Will Zulauf

Small-town politics

Interesting article (in the Times-Call -FRL) Dec. 18 on nonpartisan council election. I moved here in 1963. Nothing has changed. In the old days the city’s old guard, Republican Party and Longmont Realtors Association controlled city government.

My first experience with city government was the zoning of the land between 17th and 19th avenues, Oligarchy on the west and railroad on the east. Land was to be R-1, then the word got out, R-5. At council the motion was R-2, passed so fast we didn’t get to ask what R-2 is.

Ken Bickers, the political science professor quoted in the article, said he “loves local politics.” It would be interesting if Ken would study the election four years ago when the old guard lost the city 4-3. How did this happen? Two years ago the council changed back 4-3. Did the Realtors buy a seat on council with a $5,000 donation in one race? Outside money was an influence in this election.

The election two months ago gave the old guard and their groups a 5-2 vote.

Another interesting study would be the party registrations of the 22 appointments to the housing task force. I’ll bet that only a couple of Democrats were appointed. Small-town politics still exists. Money still talks in elections at all levels.