OPINION: Letters to the editor

To the editor:

Thank-you Angela Myers for your work these past five years as our Larimer County Clerk and Recorder. Your focus on good service for all citizens and your fairness is obvious. I spent 45 years as a successful business owner with many dealings with the Larimer County Clerk and Recorder office. I now expect my tax dollars to be handled responsibly by you. I know how valuable it is to have an excellent employee on staff. Angela, you have done that for all of us here in Larimer County. You are transparent, strong, capable and cooperative, and your job has been a tough one. Let us champion your great work and re-elect you as our Larimer County Clerk and Recorder in November.

Loren R. Maxey

Fort Collins

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To the editor:

In Larimer County we are blessed with excellent candidates for offices all around. There are none finer than John Kefalas, candidate for county commissioner. Those who know John will have no trouble voting for him. Those who have not yet met him or followed his work as a state Representative and state Senator have something very encouraging to look forward to.

It has been my good fortune to meet and work with John in a number of areas for more than a decade, including health-care access and mental-health treatment.

In public John speaks clearly, always willing to be challenged and never hesitating to express his own views. In private he listens extremely well before offering his own perspective. I have always known where I stood with John. You can count on him to listen to you. John sees the big picture on the issues of our time and has the temperament to study them in depth before taking a stand. His work at the state legislature has shown us what he can bring to the county: detailed knowledge of problems, familiarity with state and local resources, and the ability to reach “across the aisle” to craft intelligent solutions.

Our county will face plenty of challenges in the coming years – not always obvious or expected, either. We will do well to have a proven public servant like John Kefalas on the commission to guide us through them.

Tom Linnell

Fort Collins

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To the editor:

I urge you to vote for Senator John Kefalas for Larimer County Commissioner.

Because Larimer County is an arm of the State of Colorado what we can do is determined by state statutes. In addition, funding for an array of county services comes through the state. In my years working for Larimer County government I saw how beneficial it was to have a commissioner who understood these dynamics and could navigate the legislative arena.

Critical issues facing Larimer County – from workforce development to smart growth, affordable housing to healthcare, clean energy to transportation – are the same issues John Kefalas works on in the state legislature. First as a Representative and now as a Senator, John Kefalas has served since 2007.

John Kefalas knows how to get things done: to date over 100 bills he sponsored have been signed into law. John Kefalas brings a non-partisan approach to the table. We have diverse interests in Larimer County and he believes it is important to work together for the common good. 

Because I share John Kefalas’ values and views; because I know how valuable the legislative experience he brings is; because I know he gets things done through an inclusive approach, I am voting for Senator John Kefalas for Larimer County Commissioner on Nov. 6 and encourage you to do the same.

Deni LaRue 

Fort Colliins

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To the editor:

There is a goal objective within the Larimer County Assessor’s office that is their stated and behaving creed: It should concern us all. Simply stated, “We strive to obtain fair and equitable property values for all.” This is no simple task, wound within complex state-mandated laws and, in Larimer County, overseeing some 150,000 parcels of property with a staff of but 43 dedicated and intelligent persons.
The easily most-qualified candidate for the county assessor’s office, is Alexis Smith. This job has no room for any “johnny come lately” from the East. Savvy and experience are strongly required. Some history on Alexis Smith. She is a veteran of the assessor’s office of 17 years, more importantly, trained under the careful eyes of Steve Miller, the most professional and skilled assessor in the State of Colorado.
Repeat: Over 150,000 property parcels in Larimer County, seeking fair and equitable values. Never perfect, but as close as we can become, mandated by use of the mass appraisal system. Alexis Smith has been smack dab in the middle of this success, right here in Larimer County.
It is in all of our best interests to keep this experience overseeing the complexities of fair and equitable values in our county. There is but one qualified candidate in this contest. Her name is Alexis Smith.

Daryle Klassen
County commissioner (1985-93)

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Letter to the editor:

We have been fortunate to have such a capable, experienced county clerk and recorder in Larimer County. Angela Myers has been improving and innovating this office since taking over five years ago. Before that she worked closely with Scott Doyle for 10 years, giving her the experienced background needed to run this office for our county. She has proven her ability by being accessible, caring for citizen’s concerns, and has done an exceptional job for us. We need to re-elect Angela Myers to keep the high quality, non-partisan leadership she can provide. Please get your ballot in by Nov. 6 and vote for Angela Myers for Larimer County Clerk and Recorder.

Janet Juell

Ft. Collins

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To the editor:

Sean Dougherty has proven himself as the ideal candidate to serve as our next Larimer County Commissioner. For the past five years I have worked alongside people who represent all levels of government in Colorado. I first met Sean Dougherty during a joint meeting of the Loveland and Larimer County Planning Commissions. He struck me then as a knowledgeable public servant who is committed to his duties. Having got to know him better over the years, I think he is the best choice for county commissioner.

I could include here the extensive list of leadership roles Sean held, the boards and commissions of which Sean has been a member, or the many charities and non-profits for which he volunteers, but many others have already done so.

Sean Dougherty has been serving the people in this county through various roles for more than a decade – the entire county. This race is not just about Fort Collins, Loveland or Estes Park. It is bigger than that, and it is incumbent upon all of us to choose a commissioner with a servant’s heart and the proven commitment to serve all of Larimer County. That commissioner is Sean Dougherty.

I firmly believe Sean’s vast experience, tremendous knowledge of the region, ability to work with others regardless of affiliations, and his dedication to the people and the future of Larimer County make him the best choice for Larimer County Commissioner. Please join me in voting for Sean Dougherty this November.

Jeremy Jersvig

Loveland City Council, Ward 1

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To the editor:

Thompson schools are severely underfunded. Over the past several years the budget has been examined and pared down to keep most of the cuts away from kids. If this current mill levy election fails, I’m afraid of the things we may have to eliminate because these cuts will directly affect students and classrooms. I’ve lived in Loveland for 44 years and was a teacher here for 27. I remember times when the district had to cut staffing to reduce costs. Class sizes rose between 32 and 36 students – I’d hate to see that happen again. In order to economize, this year the district decided to close two schools and reduced bus routes. In many Colorado districts they’ve cut extracurriculars such as sports, as well as electives like art, music and PE. In fact, to save money, over half of the districts in Colorado have gone to four-day weeks. This has huge impacts on families. For them, paying for day care one day a week would cost much more than the mill levy proposal. Our teachers are the lowest paid of comparable districts in our area, which makes no sense. We live in a thriving community that can afford to fund our schools at least as well as our neighbors, Poudre and St. Vrain. I hope our community will vote to support our public schools by supporting the upcoming mill election. I think the consequences to our students and our community will be very detrimental if we don’t.

Janet Jewett

Loveland

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To the editor:

Our community has supported the Thompson School District for generations. Voters built schools in neighborhoods that needed them, maintained the valuable assets they had, and paid competitive wages to hire and retain inspiring teachers.

Now it’s our turn.

Voting yes on 5A and 5B will raise much-needed revenue for every school in our underfunded district. Maintenance will get a critical boost: 28 of our 31 schools have had roof leaks in the past year. Buildings will see improvements in safety and security. And we’ll be able to keep class sizes to a manageable level, hire and retain the best teachers, and invest in important curriculum and technology upgrades.

The two initiatives will provide local control and oversight to benefit our students; in other words, your tax money will be overseen by your fellow taxpayers.

Please join me in voting yes on 5A and 5B and supporting the next generation of leaders, caregivers and innovators.

Ann Depperschmidt Baker

Loveland

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To the editor:

As a staff member of the Larimer County Assessor’s office for 30 years, I know it is imperative voters elect an assessor with experience and knowledge. Understanding mass appraisal practices, Colorado statutes, and proven qualifications are vital considerations for selecting the appropriate candidate. The county assessor is required to perform in biennial reappraisal that is in compliance with state standards and pass an independent audit every year. Alexis Smith has 17 years of office experience, been a deputy assessor in Larimer County for the past seven years, and has worked to make sure Larimer County meets these requirements. Larimer County has 150,000 parcels of which only a small percent ever appeal the values. With the strong real estate markets, more people are paying attention to those values, and that’s to be expected. Alexis has been instrumental in making it easier for all property owners in Larimer County to protest or review the sales information. Knowing the assessor’s duties, being accountable to the property owners, and meeting state statute requirements must be the standard for this vital office. Voters of Larimer County, please join me in supporting Alexis Smith for assessor.

Darren Dahlgren

Fort Collins

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To the editor:

Over the past two months I have made it a point to educate myself regarding the individuals running for office in our county. Unequivocally, Larimer County Treasurer Irene Josey rises to the top. Her unswerving and long-term commitment to serving Larimer County citizens is unprecedented. Irene has served in the treasurer’s office since 1986 and has guided the office from a managerial perspective since 1988. Irene’s outstanding service and commitment to excellence is evidenced by upgrading the software in the treasurer’s office to increase efficiency and accuracy. She has literally thousands of hours of fiduciary training, investor workshops, public funds, financial management and leadership training.

Without a doubt, Irene Josey has met and exceeded my expectations of an outstanding public servant.

Vote your ballot in favor of Larimer County Treasurer Irene Josey.

Jim Cosner

Fort Collins

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I turned on the radio the other day in my car and could not believe the ad that came on regarding Rob Woodward. I was astonished.

We lived next door to Rob and his family for about 15 years. This ad was not describing the Rob Woodward that we know.

We personally saw him and his wife open up their home and host summertime picnics again and again for his employees and their families. How does this align with a man who puts the bottom line on his businesses before his employees. We personally saw Rob come and pick up all items left from a garage sale for an auction to help support sports teams for Loveland youths.

We have been to several campaign meetings and a neighborhood meet and greet for Rob, and not once have we heard him say anything negative about his opponent. Doesn’t that speak loudly of his character?

Negative campaigning seems to be the norm these days, but for us, we would like to have someone represent our interests who feels that a candidate should stand on their own merits and not rely on telling untruths about their opponent in order to win on Election Day.

Rich and Barb Condon

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To the editor:

Prop 112 would hurt non-profits

Without the financial support of Colorado’s energy industry, the Poudre Learning Center’s critically-needed new InSTEM Station building would never have been built. Generous donations from SRC Energy, Noble, Anadarko, and PDC provided the center with the funds to complete a building and provide programming support for over 30,000 students and residents in northern Colorado. They now have the opportunity to study STEM topics, water, and the sustainability of natural resources in an outdoor setting year-round, and most importantly, during periods of inclement weather. In the past, significant numbers of previous class field trips from northern Colorado schools to the PLC had to be cancelled as soon as the weather turned marginal. With our new building, they now can continue as scheduled.

As past president of the Poudre Learning Center Foundation, as a member of the leadership council for the American Cancer Society, and as a volunteer for Habitat for Humanity in both Greeley and in Longmont/St Vrain Valley, I have personally observed that energy companies not only donate critical dollars to our area non-profits, but they bring volunteers from their companies to support causes important to all of us. From organizations as diverse as the Weld Food Bank to the Denver Center for the Performing Arts, energy companies supported over 500 Colorado non-profits with over $9.3 million of donations and more than 42,000 volunteer hours of active participation.

Much of this support would go away if Prop 112 passes. I urge a no vote on Prop 112.

Dan Austin

Windsor

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Letter to the editor

Re-elect Irene Josey to the office of county treasurer. Irene has served the citizens of Larimer County faithfully and professionally for many years in several roles, the last four as the treasurer. Experience coupled with competency matters, and Irene stand head and shoulders above her challenger, having served as the chief deputy treasurer prior to being elected to the top spot.

So what kind of job has she done as treasurer? She has continually securely invested the public funds entrusted to her. She has upgraded the department tax-collection software. She has shown a real commitment to improving customer service. She has managed her office efficiently, returning unexpended funds from her budget to the county coffers every year. There simply are no negatives. There is no logical reason why Irene shouldn’t be returned to office. ote for Irene Josey – treasurer.

Deborah Alderden

Ft. Collins   

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To the editor:

I attended one of the community meetings at which Alexis Smith spoke several weeks ago. Candidates who are willing to get out across this county to speak to voters and answer some tough questions are the ones working to earn your vote. Recognizing Larimer County is made up of more than just one or two urban centers is key for all our elected officials, but maybe even more relevant to an office that has to value the diverse properties here. Alexis Smith is the only candidate for assessor who recognizes that and has the knowledge and experience to be our next assessor. She is the current chief deputy assessor and a certified general appraiser who values Larimer County. Alexis Smith has my vote for assessor. Her knowledge and expertise are appreciated and needed in the assessor’s office. Join me. Vote Alexis for assessor.

Dawn Aezuolaitis

Loveland

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Larimer County experience matters, and that is why I am voting for Sean Dougherty. Sean has constructively spent many years on the Larimer County Planning Commission, the Fort Collins Local Legislative Affairs Committee, and the Red Feather Lakes Planning Advisory Committee. In his time living in Larimer County for nearly 20 years he has volunteered with the Realities for Children Charities, the Boy Scouts, Neighbor to Neighbor charities, and with the largest annual fundraiser for Disabled Resource Services. His proven record of working with budgets for his own successful business has given him the financial foresight to administer the taxpayers’ money wisely. He has built essential relationships with our county-elected officials, who are supporting him, and plans to continue their priorities, including the maintenance and repair of our road infrastructure, including the expansion of North Interstate 25. He is committed to be accessible and accountable to the citizens of our county. As a 44-year resident of Larimer County, I have spoken to him one-on-one several times and listened to his half-hour discussions about his candidacy. Vote for Sean Dougherty for Larimer County Commissioner.

James M. Adell

Loveland

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To the editor:

I am a former Colorado state representative from southeast Colorado and long-time Larimer County resident. I have known Treasurer Irene Josey for over 14 years – personally and professionally. Irene has handled all of Larimer County’s property taxes very well. As a result of her commitment to managing county tax dollars with safety and security, Irene has gained my trust and support. Irene is our current treasurer who was elected in 2014. Larimer County voters trusted her then and continue to trust her today. Irene has faithfully represented county taxpayers and has been a watchdog for the county’s taxpayers. If we want to make sure our county tax dollars remain safely invested and in experienced hands, please join me in voting to re-elect Irene Josey as our Larimer County Treasurer.

Mike Salaz

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To the editor:

The office of assessor is not political in nature. The assessor’s job is to fairly and uniformly value all real and business personal property in the county, while complying with the Colorado Constitution, State Statutes and guidelines, and the highest professional standards. Alexis Smith is a certified general appraiser who now serves as Larimer County’s Chief Deputy Assessor. She has the knowledge and the expertise to run the office and has helped to do so quite efficiently for the last several years. Alexis was instrumental in creating the Larimer Assessor website. The website offers information to anyone who wants to know how to verify property values and to protest property values. Alexis continues to offer an office environment in which taxpayers at any time of the year can come in for a review of their property value and an explanation of how values are determined. Property owners are encouraged to review the values assigned to their properties closely and to seek value adjustments when they believe the values would benefit with some correction. An independent auditor selected by the State Board of Equalization audits every assessor’s office in the state every year. Alexis, along with the highly trained staff, has ensured the Larimer County Assessor’s Office has passed every audit and made every deadline every year. Alexis is the best and only qualified candidate for assessor this year. Please join me in supporting Alexis Smith for Larimer County Assessor.

Dianne Ahart

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To the editor:

When I decide who to vote for in the county candidate races, I care about voting for the person who is right for the position for which they are running. Who will do it best, and with integrity?

For me, the “best” is multifaceted. In an ideal world, I’d like the person to be experienced, accountable, and someone I think I can trust. I’ve been doing my research, and when those three criteria are used as the measure for Larimer County Treasurer, it’s a pretty clear-cut decision. Irene Josey is getting my vote.

Irene Josey has served as elected treasurer since 2015 and as the chief deputy treasurer for 26 years. She’s clearly dedicated to her profession.

She also has a great track record for being accountable. As treasurer, Mrs. Josey returned more than $500,000 in unspent, allocated budget funds back to the tax payers. She’s clearly trustworthy with our money. Larimer County was awarded Moody’s highest credit rating, Aaa. That rating reflects how the financial industry views the fiscal health of an organization. When you vote your ballot, help elect the right people to keep our community thriving. Be sure to vote for Irene Josey for Larimer County Treasurer.

Denise Cosner

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I’m a mid-30s working professional with young children. I work hard and my finances are very important to the success of my family. Without balancing my income and debts, my ship sinks, and my family with me. I have to put my money to its best use, and I expect my elected officials to do the same. 

When it comes to Larimer County Treasurer, that expectation carries more weight. It’s important that the person in that role be knowledgeable, qualified, and have an honest track record. From all I’ve read, I believe Irene Josey is the person we need. 

Mrs. Josey is the Larimer County Treasurer and has worked in that office for nearly 30 years.  She’s taken fiduciary training, participated in prudent investor workshops, taken public funds and financial management classes, and has developed her leadership skills.

During her first term as Larimer County Treasurer, the office has clearly evolved technologically under her leadership and efficiency. She has returned more than $500,000 of unspent, allocated budget funds to taxpayers. She is also currently the treasurer for the Center for Family Outreach and serves on other boards and committees in the community. She is clearly committed to the success and security of our community and its families.

So when I look at the ballot in November, I want to see the names of people who will dedicate themselves as fiercely to the well being of our community as I do to my family. Those are the people I’ll be voting for.

I’m voting for Irene Josey for Larimer County Treasurer, and I hope you do, too.

Codi Anderson

Ft. Collins

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My name is Elijah Hendershott and I am a student at CSU in the Social Work program, writing you today in hopes of gathering support for the vote on 1A. This bill is very important to the overall wellbeing of Larimer County going into the future and the ability to cause great change is not one that should be taken lightly.

Over the past several years, there have been noticeable trends throughout the USA of increasing suicide, substance abuse, as well as mental illness that are not being treated appropriately. With proper help, these individuals suffering can become the best version of themselves and begin the arduous process of healing. There is a link between all these different issues and the lack of services and funding to provide aid for those who are most in need of help. All of these issues 1A is aiming to address by delivering a more easily accessible and affordable community mental health initiative.

By supporting this new facility and the services it will provide, we can all help those individuals within our community who are most in need of support and ensure they are no longer required to travel outside Larimer County. We can lower the cost of receiving help and ensure that no one must suffer simply because they don’t believe they can afford to access mental health services. All this is simply feeding back into the community and allowing those who are in a positive position to lend a hand to those who are most in need, while promoting a stronger community around them.

By voting YES on 1A and supporting the building of a new mental health facility, you and everyone in Larimer county can ensure everyone is getting the help they most need at a much lower cost and much closer to home than ever before. It is truly an effort to pull all the community together and show exactly why mental health matters and the part we can all play in helping our neighbors.

For more information please visit: https://www.larimercountymentalhealth.info

Thank you so much for taking the time to read this and your consideration for voting Yes on 1A.

Elijah Hendershott

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