Unilateral action...
Jan 23, 2013 | 861 views | 0 0 comments | 12 12 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The recent decision by the Grand County Council to send a letter to President Obama opposing the creation of a Greater Canyonlands National Monument raises several serious questions.

First, the council members appear to represent only themselves, not the wider citizens’ community they are meant to represent. Less than a month since the new council was sworn in, it has taken this action. What was the motivation behind the quick action?

Second, was a sample of public opinion conducted before the council acted? The council appears to have acted without any sampling of the opinions of the Grand County community. Simply living in the county does not, in itself, mean one knows how everyone is thinking.

Were young people asked their opinion? They will be the eventual beneficiaries of whatever decisions are made about land use in the county. Were all segments of the county’s citizens provided with a forum for expressing their views? I don’t think such representation occurred.

Thus, the council gives the appearance of catering to special interests, rather than the long-term needs of the entire community. The county council members acted in a way they say they do not want the Obama administration to act—unilaterally, without input and discussion of the issues by all segments of the county’s citizens.

Third, where is the analysis that shows that off-road users are major economic contributors to county income? The letter itself suggests no such analysis has been done.

Thus, we can conclude that the county council is operating without a well-designed study and understanding of the economic factors in the county.

—Bill Rau

Castle Valley

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