Vail Daily letters to the editor | VailDaily.com

Vail Daily letters to the editor

Vail Daily staff
Vail, CO, Colorado

Turner for DA

I’ve been on the board of the Victim Impact Panel since 1994. The panel is made up of people who are victims of drunken drivers, sometimes the drunken drivers themselves.

Everyone convicted of driving drunk in Eagle County is sentenced to appear at a panel and listen to our victims’ stories about how drunken driving has affected their lives.

Our panel started over 20 years ago, when a young mother of a brand new baby lost her life to a drunken driver. Our mission is to educate the citizens of Eagle County about the damaging effects of drunken driving.

Six years ago I went to Scott Turner, asking if he could help with a surprise mock trial at Eagle Valley High School. Mr. Turner jumped at the chance to do something for our children in educating them on the dangers of drunken driving and the ripple affect it has on families. It took six years to finally get the mock trial off the ground, and we were able to pull it off with the support of Eagle Valley High School, Eagle County Sheriffs Office and the Eagle County district attorneys last April.

I’m asking for you to support Scott Turner for district attorney. When I came to him a year ago for another try at putting on the mock trial, his office had a very high-profile trial ahead of them, but educating our students to keep them safe was also a top priority.

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With his help and two other DAs, we pulled it off. We had the attention of the entire high school body. Scott and his fellow attorneys had over 700 students watching and participating in our trial. This man is dedicated to making our community a safer place for us, our children and grandchildren.

Barb Schierkolk

Member of the Board of the Victim Impact Panel, past president of the Eagle County Board of Education

About that Constitution

I enjoyed Henry Bornstein’s Aug. 16 “Valley Voices.” It was a pleasure to read someone quoting an actual Supreme Court decision to support his point of view of the Constitution.

Then I got treated to Michael Cacioppo’s response on Aug. 22. Cacioppo repeatedly called Bornstein an “elitist,” apparently his word for anyone who bothers to demonstrate that they actually know what they are talking about.

Cacioppo also uses the term “argumentum ad hominem” incorrectly, implying that Bornstein had attacked Dick Gustafson’s character, when in fact Bornstein only addressed himself to what Gustafson had written.

My favorite sentence in Cacioppo’s column was this: “Bornstein actually believes that court precedents, which are not described in our Constitution or granted to the courts … grant them the ability to overturn, willy-nilly, the plain-spoken words of our Constitution.”

I got out my copy of the Constitution and read Article III, which said: “Section 1. The judicial power of the United States shall be vested in one Supreme Court, and in such inferior Courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish …. Section 2. (1) The judicial power shall extend to all Cases, in Law and Equity, arising under this Constitution, the Laws of the United States, and Treaties made …”

How Cacioppo thinks the judicial power should operate, if not by case law and precedent, beats the daylights out of me.

Can he imagine 200 years of the courts revisiting each constitutional issue anew with no reference to precedent? Our legal system would be chaotic, unless you think, as Cacioppo apparently does, that the correct decision in every case is obvious.

Mr. Cacioppo, if the founding fathers had thought that constitutional interpretation was perfectly obvious, they would not have set up a court of law to try adversarial cases in order to interpret it.

By the way, just to forestall an ad hominem attack on me as an elitist, I didn’t go to an Ivy League school.

Cynthia Lepthien

Eagle

Concerned about school site

My name is Stephanie Kelly and my husband is Lance Kelly. We live with our 4- and 2-year-old children in Canyon Run in Avon as full-time residents. Our 4-year-old will start school in the fall of 2013 and, conveniently located, quality schooling is top of our list in the coming year and on.

The subject of this letter is the lawsuit Traer Creek-Village at Avon has filed against Avon, and its concurrent, related massive zoning and land use permission grab. Specifically, I would like to focus on the development’s obligation to provide a 7.3 acre school site.

First, understand that there are two problem parcels of land in the Traer Creek-Village at Avon development. One is a funny finger of property way to the east of everything else, separated by another parcel of federal open space land, across the river from the old Paddy’s.

This finger of land juts up so steeply that the Planning and Zoning Board said last Tuesday that they didn’t even want roads cut into it because of the required 25-foot retaining walls. In addition to the aesthetic devastation, the town would ultimately bear the financial burden of maintaining these engineering projects accessing the finger.

To fulfill half of his school land obligation, the developer wants to give the town another burdensome parcel, a partially steep lot that is bound by the railroad, Post Boulevard, and E. Beaver Creek Boulevard. The developer overlooked state agency guidelines which discourage positioning buildings full of children over major natural gas transmission lines, which this lot features.

The other issue, which is really more of a community problem, is that pickup and drop-off times will involve a number of cars that will inevitably block the road.

Needless to say, the Planning and Zoning Commission unanimously turned down the aforementioned school site offerings. This is an ideal time for the community to come together and ask for what we want.

The Eagle County Board of Education, the Stone Creek Charter School and the town should get together, proactively identify a parcel and ask for it.

We must demand one flat-land school site of 7.3 acres adjoining 4 park acres, as the planning commission has suggested.

The charter school and the public school must share this land to enjoy exciting economies of utilization. They can stagger start times and use one driveway and parking area. They will use some of the fields on the park, and the park will be enhanced by the adjoining school facilities. The schools will share some programs. It will be a fabulous campus that will enhance the developer’s property values.

Given the outstanding and problematic issues listed above, the Planning and Zoning Commission should recommend that the Avon Town Council deny Traer Creek’s final planned unit development application as it stands now.

Stephanie and Lance Kelly

Avon

No need to worry?

Wow! I just read Jim Cameron’s rambling letter. Of course, rambling is necessary when you have to cover all Dem talking points in one letter.

Now I am so relieved, just when I thought there were serious problems with Medicare, $16 trillion national debt growing at $1trillion per year, 23-plus million Americans unemployed and looking at falling into a recession – all of which would appear to need a serious debate to get to solutions to solve.

But now I know that our empty suit, do nothing, MIA President Obama has us on the right path. If only that evil Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan would pay more taxes, then all the above problems would just go away, and Obama could play even more golf.

Life is good! In fact, no need for me to worry, as Obama has it all taken care of. In fact, I think I’ll go play golf. Jim, you want to play with me!

Gene Henry

Vail

Keep working on this plan

We are property owners in the Stonebridge Association on Eaglebend Drive in Avon who are pro development and progress in the Village at Avon and Traer Creek Metro District. Our interest is in bettering our community, quality of life and property values.

Avon is the center of the Vail Valley. It sets the tone for many tourists, families and second-home owners. Any development that goes in will define the character for the valley for many years to come.

We are now in the unique position to have a voice to create a beautiful, relaxing, enjoyable community. Anything short of this goal is an affront to the valley, the locals and the presence we should promote in the ski and summer communities.

We urge the Avon Town Council to vote to deny Traer Creek’s final planned unit development application as it stands now until the developer presents us with a clear picture of what their intent is.

This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to create a wonderful town of Avon that is the heart and soul of the Vail Valley. Let’s step up to the plate and hit a grand slam rather than settle for a strike out.

Mary Bochain and Paul Maloney

Reject this application

I am a taxpaying citizen of Avon, and I am requesting that Avon deny the Traer Creek final development plan application. It does not meet the full requirements and is another attempt to push through unwanted and under-regulated development at the final hour.

The last development plan by Traer Creek is a dismal failure, and I’m not talking about the big boxes.

Nina Stephens

Avon

Bump the bikes

I am extremely disappointed with Vail Daily’s coverage of the demolition derby this year! With what looked like 3,000 fans and 30 participants, it sure looked like an event that would constitute more than three pictures on the fourth page two days later.

How is it that any lame bike race sideshow can make the front cover, but a consistently sold out show (the rodeo can’t even do that) at the Eagle County Fairgrounds isn’t good enough for an article?

I’ve got an idea. Let’s put some bicyclsts in the arena with the cars. Win-win, right? Fewer bicyclists and more derby publicity.

Jared Murphy

Eagle

GOP on wrong track

Some of you may believe that curtailing contraception and eliminating abortions will please God, but you should also understand that those actions are not necessarily in the best interests of our nation.

As of now, 73 percent of black children, 53 percent of Hispanic children and 29 percent of white children are born to single mothers. Those facts should certainly concern us, for although some of those children will be raised by two parents living together, far too many will not. And a great deal of data tells us that children from single-parent homes are far more likely to drop out of school, far more likely to join gangs and far more likely to wind up in prison.

Unfortunately, the religious leaders who espouse the “traditional family” and/or abstinence are having little success. And so although contraceptives and abortions have not solved the problem, curtailing or eliminating them will most certainly make it worse.

When we consider the disadvantages to our nation associated with poorly educated children, as well as the costs associated with criminal activity, perhaps we should be stressing family planning and encouraging – not eliminating – the use of safe and legitimate birth control procedures.

Not only are the GOP platform, Mr. Romney and Mr. Ryan at odds with that, they also happen to be advocating big, intrusive government.

David Le Vine

Avon

Should have led paper

Vail Daily, I will give you the benefit of the doubt with this. In the Aug. 25 paper, why was the death of Karen Elizalde not front page news?

Why did the article seem so callous to such a shocking and terrible thing? Did I miss earlier coverage of this?

I thought such a tragedy would warrant more dedication from a community paper, and I want to know why it did not. Thank you.

Matt Luczkow

Eagle