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LETTERS: Colorado Springs has too much of everything; they do this every year

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Springs has too much of everything

During a recent trip to Colorado, my wife and I stopped in Colorado Springs for four days.

I was stationed in Colorado Springs in the Air Force from 1967-70. This is the first time I’ve been back since that time.

When I left Colorado Springs, it was 120,000 people and a nice city to live and work in. What did I find when I returned 51 years later? Too many people, too much traffic and rude drivers. They seem to drive too fast and rudely won’t let you merge into traffic anywhere — but especially on the freeways.

I have fond memories of Colorado Springs — but I was disappointed in that there seems to be too much of everything — especially people and traffic. We were able to visit some nice places; Garden of the Gods, Pikes Peak, and visited some places where I lived. Where Ent AFB used to be is now the Olympic Training Center — so much has changed, and I’m a little sad — but I guess you can never go back. I miss the old Colorado Springs.

David DeSau

Neskowin, Ore.

They do this every year

I hope the voters of Colorado Springs and El Paso County really understand what they will be voting for. The city and county want to keep the “extra” tax money they collect, and use it as they see fit. The city wants to keep $20 million, and the county wants to keep $15 million that we had to pay in taxes. They do this every year.

Why not reduce the tax rate so they do not collect taxes beyond what TABOR allows. The city wants to use the extra money collected from us “to mitigate the 35,000 homes in the “wild land urban interface”. For the most part, those are the expensive homes next to the mountains.

Those homeowners should be required to mitigate their own property. In addition, Mayor John Suthers says, “the ballot question does not list all the ways the money could be used to mitigate fire to ensure the city can use the money as it’s needed. The city and county know they will be collecting tax dollars beyond what TABOR allows, every year, and hope that the taxpayers will continue to allow them to keep our hard-earned money.

We need to stop this foolishness and vote against it.

Make them return your money.

Willie Alexander

Colorado Springs

Not at the price of dishonesty

Of those who spoke (many were denied due to board-imposed time restraints), all but two opposed a mandate. Half of the mandate-opposed were over 75, immigrants, had served in military overseas or had spouses serving. Those populations have experiences with life and government, liberty and tyranny, that deserve consideration.

Of the two who spoke in favor of the mandate along with the district’s medical advisory committee, none argued for mask efficacy. Instead, they argued that children have to wear masks to stay in school. My question is, says who? The advisory group continually spoke of “guidelines” or “recommendations” that we “have to” follow. Are we now governed by the public health department? I thought the elected state and federal governments and local municipalities made rules and laws.

Surprisingly, the medical advisory board didn’t address COVID. The aim of their recommendation was “quarantine avoidance,” not COVID avoidance. So now our enemy is quarantine? Who cares if masks don’t work, that’s not the issue any more, but quarantine is?

Apparently, our children have to wear masks at school all day, every day, not because they are effective (as admitted by the advisory panel) but because that is the token required by the health department to play the new anti-quarantine game. I support quarantine- and COVID-avoidance, but not at the price of dishonesty. I am not a citizen of the United States of Public Health.

Becky Warmack

Colorado Springs

Being able to afford to live here

Susan Davies frequently writes in her Gazette columns about funding trails and open space. In her Aug. 30 column, she mentions how pennies add up and pleads for taxpayers to vote for the next TOPS tax hike.

I have seen how requests for ‘pennies’ have driven the local sales tax from 4% to 8% in the last 30 years. Housing values have quadrupled in many cases during that time, and property tax and sales tax revenues are at all-time highs. The city buys additional park land when it clearly cannot properly manage the parks it has and then pleads the maintenance tax case.

I would feel better about ‘more pennies’ if dozens of bureaucrats and tax-hikers had not gotten their many pennies from me beforehand. When do we stop hiking the local sales tax — at 10%? 12%? Part of quality of life is being able to afford to live here at all.

Steve Helmreich

Colorado Springs

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