Bach is delivering on promises
There was something special going on in Colorado Springs on Aug. 1 when over 750 community leaders gathered for lunch at The Broadmoor Hall.and it wasn't just the crisp salad, delicious filet, fresh asparagus and rolls. Aside from the strawberry shortcake for dessert, there was another "treat" in store when Mayor Steve Bach delivered his annual "State of the City" address and his vision for moving our city forward.
Upon entering office, Mayor Bach set several priorities including job growth, transforming city government and building community. The evidence is in and the good news for our community is Mayor Bach is delivering on those promises.
Mayor Bach also presented bold initiatives, which will surely be topics of intense discussion in coming weeks and months, including a United States Olympic Museum, a UCCS Sports Medicine and Performance Center, a Downtown Stadium and Event Center, and a USAFA Gateway at Falcon Stadium Visitor Center.
Each of these initiatives from our forward-looking mayor deserves our fullest attention. They need to be examined and evaluated as to their overall benefits to our community and the funding mechanisms necessary to make them become a reality. It will be an interesting discussion and one worth having.
I encourage each citizen to invest the time necessary to study these proposals and contribute to this important dialogue. Our mayor, City Council and other community leaders deserve that conversation and full engagement from our citizens.
I believe there will be many economic benefits realized with each of these proposals. And that means jobs and helping Colorado Springs realize its greatest potential as a vibrant city envied by cities throughout the country and, indeed, throughout the world.
Bob Balink, Colorado Springs
Comments show moral loophole
The Gazette published a story the other day detailing the arrest of several involved in a prostitution ring in Colorado Springs, which struck me as I never imagined the Springs to be a place where this kind of evil would be possible. I was upset when I read it, but became even more upset when I read the comments below the story online.
The top-rated comment related prayers to the victims, and wished prison rape on the alleged offenders, while another suggested castration as part of the sentence. However facetious such comments may be, they are sickening and expose a serious moral loophole.
The biblical commandment "Love thy neighbor as thyself" does not include a footnote saying "unless thy neighbor has egregiously sinned." How can you expect God to honor your prayer when in the same breath you ask that someone be sodomized repeatedly?
Amendment VIII of the Constitution, when prohibiting cruel and unusual punishment, does not allow for exceptions when the crimes were especially disgusting. Part of being a free society is that we don't punish crimes eye for eye. When a pimp exploits women, he treats them as animals. Much of what makes our country great is that justice requires the burden of proof, and even when convicted the guilty are still treated as human beings, not animals.
Jesting about someone being raped in prison, regardless of their crimes, does not exemplify a longing for justice, it exposes a lust for revenge.
Russell Pompea, Colorado Springs
Do we really need TABOR?
We have bridges that have washed out and city streets that are in need of serious repair. It is a real issue. Has TABOR really made a difference? Yes it has. We now need a vote, which will cost more than the cost of the repairs.
Do we really need TABOR? Or do we really need some real leadership in the community?
Marvin Utley, Colorado Springs
Increase was nearly 100 percent
Looking back at my water bill from about a year ago, I find that this past July I used about half the amount of water, but I paid nearly the same dollar amount due to unwarranted rate increases. This in spite of the SDS self-serving propaganda that over five years, rates would only increase by about 12 percent (2016 over 2010). By my account, my increase was nearly 100 percent over just this past year alone. I can only assume my experience is about average. If so, where is all the money going? Who is auditing Colorado Springs Utilities' books? Where can I get a copy of the audit, if it exists? Now we are being told that we will need to approve a tax to cover rebuilding and maintaining our stormwater system or suffer widespread flooding. Which is it - drought or excess rainwater? Hardly can be both! Why aren't Utilities' managers being taken to task for poor planning performance? Is it because they have come to believe they can get the council and the "strong" mayor to rubber-stamp any rate increase, no matter how ridiculous?
Ron Nesti, Colorado Springs
Local economy must be booming
After firsthand experience with local home improvement companies over the past two weeks, I must conclude that things are booming in our city. I've made appointments with a dozen companies (window replacement, stucco, etc.) and have averaged about half of the people showing up to give me an estimate (and most of them were late by 30 minutes or more). I guess that they're just too busy to keep appointments. The one company that showed up and seemed to have the most "professional" appearance, is at least 10-12 weeks out before they can start any work.
I guess it's good to live in a city where companies are too busy to take your business...right?
Gary Kollman, Colorado Springs