Vote for Progress

Today is Election Day, thankfully. You have to be as tired of reading and hearing about the elections as we are of talking and writing about them. Shortly we’ll know what direction the public wants to take city government and by extension the community itself.

Over the last month I’ve written that the “Election offers choice between progress, decline,” that “Ballot Issue # 2 = Good Streets Fort Collins,” about “Why Elections Matter,” and that there are clear distinctions between the candidates.

I’ll spare you from a rehash of all that and just say ‘ditto.’

One thing that is clear since I wrote last week is that community activists really don’t want the business community involved with local elections! This isn’t new, of course, but the vitriol is always somewhat surprising. The basic message is something like this: ‘Businesses and their evil minion – the chamber of commerce – are ruining our community and you should support the candidates they don’t support.’ Often there are flourishes about ‘corporate welfare, ‘rampant growth,’ and ‘traffic congestion.’ Never mind that the most of the writers moved here from another state and offer only hate-filled diatribes with no solutions to the ‘problems’ they cite!

Another thing is clear from seeing the general attacks on business and the specific attacks of the Chamber: businesses and individuals are right in their desire to donate anonymously to groups like Citizens for a Sustainable Economy to promote their beliefs and protect their interests.

The hypocrisy of people moving here then working to keep others out by using the coercive power of local government to set high fees and regulations on new development and driving up utility rates is a thing of wonder to me.  What angers me, though, is the slur against businesspeople, many of whom have been here for generations providing services and products, donating millions to charitable causes, employing people and underwriting government services through the taxes they pay directly and through the payrolls they inject into the local economy.

That’s why the elections matter. It’s better to have people in public office that have some appreciation of business and won’t instinctively work to drive them out of town or make it more difficult to do business here than it is to play defense the entire time an anti-business / anti-progress council is seated.

Troxell for Mayor, Ray Martinez District 2, Eric Kronwall District 4 and Gerry Horak District 6. Ballots are due at City Hall by 7:00 PM this evening.