Vail Valley Voices: A quest to film the Eagle Town Board
Vail, CO, Colorado
Normally I like to write about what happened at the town of Eagle meeting from a resident’s point of view. Tuesday night’s was a good one, but I am sure both reporters who attended will cover the details just fine. So instead, I will ramble about my feelings and how disappointed I am in myself.
I feel I have failed the town of Eagle community. Because I was the face of asking for filming and making the town meetings available online, I do not believe this good idea was given adequate consideration. I say “adequate consideration” because even though at a previous meeting it was agreed with a 4-3 vote to explore it, my efforts killed further discussion.
When going door to door and asking people on the street, I found nothing but enthusiasm for the idea. Besides the county option, I actually had some other funding ideas to present along with more than 100 signatures (a half-day effort), a list of 101 reasons why a person might not be able to attend a meeting in person and, best of all, testimony from residents as to why they would be excited if the town offered this service.
However, none of this information will be allowed to be presented to the trustees for consideration because I have previously asked too many questions regarding various issues.
I am the first to admit that I have asked questions at the podium and put in requests through the public-records process. But in reviewing my requests and the reason for them (I am happy to share with anyone), I stand behind my requests from the past year.
I must say that I do wonder if I am the first resident who has been told they cannot be on the agenda since the town has no policy on this matter. And I wonder about two arguments made by the board against the idea. One argument was that if a person has an issue they care about, we are small enough that they can attend in person.
In following that logic, I must care the most about Eagle because I attend 100 percent of the meetings. And it must also mean that only about 30 people in Eagle care about open space and wildlife impact, as that was the approximate attendance for the discussion on opening winter trails.
Of course, I say both things in jest, as I think quite a lot of people care about Eagle even if they cannot attend the meetings. I am not sure the next argument makes much since, either, but I blew the chance to present contrary information.
The second argument was that unlike the county meetings that are held during the day when people work, our meetings are held at night. I have not checked the employment section today, but I think since we live in a resort-connected community, a decent number of our residents do work at night, and unfortunately, a large number of residents have two jobs that cover both day and night.
So although there was new information presented (different from what I had in writing) that there might be some costs to filming the meetings, I still believe it is a consideration worthy of the town’s time and money and that it should have been an open-discussion item with public input. But the board determines the policy, and its policy is that it does not want to see the meetings filmed.
My policy is that I look at the positives. Since I am fairly sure I will have more questions, I can at least be happy there will be no cameras adding 10 pounds to my butt when I approach the podium.
And speaking of adding 10 pounds, the holiday season can do that. The holiday season also can wreak havoc on schedules, so check out the town’s website for information on the upcoming meetings.
See ya’all at Town Hall!
Brandi Resa is an Eagle resident.
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