Our View: Recall the Avon recall
If you’re trying to make sense of the two recalls on the ballot in Avon, don’t. This recall effort has been nonsensical from the start, and in an odd-year election where voters face important decisions up and down the ballot, a no vote on both is a no-brainer.
To be clear, Mayor Sarah Smith Hymes and Council member Tamra Underwood haven’t broken any laws, nor has either violated an oath of office or acted unethically. If you try to follow the logic of the Avon Recall Committee, this effort is a referendum on both Smith Hymes and Underwood for their council votes to relocate the Hahnewald Barn and for not eliminating the town’s real estate transfer tax.
If Smith Hymes or Underwood or the other two council members who voted for the barn relocation had actually gone ahead with that undertaking after voters resoundingly rejected the idea in a survey that mimicked an official town vote, then, sure, the recall committee might have an argument. But as Avon voters well know, Smith Hymes and Underwood respected the will of their constituents and the barn was demolished. End of story.
As for the real estate transfer tax, as Smith Hymes points out in her own response to the recall on the ballot, it has been supported by Town Councils since its inception 40 years ago, and was unanimously reaffirmed as recently as March 2019.
Why Smith Hymes and Underwood are being singled out for something that’s been a mainstay in Avon for four decades makes absolutely no sense.
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But, again, this recall makes no sense whatsoever. Its only objective is to hijack the democratic process and bully elected officials.
Avon voters should stand up and reject this kind of skullduggery in their local politics. Voters need to send a message, and a loud one, to the residents behind this effort, some of them previous losers in council elections, who are wasting valuable taxpayer funds and resources.
That message? Recalls should be used only as a last resort to remove lawmakers who have run afoul of the law or are derelict in their duties. If you don’t like the policies of elected officials, then use your time and money to run against those candidates in the next election.
That’s how a democracy works.
And that democracy is only weakened when a loud, vocal minority tries to subvert the will of the majority by clearing the low bar of forcing an unnecessary recall vote.
The town has already spent close to six figures on this recall effort — money that could have been used in so many other meaningful ways. This giant waste of town resources and taxpayer dollars has gone on long enough, and we urge Avon voters to put an end to this nonsense with their votes.
Vote no on the two Avon recalls.
The Vail Daily Editorial Board is Publisher Mark Wurzer, Editor Nate Peterson, Assistant Editor Sean Naylor, Business Editor Scott Miller and Eagle Valley Enterprise Editor Pam Boyd.