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The bus doesn't just serve a small segment of the population. It is an essential and integral piece of infrastructure that has already been bought and paid for by the citizens. For the Council majority to trash it to save $100,000 constitutes gross and egregious negligence.
The bus service subsidizes low wages, enables higher profits and higher commercial rents. It does more for the ski area and the businesses and landlords in town than it does for the people who ride it.
Two years ago, Skyview Apartments, a major residential development project, was approved by Council, even though the development is woefully short on parking. The approval was predicated on the fact that it was on the bus route.
If Council still doesn't get it, then why don't they just go ahead and cancel bus service for the rest of the ski season. We'll just see who gets hurt. And why don't they lower our taxes too in order to compensate for the reduced services and the failure to properly steward millions of dollars of assets in the form of buses and infrastructure that we have already paid for.
Bart Kounovsky, the Chairman of City Council, should resign over this. He should no longer serve on Council. Leadership such as that which he has provided is detrimental to the welfare of the citizens of Steamboat Springs.. .
The bears will never leave town. They would lose the right to serve on City Council and to vote in municipal elections.
City Council's good intentions may backfire. I suggest they take a long pause, and reconsider, before implementing an expensive program just so it appears that they are doing something.
I'm afraid that the bear proof containers will only serve to teach humans that it is now okay to put smelly garbage in your container and to leave the container outside, or wheel it to the curb, any time you want. The smell alone will attract more bears, not fewer. They may not satiate their appetite from your smelly container so they will look for something else.
You're right, Scott. Those 2 sentences capture the essence of the matter. Everything else is academic.
Why should we have to live in such an oppressive atmosphere? Why did Council have to punt this matter back to staff for further study, costing taxpayers additional thousands of dollars? A quick, "back of the napkin" calculation tells you what we're going to get.
Are they planning on changing existing policies? We currently give a warning for a first offense. If we start fining every tourist who overstays the time limit, they will go home with an expensive and unpleasant memory, but we will not have succeeded in freeing up any more parking spaces.
And those dreaded "shufflers", the modern day boogeymen of downtown, are not violating any existing laws.
This license plate reading, recording, and photographing device may be all about the National Security State, and only nominally about parking. The Federal government has proven itself extremely adept at vacuuming up lots of personal data, and extremely poor at analyzing it.
Could the current frenzy to immediately build a large, expensive, state of the art police station, when it was, until recently, languishing way down near the bottom of our list of possible future capital expenditures, be similarly motivated?
Anyplace I ever lived, flashing headlights meant there is a speed trap up ahead.
Thanks for reminding people about that important piece of history and for providing a link to the New York Times article.
One problem that the proponents of a payment system never address is the amount of extra time it would take if each passenger had to pay 25 or 50 cents, or swipe a debit card, every time they got on the bus. The recent decision to eliminate the Mustang Run stop was made to cut mere seconds off the route. It did not eliminate any distance. (Fortunately it has been reinstated.) Has the editorial board thought about the time required to collect individual fares and the overhead and expense of administering such a system?
I find that the creeping Surveillance State already impairs my freedom of speech. There are webpages I won't go to, and words I would not put in an email or search engine. I could go to the library and get a guest ID number, but now there may be a picture of my car parked in the library lot, under the guise of a parking study.
There is an opposing argument that we willingly forego privacy for compensation. When I use my Club Card at City Market, I get reduced prices but I provide personal information in exchange. The fallacy with this logic is that the "Club Price" is actually the real price, If you wish to remain anonymous, you pay a penalty. This dynamic has so pervaded every aspect of society, that one can hardly function as a member thereof, and maintain any privacy at all, without paying a severe penalty in terms of time, money, and inconvenience. One day, you will wake up to find that we are indistinguishable from East Germany under the Stasi. Check out the movie "Other People's Lives" to get a taste of that.
How ironic that, in this age of privatization, it appears that privacy itself is being privatized.
I look forward to hearing other people's views on this.
The Big Brother aspects of this device are so egregious, it would give most people pause if it claimed to enhance national security, much less parking enforcement efficiency. I strongly urge readers to click on the link in the article, view the TED Talk (It's only about 5 minutes long), and see how you feel about this. When questioned by Council on the use of the data, Chief Rae responded, somewhat rhetorically, that if we didn't trust him, who can we trust? This is a good time to remind public officials and City staff that, in a representative Democracy, government is to be accountable to, and held accountable by, the citizens. It is not to be trusted! Does anybody really believe, in this day and age, that data disappears when it is deleted? Where else is this data being stored? This is NSA technology being passed down to local law enforcement. It wasn't invented to catch parking violators. Listening to staff discussing the effectiveness of this device is like listening to national figures discussing the use of torture in terms of whether it was effective rather than in terms of who we are as people. Sure, there are cities that use this. But there are also cities that have started using it and stopped, and cities that rejected it outright. Not only does this device record your plate number, it also takes a photo. Public Works Director Chuck Anderson was impressed not only that it recorded parked cars, but it also recorded cars travelling down the road. It could photograph you and your kids getting out of the car in your driveway.
I think that lowering the speed limit from 45 mph to 35 mph on Rt. 40 South, as far as the Walton Creek Road intersection, would make that whole stretch of road a lot safer. It is heavily traveled and traverses rolling terrain, with numerous traffic lights, ingresses and egresses. Combine that with our winter weather, and it's no surprise that police have to clean up the same types of accidents at the same locations year in and year out. I realize it's a Federal Highway and it often takes a tragedy to get the attention of a bureaucracy. Some years ago, drivers were more relaxed and courteous, but these days I witness excessive, yet unproductive, jockeying for position. At a recent bicycle conference in Steamboat, one of the consultants who spoke expressed dismay at the 45 mph speed limit, within the City boundary, as well.
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