Vail Daily letter: Government needs rules |

Vail Daily letter: Government needs rules

To Alan Cohen’s, letter to the editor in the Feb. 21 edition:

Wow! They didn’t follow “the goofy, petty rules that they were unaware of,” and “this is laughable”

The rules are the first thing you learn when you are elected to any public office. Without rules the protection of the public interest is avoided and outside interests can buy, build, modify and generally do whatever they want. Who needs rules?

Government needs rules for the protection of the public good. Things like air quality, water quality, land use, density, parking, lighting, drainage and general impacts of a development need to meet all kinds of rules.

Rules that govern how a public employee, even mayors and council members, talk, who they talk to, what they say, and when they can say it are rules to keep public employees from being an advocate for a private party while doing their public work. Ethics in business and in government should be the same but as Mr. Cohen points out, private business sees rules a “goofy, petty and laughable.”

Of course, private developers don’t need rules other than those that protect their bottom line.

If I can sway a public official to my way of thinking when I want to bring a development to a town or city, it would make it a lot easier to have those that control the decisions on that development on my side and pushing petty rules out of the way for my success.

I am not surprised by Mr. Cohen’s comments; at least he is honest about what he thinks. The public officials that deny that a trip to meet with Cohen was nothing to do with what Mr. Cohen wants — this is what is laughable.

Bill Gray

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