Forced pooling

Just when you thought the oil and gas industry couldn’t have any more power in Colorado, you learn about “forced pooling.” Even if you own the mineral rights under your property, they can be taken from you to allow fracking. For example, at the Wildgrass neighborhood in Broomfield, 500 homeowners learned that, if just one of them agrees to the terms offered by Extraction Oil and Gas, all of them will …

Jail, mental illness and homeless

The interrelated problems of homelessness, jail overcrowding and lack of effective treatment for people with mental illness must be addressed. Every year these problems get bigger. Criminalizing vagrancy and mental illness has not been effective in solving the problem. In 2014, according to an article in the Daily Camera, 40 percent of the prison population had a diagnosed mental illness. Many of these people are homeless. We have merely kicked the …

Diversity at CU

The leadership at CU claims to want greater diversity, inclusion and retention. Maybe they should start at the top. Based on photos from the CU website, Bruce Benson’s executive team has eight white men and four women, one of whom is black. This ethnic makeup is hardly representative of the population of Colorado. Perhaps the CU president should hire a more diverse team. Once hired, they would have to receive fair …

Minimum Wage

Nobody can get by on $8.31 per hour. Franklin Roosevelt enacted the minimum wage in 1938 to keep working families out of poverty. Clearly another boost is needed to achieve that goal today. Businesses are often vocal opponents of any increases. They argue jobs will be lost and companies will be forced to shut down. In reality, research shows that there is little or no negative effect on jobs or small …

Fracked

Excerpt from Daily Camera editorial advisory board 05/06/2016 written by Judy Amabile  This week’s topic: What’s your take on the Colorado Supreme Court’s fracking decisions striking down a ban in Longmont and a moratorium in Fort Collins? On Jan. 7, 1632, the city of Cambridge passed the colonies’ first land-use regulations. One measure restricted the location of horse stables. They were considered a nuisance. In 1916, New York City enacted the country’s …

Elections and Democracy

County Commissioner Deb Gardner said this about Paul Danish’s entrance into the race: “I think it will be a good conversation…there will be differences between the two of us…A choice is good for democracy.” I wholeheartedly agree with her. They will debate issues like fracking, GMO crops on open space, growth and density, and the county’s role in affordable housing, to name a few. Both candidates are smart and thoughtful. …

Living Wage

Reading about the pay rates and employment practices of the city of Boulder and the University of Colorado and the companies they contract with is disturbing. Boulder has spent millions of tax dollars creating affordable housing, caring for the homeless and providing a safety net for our most vulnerable citizens. Taxpayers have given this money because we value fairness, diversity and compassion. Now we learn that the city uses our …

2014 Election Results

The Republicans’ strategy of portraying President Obama and the Democrats as not just unpopular, but downright terrifying, was very effective. Political advertising reached an all-time low with regard to false and misleading scare tactics. Ebola and ISIS were seen streaming across the Rio Grande River with the help of Mexican coyotes, all hell-bound to kill us in our beds. In Colorado, Nathan Dunlap was at the prison gate ready to spring …

The flood

A friend sent me a link to a video that oddly captured so many aspects of the flood this week. The video, “Boulder Flood Lyfe,” shows Connor Wall, Will Adams and Knutzen Hoff’s evacuation route out of Fourmile Canyon. You see their devastated home, neighbors checking in on neighbors, rescue workers, repair crews and police. The road is destroyed and the river is raging. Two of the young men are riding …

Smoking ban

Having cigarette smoke blown in your face while walking on the Pearl Street Mall is like having somebody spit on you. Being out in public exposes us to all manner of rude and sometimes disgusting behavior; that’s life. Thankfully, the Boulder City Council has drawn a line at the injustice of having to breathe somebody else’s toxic fumes. The university should follow suit and ban smoking on all CU campuses. …