Letter - Teal must recuse himself on water votes

Posted 5/17/22

Teal must recuse himself on water votes Commissioners Teal and Laydon have for the third time voted to oust Commissioner Thomas from her rightful turn as Douglas County Board Chair, again slamming …

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Letter - Teal must recuse himself on water votes

Posted

Commissioners Teal and Laydon have for the third time voted to oust Commissioner Thomas from her rightful turn as Douglas County Board Chair, again slamming her with unproven and ridiculous accusations and ensuring media headlines to harm her campaign for sheriff. The last two times (in February and April 2022) they outrageously removed her over issues stemming from the high-stakes Renewable Water Resources (RWR) project that would pump water from the drought-stricken San Luis Valley into Douglas County.

During a February meeting the two removed her as chair only for meetings concerning RWR; they said because she opposed the project. But support or opposition for an issue has never been grounds for such vindictive action before. Rather than persecuting Thomas for non-crimes, it seems appropriate for Commissioner Teal to recuse himself from chairing or voting on anything involving RWR since his Tracer campaign account shows “In 2020 and 2021, Teal took in thousands of dollars in campaign contributions from five of the eight RWR principals,” said a Colorado Politics article. Those contributions totaled a hefty $10,000; and, said Teal, helped retire his campaign debt.

Could there be a connection between those generous donations and a grateful Teal’s enthusiastic support for the RWR project that would greatly enrich his RWR donors? Commissioner Thomas received contributions from some of the same people in her 2020 election, but her ethics have led her to vigorously oppose sucking all that water from the parched San Luis Valley.

Douglas County citizens have often seen Lora Thomas do the right thing: as coroner, prosecuting a sheriff’s department employee for stealing from the evidence locker; on her plan to expand I-25 at The Gap despite Sheriff Spurlock’s opposition to repurposing tax money; and now against spending millions for a project that will be tied up in court for years and may never happen.

Now Laydon and Teal are falsely accusing her of requesting “private information” about the people with whom Laydon met regarding the water project. But she never requested “doxxing” information about anyone, she simply asked the county’s water attorney, who works for her and the other commissioners, for a list of the meeting attendees, their organizations, and a record of the conversation. As a commissioner unable to attend the meetings she was perfectly within her authority to do so.

Lora Thomas has my vote for sheriff because of her proven strong ethical character against bullies which she will need in her next job.

Joy Overbeck, Parker

Choose common sense over pipeline

There has been a lot talk about water conservation lately so I decided to chart our elderly two-person household use over the past two years vs. our water budget. Having owned my house for 25 years I can, with a degree of confidence, multiply my usage/savings by 25.

Our usage was 59,000 gallons in 2021-22, 69,000 in 2020-21 and our water budget was 118,000.00 for 2021-22.

My household water use is not a scientific study, but I’m betting many Dougco senior homeowners have similar results. Common sense makes more sense than pumping water 200 miles from the San Luis valley, and Douglas County homeowners are literally sitting on millions of gallons of untapped water in their faucets.

Roy Legg, Highlands Ranch

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