Last week, Greenwood Village voters received an email endorsing candidates for City Council from “Save Our Village.” It expressed a desire to “reach everyone … to talk about our issues and values” and asked voters to urge “your neighbors to vote for our candidates.” Yet it had no explanation of “Why?” The Save Our Village website has no names, no platform and no issues. In fact, the organization’s “Vision” tab contains no content. So what are those issues and values, and who is Save Our Village?
Villagers should question why an anonymous PAC is promoting candidates with no explanation of their experience, platform or positions. Most voters know Save Our Village as a group organized on one issue—proposed rezoning of the Orchard Subarea. Clearly, voters voiced their opinion on that and it’s now time to move on. Yet, if their candidates’ websites are viewed, Save Our Village seems to be reigniting divisiveness and pursuing an election based on a fear of property development.
The phrase “Save Our Village” also requires greater clarity. Residents know their platform opposed changes to GV’s Comprehensive Plan to allow mixed-use development, including space for residential units, small businesses and community space. Yet many residents believed the vote was about one “high-density housing” plan and they rejected it based on that.
Voters expressed fears about traffic congestion, though traffic is more impacted by 70,000 commuters to DTC than by residents. Voters also expressed concerns about overcrowded schools, though no data supports that claim, especially west of I-25. In fact, no one acknowledges that the Landmark Towers are “high-density” housing with no connection to school-enrollment problems.
While concerns are honest, many are based on misinformation. And people who warn of “high-density urbanism” and pledge to uphold “Village values” should be careful with such hyperbole and loaded words.
Currently, two SOV-promoted candidates seem involved in the group. Specifically, the physical address for SOV appears to be Dave Kerber’s house, and Jerry Presley directly responded to emails to the group. Thus, it appears Kerber and Presley may have organized a third-party PAC, which in turn anonymously endorses themselves. Now, that may not be illegal or unethical, but it certainly seems a bit suspect to average voters. At the least, it lacks transparency.
Voters might also scrutinize the candidacies of Kerber, Presley and Anne Ingebretsen over the precedent they set. Each candidate has served on City Council, but Greenwood Village has term limits. While a loophole may allow the law to be circumvented for nonconsecutive terms, that’s hardly the spirit of term limits. Granted, these individuals have experience in public service, but voters deserve new qualified voices to help the council stay fresh and avoid the downside of unchecked incumbency.
Voters should be curious about SOV. What are their goals, values and vision? Will they disclose membership? Will they make themselves available in public forums? Village voters deserve some transparency.
2017 All Rights Reserved. Villager Publishing |