lowest bid. The third (non-union) was 5 percent higher. The third bid (also non-union) was 22 percent higher than the lowest bid.

So that takes care of the non-union bidders. What about the rest, which were all union? The fifth bidder was 38 percent higher than the lowest bid, the sixth bidder was 46 percent higher, and the seventh was a whopping 49 percent higher!

Let’s get a grip here. No builder or contractor has any kind of an obligation to accept bids that run from 38 percent to 49 percent higher than the lowest bid when there are four other lower-cost alternatives.

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RED has an excellent track record of using local trade people on projects. But they are not required to act stupidly in order to keep a union with an ax to grind off their backs.

Here’s another fact. No matter how you slice it, the $9 million that Lee’s Summit gave RED was not in addition to the $52 million they were obligated to fund. It was part of this amount. RED had already completed public infrastructure as they were bound to do, and asked for reimbursement that Lee’s Summit had originally agreed to. No bailout here! The town decided on its own to change the delivery method so that it could save $400,000 in bonding costs and get a higher return on its money, which was a smart idea.

Eagle never writes any kind of check for its public infrastructure with ERS. Local companies can compete with subs from out of town that have to feed and house workers in the mountains. If you want the work, then act like it and create a bid that works for both parties.

Don’t let an out-of-state union with an agenda feed you biased and downright false misinformation.

Frances Rolater


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