Longmont

McCoy Praises Baum

 

According to the Times-Call on Tuesday, Firestone has offered to put a park and a trail corridor on its disputed border with Longmont.

Mayor Bryan Baum said in response, “I don’t have any comment, because I really can’t comment.  I think it’s very improper to talk about private conversations with regard to negotiations, especially when we’re under the veil of lawsuits.”

At the Council Comment portion of Tuesday’s city council meeting, Councilmember Sean McCoy thanked Mayor Baum for his negotiating efforts with Firestone.  He went on to say that this demonstrated that Longmont was negotiating in good faith with Firestone but the same could not be said of Mayor Chad Auer and Firestone.

Matters discussed in executive session, whether in Longmont or in Firestone, are to remain private.  Surely Mayor Auer knows that.  It begs the question, what does Firestone hope to gain by making a public “offer”  before any agreement has been reached?   Was this arrogant, stupid, or a negotiating maneuver to force a compromise not in Longmont’s best interest?

LifeBridge withdrew its Longmont annexation application in December 2007 when it faced a special election loss following an historic referendum that gathered over 6,000 signatures in response to the Pirnack council’s approval of the application.   LifeBridge then peddled its project to communities in the Tri-Town area.  Only Firestone had an interest in the project.

Firestone’s demonstrated hostility towards Longmont dates back to the days when Mike Simone was its mayor.  The Simone Board of Trustees hurried through an expansion of its comprehensive planning area to enable annexation of the Fairview/Firelight project and the LifeBridge project.  It then sought to use State Highway 119 as a flagpole to annex the two projects.  Responding to a defensive action by the City of Longmont, the Simone Board passed under so-called “emergency” conditions an alternate annexation avenue for the LifeBridge development using County Road 26

These annexation attempts resulted in two lawsuits.  Firestone lost the lawsuit over the annexation attempt using County Road 26 with the court ruling that it had no standing.  The lawsuit over the flagpole annexation along State Highway 119 remains on appeal.

Good Stewards of the Earth

(read at PITBH by Marilyn Decker)

January 27,2010

Marilyn Decker 2010 Public Invited To Be Heard

Dear Mayor Baum and City Council Members,

In keeping with the mission statement of the Peace, Justice and Whole Earth Ministry of First Congregational United Church of Christ of Longmont, we, the undersigned, wish to urge that the land surrounding Union Reservoir in Longmont be exempt from such heavy usage as proposed by Heaven Fest and the Kinetics events.

We are not opposed to the events themselves, but to the Union Reservoir location. Our concern is the environmental impact that 50,000 people and the accompanying cars would have on an area inhabited by bald eagles, many other birds, and small animals that depend on undisturbed land for their habitat. Let us all be good stewards ofthe earth, living in harmony with the environment and showing respect for the land that we share.

Perhaps another place designed for large crowds, such as Boulder County Fairgrounds or Main Street, could be used for these events and then the prospective revenue could still be received by Longmont.

Thank you for your consideration of this matter.

Mission Statement of Peace, Justice and Whole Earth Ministry

Adopted January, 2007

We acknowledge that peace, justice and care for the whole earth is God’s plan for all creation in that our world has finite resources. As God offers all people the special gift of peace through Jesus Christ, we are called to deal justly with one another and the earth, for there is no peace without justice.

As stewards ofthe earth, we are called to be a caring people, living in harmony with the environment, respecting and honoring the gifts of God’s creation with gratitude for all that we have received.

Knowing that future generations depend upon us, we seek opportunities to make a significant impact and difference on social and environmental issues in the home, church, community, state and world through education, worship, and specific projects.

(51 signatures follow, not reproduced)

Split Estate – Friday 6:30pm – Firehouse 5

Courtesy of “Split Estate”, Red Rock Pictures

http://www.splitestate.com/

Split Estate will screen this Friday, February 12th, at 6:30 P.M. in the Community Room of Longmont Firehouse #5 at Airport and Nelson Roads.

Director Debra Anderson will be present to answer audience questions following the screening.

Split Estate is a compelling documentary that maps a tragedy in the making, as citizen in the path of the new drilling boom in Colorado and the Rocky Mountain West struggle against the erosion of their civil liberties, their communities and their health.

Close to home, hydraulic fracturing, or fracing as it is frequently known, is occurring on farmland east of Union Reservoir and Longmont .

“Split Estate is a moving portrait that highlights important questions regarding the safety of hydraulic fracturing near our local communities.”

U.S. Representative Diana DeGette, Colorado

Ridgeview Tel Enters Greener House Contest

From PRWeb:

RidgeviewTel First Team to Enter Smarter, Safer, Greener House Contest

DaVinci Quest announced that RidgeviewTel, a leading manager of wireless broadband networks, is the first Team to enter its green building renovation innovation competition.

Centennial, CO (PRWEB) February 11, 2010 — DaVinci Quest is producing an open international innovation competition on the subject of green building renovation in the City of Longmont, Boulder County, Colorado, United States. Today, DaVinci Quest announced that RidgeviewTel has agreed to enter the Smarter, Safer, Greener House Contest as a Team.

“We are pleased to have this opportunity to advance innovation toward the goal of reducing energy consumption, increasing the efficiency of information transfers and improving our environment,” said Vince Jordan, President and CEO of RidgeviewTel. “Since our company is based here in Longmont, we feel compelled to be part of this unique contest which benefits not only everyone within our City, but gives Longmont a platform to reach much further.”

The RidgeviewTel Team will be a collaboration of individuals and businesses with different areas of expertise that can address each of the Contest outcome criteria. DaVinci Quest will facilitate identification of team members and support RidgeviewTel in building its Team.

Karl Dakin, CEO of DaVinci Quest, stated “We believe that RidgeviewTel will be a great Team in our Contest and represents the kind of Team that will do well by organizing and orchestrating all of the skills needed to perform well.”

RidgeviewTel is a communications company based in Longmont, Colorado, composed of several different business lines that, together successfully engineer, construct, deliver and manage converged broadband services via wireless and wireline technologies.

Read the rest at PRWeb

Who let the dogs out?

Recent articles in the Denver Post and Gazette Telegraph talk about the growing problem that packs of wild dogs are having on citizens just east of Colorado Springs.  Seems anyone from school children to delivery drivers fear for their safety as packs as large as a hundred strays roam the countryside at will.

And that’s not all..

Last Sunday, The Denver Post highlighted the tax and infrastructure problems that continue to plague Colorado Springs.  As a result, the city is making deep cuts that will further trim the police and fire services in town. El Paso County sheriffs deputies  are short staffed and the County Humane society is under funded.  Fearful citizens have little recourse in dealing with dog attacks, let alone crime in the city.

The Post article goes on to say that  the Springs will turn off street lights to save money.  Park lawns will be allowed to turn brown this summer.  Trash cans in city parks will be removed.  Residents will be urged to pack out their own trash. Citizens are urged to bring out their own lawnmowers to cut grass in the common boulevards. Museums and other cultural services will be shut down.

Damaged roads will be allowed  to go without repair and on, and on, and on.  Sure, all municipalities are facing tough times, but really, turning off street lights?

I lived in the Springs, and left in 1990 when the population for the county was hovering at about 400,000.  The population is now about 600,000.  If you travel east and north of town, you see endless cookie cutter developments housing many of the new residents.  The tax base is there, but old conservative attitudes from the Springs military underpinnings are further fueled by the huge anti-tax Evangelical influx in the last twenty years.  Don’t forget, Doug Bruce lives there too. This didn’t just happen, it has been years in the making.

The Springs is turning into a pit.  It’s eastern developments look allot like the developments east if I-25 in Weld County.  No character, and probably the next ghetto in about twenty years.  The Northern Black Forest area in El Paso County is nice, but that’s where many Evangelicals, including many Focus on the Family members live.

Check out the home page for New Life Church and you see that they have over two dozen paid ministers.  Many of them live in the Black Forest area, and in very nice homes…As I write this, Focus on the Family is highlighting it’s million dollar ads on the Super Bowl to present it’s point of view.  I’m sure the poorer residents of Colorado Springs could use that money to light their streets at night.

I’m chewing on an old bone here, but Lifebridge, Rocky Mountain Christian, and the coming Heaven Fest are developments we cannot afford.  These are dogs the citizens of boulder county should keep penned up!

So nice…

They are good people, God-fearing, patriarchal, mostly conservative, and on questions of authority, ask, “What does the Bible say?”  Who are these good folk, and why should they concern the residents of Northern Colorado?

They are LifeBridge Christian Church in Longmont, Johnstown and Frederick, and Rocky Mountain Christian Church of Niwot and Frederick. They are supported by several thousand members, and many powerful and wealthy people in Longmont and surrounding areas as well as Longmont’s only newspaper.

They continue to support a growing influence on local politics as evidenced by the recent city elections in Longmont.  They have recently won a million dollar lawsuit against Boulder County to expand their church in Niwot.  They will be building a small Christian city just east of Longmont.

They will be supporting a major Christian rock festival that by their own estimates, could bring tens of thousands of Christians to Union Reservoir in Longmont, on July 31 of this year.

So?

They are Dominionists, seeking influence or control over secular civil government through political action—aiming either at a nation governed by Christians, or a nation governed by a conservative Christian understanding of Bibical Law.

And so?

They will be fruitfull and multiply, embracing unlimited growth, enriching their developers, and destroying open space.

They will teach their children Christian values, history, and science in Christian schools, or at home.  Public schools with a “liberal agenda,” will wither on the vine.

They will pass laws that will endanger or destroy the rights of those who hold to secular values and lifestyles.  They are relentless in their quest for a shining city on a hill.  Best of all, it’s tax free.

Think it can’t happen in Boulder as it is beginning to in Niwot and Longmont?  Look no further south than Colorado Springs, the Evangelical Vatican.

Welcome to Psycho Talk

They're grim alright

Pay or else

In an effort to try and understand the ‘thinking’ of Longmont’s far right, we present some  quotes:

If you fail to pay your doctor bill or your credit card bill or your cell phone bill, the doctor’s office or cell phone company or bank doesn’t come around with guns to collect.

If you fail to pay a tax (property, sales, etc, etc, etc) men with guns come to you to either take your property by force of arms or throw you in jail for non-payment.

LC4Freedom, longmont, co, 2/1/2010 5:27 PM (Source: Times-Call)


Uh huh…

…and what else do the rice krispies say?

Photos from Council 02-02-2010

Special shout out to Gabe, Katie and Alex who made sure I knew which was their good side. You know, it’s funny… but every picture does tell a story!

[flickr-gallery mode=”photoset” photoset=”72157623347527526″]

CAN YOU HEAR US NOW?

Can You Hear Us NOW?

Listen up Mr. Mayor

This is a second update to an earlier article.

This poll question at the TimesCall:

The Longmont City Council offers two “public invited to heard” sessions during each regular meeting — one near the beginning of the meeting and one at the end. Mayor Bryan Baum would like to see the first public-invited segment to be limited to no more than 30 minutes. Speakers already are limited to three minutes each. Should the first public-invited session be limited, and if so, how much time should be allotted?

Looks like the Times-Call finally closed the Limits to Public Invited To Be Heard poll.

Here’s the final results:

(click to enlarge images)

Final tally: 500 votes (not bad based on other polls)

Ratio of ‘No Limits’ to the (obviously hoped-for) 30-minute limit?

3:1 – ouch

I do believe that’s a very, Very, VERY clear statement that the public disagrees with the Mayor about limiting free speech. (and his effort to ‘walk it back’ fooled no one)

So maybe our glorious new mayor should think before he voices his inner thoughts about the public’s right to free speech and ‘stewardship’ since it’s pretty clear he doesn’t have much of a clue about either of them.


Here’s the previous poll results:

Here’s how the voting looked two days ago:

Times call poll as of Jan 29, 2010 at 1:00 AM MDT

Click images to enlarge


Now it’s late in the day sunday Jan 31 and more folks have expressed their opinion:

The number of total votes has gone up from

262 to 376 (over 40% more votes)

114 more citizens spoke up (which is great to see)

click images to enlarge

The opposition to limiting Public Invited To Be Heard to a 30 minute limit compared to no limit has grown from 3:1 to 3.2:1 (look at the charts and you can see the jump:

Samples from 1/29 and 1/31 – note the increase in scale on the charts (click images to enlarge)

I think it’s pretty obvious, even from this admittedly-nonscientific poll, that the people who are paying attention really don’t agree with the idea of limiting Public Invited To Be Heard and suggestions to that effect are not welcome by the public. Any ‘good steward’ of government should be able to see this. I hope this analysis has helped provide more clarity.

KGNU Hosts Heaven Fest Discussion

On January 8th, local radio station KGNU’s “Connections” program devoted a full hour to the discussion of the Heaven Fest Christian rock concert.  The event is undergoing review for a Use Permit for Longmont property just south of Union Reservoir.  The Heaven Fest concert is to be held on July 30/31 of this year.

Hosted by Kathy Partridge, the show (“Coming to a Reservoir Near You?”) featured Longmont activist and former city council candidate Kaye Fissinger and environmental attorney Judy Lubow.  Both Fissinger and Lubow oppose using sensitive land and wildlife habitat around Union Reservoir for an event that promises to attract at least 30,000 people and perhaps as many as 50,000.

Doug Bene, Longmont Economic Development Manger, and Gary Wheat, Executive Director of the Longmont Area Visitors Association were also invited.  Both men would have been able to present the economic rationale in support of this event, but each declined to participate in the program.  Luke Bodley of Heaven Fest also declined to participate.

While Ms. Partridge performed well in her role as Devil’s Advocate, it would have been beneficial to the Longmont community to hear more detail from these perspectives.  If, in fact, the event truly offers the benefits claimed, one would have expected that Bene, Wheat and Bodley would have welcomed the opportunity to share information with the public.

“Connections” is also a call-in show and this program generated considerable public interest and comment.  Callers presented a range of observations and frank comments about the proposed event.  Calls came not only from Longmont, but from Mead, Louisville and Boulder and further away from Ward and Bailey.

The program is archived on the KGNU website and can be found at

http://kgnu.net/audio/Connections_2010-01-08.mp3 (.mp3, 57Mb)

And a trimmed down mono version with just the interview and comments here (.mp3, 25Mb).

Opposition to limits on free speech grows

This is an update to an earlier article.

This poll question at the TimesCall:

The Longmont City Council offers two “public invited to heard” sessions during each regular meeting — one near the beginning of the meeting and one at the end. Mayor Bryan Baum would like to see the first public-invited segment to be limited to no more than 30 minutes. Speakers already are limited to three minutes each. Should the first public-invited session be limited, and if so, how much time should be allotted?

Here’s how the voting looked two days ago:

Times call poll as of Jan 29, 2010 at 1:00 AM MDT

Click images to enlarge


Now it’s late in the day sunday Jan 31 and more folks have expressed their opinion:

The number of total votes has gone up from

262 to 376 (over 40% more votes)

114 more citizens spoke up (which is great to see)

click images to enlarge

The opposition to limiting Public Invited To Be Heard to a 30 minute limit compared to no limit has grown from 3:1 to 3.2:1 (look at the charts and you can see the jump:

Samples from 1/29 and 1/31 – note the increase in scale on the charts (click images to enlarge)

I think it’s pretty obvious, even from this admittedly-nonscientific poll, that the people who are paying attention really don’t agree with the idea of limiting Public Invited To Be Heard and suggestions to that effect are not welcome by the public. Any ‘good steward’ of government should be able to see this. I hope this analysis has helped provide more clarity.

Longmont’s mayor opposes free speech

Longmont mayor Bryan Baum

Longmont mayor Bryan Baum. Photo by MDWray. ©2010 all rights reserved.

It seems Mayor Baum has decided he doesn’t like to hear from the public – at least not when they don’t agree with him. At the end of the City Council retreat on Saturday he announced he wants to change the way “Public Invited to be Heard” is handled at the weekly City Council meetings. He wants to limit the entire process to 30 minutes because he thinks “it’s ridiculous to have to listen for an hour and a half.” Does this tell you something about the attitude of our new mayor? I guess he thinks Democracy is only worth 30 minutes. And if the other council members don’t agree with him? He’s threatening to move it to the end of the council meeting with the closing phrase

“I’m the mayor and it’s up to me. I can set this up any way I want.” Very chilling.

I find the timing of this decision very interesting as it falls right on the heels of a council meeting in which many people directed criticism toward Baum for a variety of things. (The other half were there to speak for or against the red light cameras). I guess Baum has decided that the best way to keep the criticism down is to shut down free speech at public meetings. That’s one way to do it. The other would be to govern with integrity and honesty and accountability.

Majority of Longmonters reject free speech limits

This poll question at the TimesCall:

The Longmont City Council offers two “public invited to heard” sessions during each regular meeting — one near the beginning of the meeting and one at the end. Mayor Bryan Baum would like to see the first public-invited segment to be limited to no more than 30 minutes. Speakers already are limited to three minutes each. Should the first public-invited session be limited, and if so, how much time should be allotted?

Times call poll as of Jan 29, 2010 at 1:00 AM MDT

Times call poll as of Jan 29, 2010 at 1:00 AM MDT

Here’s the results as of 1:00 AM.

Pretty clear the mayor was unwise to even suggest limiting Public Invited to Be Heard.

These next two charts, from data collected from 9:30 AM – 1:45 PM show the ratios throughout the polling period:

(Click charts to enlarge)

In the end, after 262 votes were cast and from start to finish the average ratio of people that chose no limits to Public Invited to Be Heard was a steady 56%. Note that at 1:00 AM, the total of people choosing any limit (combining all three choices) in the poll was 113 while the number choosing no limits was 149.

Note that the final ratio of the smallest limit (30 minutes) to no limit voters was 52 / 149 – almost three to one.

There, plain as day, is the stony hard core of an ideology that would declare a permanent majority and crucify the principles of Democracy on the cross of opportunism.

Caucus is coming up.

Get busy.

All Will be Watching

Longmont Mayor Bryan Baum, 2010

It didn’t go without notice that Mayor Baum backed off from earlier comments that he made about major changes to Public Invited to be Heard (PITBH). His comments were encouraging in that he promised that there is “no way we will ever try to mute the public.” However, I do have some concern because he also said that “any changes will be carefully looked at.”

So here’s the dilemma, will Mayor Baum actually NOT mute the public or will he mute them LATER after the furor has died down?

I hope the matter is settled and no changes in PITBH will occur – or other actions that would have the effect of suppressing public comment and opinion. The right, left and center of Longmont will be watching. One thing most of us do have in common is the value we place on free speech.

Unfortunately, some of Mayor Baum’s strongest cheerleaders have a demonstrated tepid value of same. That, too, has not gone unnoticed. More on that in other venues.