Letters to the editor
The Crossroads decision by the present Town Council has energized the quiet majority. The ferocity of many of the letters to the editor has surprised even me. But this new involvement is very good to see. This is what the town of Vail needs. We need our citizens to take part in the process. And when the process goes horribly astray, as it did with Crossroads, we need to voice our opinions and actually do something about the problem. We have a great opportunity coming up on Nov. 8 to change the Town Council and to send a message to the power brokers of this town that the full-time residents strongly believe it is time for change. I am running for Town Council to help bring about this transformation. It is one thing to sit back and promote our “Billion Dollar Renewal.” But just spending money on new buildings and cobblestones is not the change that the residents of Vail want. Nor will it work if it isn’t accompanied by a leadership renewal. Don’t get me wrong, we desperately needed this face lift. But we need so much more. We need to make sure Vail remains a “real” ski town. We are a municipality, not a gated community or private adult playground. If you are looking for a private club, go to Minturn and look up. We are tired of our political representatives only representing their self-interest and the interests of those who are able to get invited to the exclusive cocktail parties. We want our leaders to be responsive to our needs and to listen to the will of the voters. We want them to share our progressive vision. We want them to offer creative solutions to the problems this community faces. We want them to look toward building a better future for Vail and not to always be looking back at “the good old days.” In short, we want our leaders to move the town forward in a responsible manner that recognizes and respects the past but isn’t afraid of the future. When we voted for the conference center, we didn’t authorize the town to collect taxes to further study the feasibility of a municipal conference center. We said build it now. The Town Council didn’t listen to us then. The Crossroads decision is further evidence that they aren’t listening to us now. It is time for a change.I don’t know about you, but when I have to drive to Avon to go swimming with my son, it upsets me. I live in Vail, and we have no public swimming pool or rec center. But Avon does. What’s wrong with this picture? This, too, needs to change.I am just a working family man who is running for Town Council to try and bring some common sense back to the governing of this town. My wife, Tracy, and I moved here five years ago. Immediately we knew this was home. We believe Vail is a great place to raise our 2-year-old son, Sasha. But I want to make sure it remains a great place for Sasha and his peers to grow up. I firmly believe that if we keep Vail a great place for our children, then Vail will always be successful. As a Town Council member, I will be available to chat with you about the issues or the ski conditions. And I will always respect your intelligence and opinions. Of course we might not agree on every issue. But I will always make sure you understand why I’m taking a certain position. And I will do my best to understand your side of the discussion.I strongly believe the Town Council must be fiscally responsible with our money. But I also believe that the government of Vail is here to help improve the quality of life of its citizens. And by improving the quality of life of its citizens, the quality of life of all members of our community (part-time residents, business owners, and guests) will improve. Our future can be very bright if we work together to bring about the physical renewal of the town’s appearance, as well as a deeper renewal of attitude and leadership. I am asking for your support this Nov. 8 because I sincerely believe that we, the residents of Vail, deserve a better Town Council. We need a change in leadership so that Vail can start to realize its full potential as a community and a resort. Please join me in helping to shape Vail’s future. You can e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org to further discuss any issues that you would like to see addressed. I’m also listed in the phone book. Feel free to give me a call. I look forward to continuing this conversation with you. Mark GordonVailSeibert PlazaThe Alpine Ski Championships are naturally important events among ski resorts around the world. In the early 1980s, Peter Seibert, Richard Kaplan, our town manager, Rod Slifer, John Horan-Kates, Willy Schaeffler, coach of the U.S. Ski Team, and others visited Saint Moritz in Switzerland and established an official contact with the world-renowned ski resort.Through the following years, our contacts with Reto Melcher, their buergermeister, appointed for life and representative of the International Ski Federation (FIS), grew to the point that in the mid-’80s, Vail and Saint Moritz became sister cities.In 1989, we backed each other for the World Cup, and Vail, from all the resorts around the world, was chosen to host the World Alpine Championships, and again in 1999.Peter Seibert loved Switzerland and fondly remembered the years he had spent at the Hotel School in Lausanne. He, Peggy Osterfoss, our town manager and others were back in Saint Moritz in 1991.Now in 2005, I believe our mayor and friend of Saint Moritz, Rod Slifer, could further the relationship and let them know that we would like to buy a fountain from their town. They are there, small, wise, tall, etc., stone, bronze and reasonably prized. (Saint Moritz) could help us find one.It would be installed on Seibert Plaza, showing our contact with the Old World, a little history, a destination point for tourists and a plug for Saint Moritz. A plaque or rock carving could say “To Peter Seibert, founder of Vail, from our sister city, Saint Moritz.”Pete and I became friends when I moved to Vail in January of 1963, and Daphne, my wife, eventually became his personal secretary. We know that not only would Pete like the fountain, but he would be proud of it.PS: Even if cold winter months would prevent the fountain from flowing, it would still be a worthy memorial to Pete.Jim SlevinUltimate sharingRe: “Always playing superhero,” Aug. 25: If more people were as generous as Chris and Susan Spiegel, we wouldn’t have over 6,000 Americans dying every year waiting for organ transplants. Most of these deaths are needless. Americans bury or cremate about 20,000 transplantable organs every year.There is a simple solution to the organ shortage – give organs first to people who have agreed to donate their own organs when they die.Giving organs first to organ donors will convince more people to register as organ donors. It will also make the organ allocation system fairer. About 70 percent of the organs transplanted in the United States go to people who haven’t agreed to donate their own organs when they die. People who aren’t willing to share the gift of life shouldn’t be eligible for transplants as long as there is a shortage of organs.Anyone who wants to donate their organs to others who have agreed to donate theirs can join LifeSharers. LifeSharers is a non-profit network of organ donors who agree to offer their organs first to other organ donors when they die. They do this through a form of directed donation that is legal in all 50 states and under federal law. Anyone can join for free at http://www.lifesharers.com. LifeSharers has 3,204 members, including 52 members in Colorado.David J. UndisExecutive DirectorLifeSharerswww.lifesharers.com Miller for president I am impressed with Vail Daily Assistant Managing Editor Alex Miller’s column on “How to win the war on terror.” If you missed it, check out the Saturday, Aug. 27 issue of the Daily, page A15. His five points are clearly stated, comprehensive, sensible, and serve the best interests of America for both the short and long term. I would urge everyone to read it! Dave Mott Wolcott
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