meters (copy)

Concerns about utilities changes

Have you received your “time for upgrade” card from Colorado Springs Utilities? If so, you should be eyeing it warily and seeking to educate yourself.

The card talks about the need to replace old meters with newer, ‘smart meters’ and how that’s going to provide better billing details and power management. The very last bullet (“creates opportunities for new rate options”) is the real area of concern. Why? It’s a precursor to Time Of Use (TOU) utility rates which benefits Utilities by shifting demand/load and covering the variable costs of power generation but provides little proven benefit to consumers — get ready for even higher utility rates.

With TOU, the idea is to shift energy usage to off-peak times when rates are lower and make consumers pay more during peak times (typically 4 p.m.- 9 p.m.). The fairness of such an approach has not been validated in pilot uses and the promise of “lower rates” (if only you’d shift to off-peak) is rarely realized. Not everyone has the flexibility to shift their usage lower their peak-usage or can manage usage during early evening at-home times – lack of flexibility typically affects households that can least afford impacts to their energy bills.

Replacing the meters might be decided already, but the City Council must scrutinize any Utilities plan to implement TOU rates so the city, its citizens, and businesses continue to benefit from clean, reliable, and affordable energy.

Lance Miller

Colorado Springs

Future of the city

I appreciated your editorial, with a wonderful summary of this special city we call home, with so many assets.

One asset that you might have overlooked is the number of churches and mission agencies as well as other NGOs that call Colorado Springs home.

Our faith-based agencies provide stability and practically serve our city with monthly services as well as regular events such as food drives, school supply fundraisers, Christmas gifts and city cleanup. I applaud their contributions, too.

I appreciated your mentioning the need for a good city government. A big concern I have is what appears to be rampant development. Do we realize that the finite amounts of water we have must be shared with each of those new projects?

I rarely hear much about that.

Improve our schools? Yes! But city and county government must also balance water use and development.

Catherine Pott

Colorado Springs

What a concept

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Speaking as a proud Libertarian, recent revelations of school districts, teachers, and their unions indoctrinating children with critical race theory, “woke” values, sexualization, gender identity, “alternative” lifestyles, etc. are more than a little concerning.

So, . . . instead of looking to duh gubment to tell you what they’re going to do for (or is it really to?) the children, why not let the parents decide how they want their children educated?

With the money following the kid instead of government, parents can decide what’s best for their children. Parental choice? What a concept!

If parents want to educate their children, that’s fine. Homeschoolers have been doing quite well for decades.

If they want to send them to a new or different school, that’s fine, too.

The good schools will do well when the word gets around and nobody will want to send their kids to a loser. Competition? What a concept. The parents can’t gripe because they don’t like the outcome, no second-guessing, no coulda’, woulda’, shoulda,’ no nothing.

I’ll bet parents will band together, pool their resources, create their own schools, and take care of their own kids. Parents caring for their own children? What a concept.

Of course, the teachers union, bureaucrats, legislators, and school districts will have a coronary because their monopoly would be in danger. Hey, this is sounding better and better all the time.

Just think of the gas saved and the smog avoided from not driving the kids back and forth all over town. Hey, wait a minute. They can spend that money saved on (OMG!) the kids. Individual and parental rights, responsibilities, choices, self-determination, and market-driven rewards and consequences. What a concept.

Gordon Carleton

Pueblo West

Columnist isn’t well-balanced

Re: Froma Harrop’s “Some people I don’t want to see next year” opinion piece. Her claim that Mehmet Oz was handpicked by Donald Trump is false. The Pennsylvania primary election process selected Oz. The correct wording is or might be that Trump was an Oz supporter — there is a difference. Heaven forbid Oz used a French word in one of his campaign ads. Oz is very well-educated (Harvard and UPenn) and well spoken. Based on his TV shows, he strikes me as a very thoughtful and considerate human being. Is that all Harrop has on Dr. Oz? Really? I would be OK with seeing him next year. Then she goes on to slam Elon Musk about Twitter. I really believe Musk is trying to make Twitter more balanced. She talks about certain speech hurting broader society. Who gets to be the judge of that? I’m OK with seeing more of Musk next year. I don’t know much about Kevin McCarthy but apparently Froma does. I have witnessed the actions of current speaker Pelosi and oh my, she is not a saint. Her tearing up Trump’s State of the Union address was very childish. Her handpicked Republican selections for the Jan. 6 committee truly invalidated the important work of that group.

I am disappointed in The Gazette for continuing to publish Harrop’s articles. I understand The Gazette is trying to be balanced, but her pieces are always so one-sided and seem to avoid inconvenient facts.

Gary Schwark

Westminister

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