Water plan
As a 19-year-old who grew up in the Roaring Fork Valley and deeply appreciates the importance of water in all of our lives, I couldn’t help but notice that Colorado is revising the state’s water plan. While the Colorado Water Conservation Board recognizes the dire importance of water in our lives — their work protecting the Crystal River watershed is instrumental — there are notable areas for improvement and clarity. 

My passion for water is motivated by the humbling sensation of watching the crashing waves of the Crystal and Roaring Fork Rivers, driven by Colorado’s powder fields. 

However, Colorado’s current drought has lowered snowpack and water levels. My family, like so many others on the Western Slope, depends on tourism driven by high snowpacks and full rivers. That multi-billion-dollar economy is a defining characteristic of our beautiful state and requires clear, well-defined water management goals to continue thriving. 

Low-income workers lay at the bedrock of the recreation economy. Their work is one of the most crucial pillars of the success of the industry, but it too often goes unnoticed and unappreciated. They are the groups that often feel the brunt of floods, wildfires and droughts. In order to sustain our thriving recreation economy, it is crucial to clearly outline who will ensure the plan’s attention to equity. 

Implicit in the strength of the recreation industry is a healthy ecosystem. Fish, wildlife and plants suffer considerable damage from a lack of water and inadequate management. As habitats fall apart, the natural environment we cherish loses its allure. The Colorado Water Plan needs to have specific and measurable goals to ensure the health of natural ecosystems, both for the animals’ sake and our own. 

While the current draft of the Colorado Water Plan recognizes water as a necessity, it needs to clearly outline goals and expectations to ensure every Coloradan has access to clean water and can sustain their families for generations to come.

Aden Berry

Rule of law
For as far back as human history, the most common form of government has been tyrants and their ruling class that freely murdered, raped, tortured, robbed and enslaved the non-ruling class. The tyrants believed their word was the law and could be changed at their whim. Life for those in the ruling class was precarious as well as they could fall out of favor at anytime, have their property seized, be tortured and executed — all at the whim of the tyrant.

For modern day examples of this tyranny, just look at Russia, China and North Korea, to name a few.

As the founding fathers did not want to replace one tyrant, King George III of England, with another homemade tyrant, they sought to institutionalize the tradition of the “rule of law” in their new government. This meant a just set of laws, as determined by the people, which are applied equally to the citizens AND the government — that no one should be above these laws.

In this way, the founding fathers believed the rule of law would act as a barrier against tyrannical and arbitrary government.

As long as there has been democracy, there have been people who believe that it needs to be overthrown and a new king, tyrant or autocrat installed. This belief is not unique to any political party, but at this point in time seems to have gained great favor among many Republicans, including Lauren Boebert, who would seemingly be glad to install Trump as our King.

Maintaining democracy and the rule of law is too important to the rest of us to let it slip away.

Jerome Dayton

Vote for Diaz
I am supporting Aron Diaz for Garfield County Treasurer. I have known Aron and his extended family for many years as he is a fourth-generation citizen of Garfield County. Aron worked on staff for my office when I served as a member of the Colorado House of Representatives for this district. 

He distinguished himself by exhaustively researching, analyzing, and delivering policy options on complex issues of importance to the district and the state. We worked closely together for the public’s interest which was always prominent in his values and desire to serve. I know well his eagerness to honestly perform the treasurer’s duties for the greatest number of citizens. 

Aron studies the work before him and capably manages the subject matter and the people involved to successfully complete projects. He has the intellect and ability to lead the office and the personnel of the treasurer’s office, professionally and competently. As importantly, he will meticulously guard the safety of the public’s resources and money. 

Finally, Aron will conduct himself and the office in a non-political, non-partisan manner as is the right way to respect the responsibility of the public’s work. Politics will not guide his choices. 

I am proud to see Aron courageously step up during these grim times for our government and democracy, to be counted on to do the right thing even in this atmosphere of rough and tumble skepticism and personal criticism of any public official. I will consider it an honor to cast my vote for Aron Diaz. I hope you will too. 

Russell George
Former Speaker of the House 
Colorado House of Representatives

Vote for Joe
Bob Braudis believed in Joe DiSalvo, and so do I. In his more than thirty-years of law enforcement work, Joey has shown himself to be highly responsive to his constituents and consistently respected by other law enforcement communities

When it became obvious that the community had outgrown the current configuration of the jail, Joey took steps to solve the problems. He brought suggestions to the county commissioners, without a preconceived notion of which solution might be best. In concert with the board of county commissioners (BoCC), he arranged for inmates to be housed temporarily at the Garfield County jail while upgrades were constructed in our own jail. Joey has worked to protect both the detention officers and the inmates. Working with the BoCC to develop an optimal justice center which aids and respects those with mental illness and provides facilities for those with addiction issues — as well as providing safe incarceration — is another expression of his commitment.

In addition, Joey has developed one of the leading law enforcement communications systems in Colorado. He has developed a staff which includes 15 bilingual employees and has worked to diversify the law enforcement department. He has managed responses to all types of events, from wildfires to homicides with alacrity and professionalism. The Sheriff’s office operates with efficiency and transparency thanks to Joey’s leadership.

Sheriff Joe DiSalvo is a humble man who operates from the heart and is quick to take responsibility for any miscues or mistakes. If you live in Pitkin County, please join me in supporting Joe DiSalvo for Sheriff.

Francie Jacober
Pitkin County Commissioner

Vote Democrat
If there is only one metric worth following, in any election, it is that truth and accuracy are paramount, if that is what you wish to be legislated with. Fear, slander and division are red flags for unknowledgeable candidates that do not respect even the constituents who elect them. Let insecure folks follow the wackadoodle news sources right into dissonant autocracy and con-spiracy. Our only job is to stay focused on electing clear thinking democrats, with the goal of regaining a vibrant democracy. VOTE!

John Hoffmann


Letter policy: Please limit your letters to 500 words. We are committed to including all perspectives in The Sopris Sun. If your letter does not appear, it may be because of space limitations in the paper or because other letters we printed expressed the same idea or point of view. Letters are due by noon on the Monday before we go to print.