‘Strip away the unprovable,

focus on the tangible’

Edgewood’s July 7 Town Hall meeting was an unwelcome reminder that all politics is local, and that all local politics tends to become personal. Those who attended in order to gather information were forced to sift through hours of ill-informed, disrespectful comments in order to get anything useful. It’s even more disappointing to learn that some of our local churches’ contact networks are being used as conduits for spreading character assassination and unfounded rumors.

The letter of intent sent by the town has been described as harsh, but a direct approach is more honest. The town was not inviting the directors of EPCOR over for tea and scones; it served notice that it intends to pursue eminent domain. Use of conciliatory language carries the risk of being accused of acting in bad faith. The suggestions offered at the meeting for softening the tone would have been akin to inviting someone over for a neighborly dinner, and then trying to recruit them into a pyramid scheme over coffee and desert.

Another hot topic was the Open Meetings Act (OMA). Whether or not it seems right and proper, state law allows the process of giving (and receiving) formal notice to take place out of public view. Going public immediately was not required; doing so was EPCOR’s choice.

It appears, based on remarks made at recent meetings, that this effort is the result of former Councilors Chuck Ring and Rita Loy Simmons along with Councilors John Abrams and Sherry Abraham giving assent for the mayor and town staff to explore the possibility. Councilors Linda Holle and Audrey Jaramillo joined the governing body after the fact, and are now faced with the unenviable prospect of jumping into a moving canoe with choppy water ahead.

This is being represented by opponents as a non-stop express, but that is not the case. Going forward, there are two legally mandated stops along the way; it is at those decision points where the governing body will vote in open session on whether or not to proceed.

The possibility of buying the water company is an opportunity which should at least be considered, but in order to make a sound decision it will be necessary to analyze EPCOR’s financial information. Doing so will cost money, but I suspect far less than former Mayor Brad Hill’s ambitious but ill-fated Preliminary Engineering Report (PER) which sought to abandon the current wastewater plant, build a new one, and make significant changes to the service area. The plan never was feasible; the money would have been better spent elsewhere.

Strip away the unprovable, focus on the tangible, and we have the town’s letter of intent, EPCOR’s mailings, and a defunct PER which Hill inserted into the discussion on the 7th. In trying to analyze this situation, have we been looking too much at individuals and rumors while neglecting crucial public documents?

I do not think he intended to do so, but Hill made an excellent case for the buyout when describing the benefits of our wastewater plant. What he said about its role in paying for services such as roads, libraries and parks, as well as police and emergency services goes double for a municipally owned water company. Water and wastewater are two sides of one equation. Both are essential components of future growth if Edgewood expects to meet its goals of providing more jobs, attracting more young families, and increasing services to residents.

Janelle Turner

Edgewood resident; not an EPCOR customer

 

4th of July event was

lacking patriotism

This year’s Edgewood “4th of July” Field of Arts Festival left me somewhat disappointed. Although the weather was mild, the people were friendly, and the atmosphere was relaxing, there was still something lacking.

The Fourth was America’s birthday and I saw no celebration. After six generations of being the best country in the world, and growing from 13 to now 50 states, was there no celebration and no honoring of our country? I’m thinking, maybe I was the only proud American there at the Festival? Isn’t what happened 242 years ago important to remember? The single most significant event in our history is “freedom,” freedom to have personal life, liberty and pursuit of happiness for all citizens. Does it get any better than that? To the contrary, socialism claims to provide everything free, yet fails miserably to protect its citizens’ life, liberty and pursuit of happiness against the ruling class. All American citizens experience freedom like no other country. Citizens of other countries can only dream of the freedom Americans take for granted. Should we (e pluribus unum) take every opportunity to celebrate our freedom, especially on our country’s birthday?

I am disappointed in the sponsors of the festival (the town of Edgewood and Arts Alliance). They neglected to honor our great country by hijacking the title “4th of July,” only using it to get people to the event. A simple statement like, “Come and let our community celebrate our country’s independence” would have been a start in the right direction. I am disappointed that patriotism is in decline and not represented in Edgewood government when putting on the 4th of July Field of Arts Festival.

Next year I may just stay home.

Mary Reasor, Edgewood

 

Travelers through Edgewood

thank first responders

On the second day of our six-week vacation, we blew a tire after staying in Edgewood. Policeman Saul Urbina came and offered to help change our tire after he answered another call. While we were removing luggage from the trunk to get the spare tire and jack out, three Edgewood firefighters came to change our tire. While Kevin changed the tire, Samantha and Ramon put out flashers and helped to direct traffic. They also replaced our luggage, jack and blown tire in the car. Officer Urbina returned to park behind our car to protect it from traffic.

We were directed by them to the Walmart service department for a new tire while they stayed to make sure we were safely headed there. We were so fortunate to be assisted by such caring, friendly service people from your community. Your community can be very proud of these people who protect you.

Two grateful seniors,

Hal Cassen & Wanda Ringhofer, Mesa, Arizona