Document-1280x960.jpeg

Dan NjegomirDan NjegomirDecember 5, 20174min429

It had seemed so simple. “Do you want to directly elect your mayor?” Castle Rock voters were more or less asked in the Nov. 7 election.

Overwhelmingly, they said yes. All that was left was for the city council — of which current Mayor Jennifer Green is just another member chosen by council colleagues to wield the gavel —  to work out the details of letting voters city-wide elect the next mayor.

If only. The Devil’s always in the details — and he has been putting in overtime in Castle Rock since last month’s balloting. Reports Complete Colorado’s Sherrie Peif:

Despite voters in Castle Rock overwhelmingly passing a proposition to elect their mayor from an at-large population, they are likely to have to vote again on the topic, and it could be up to three years before their wishes are implemented.

The passage of Proposition 300, with 67 percent of the vote, clears the way for the residents of Castle Rock to elect their mayor, but it has created complications that essentially put the town out of compliance with its charter.

And that has led to divisions in the current council, reflecting factions in the community. Some want the transition to proceed apace, with a follow-up election as soon as next year, while others seem to want to go slower in order to get it right. Skeptics accuse them of foot-dragging, but those arguing for the more deliberative approach contend the ballot issue was sold simplistically in the first place, with too little focus on how, legally, to get from Point A to Point B.

Hence:

… the problem now is a council divided on how to incorporate the voters’ wishes and with two members continually absent.

That’s right; two of the council members seem to be MIA, and fellow council member George Teal, who supported the ballot initiative to direct-elect a mayor, smells a rat:

Teal said the biggest push back is still coming from the mayor, who he said won’t return his requests to talk. That is compounded by two members — Brett Ford, who represents District 7, and Jess Loban, who represents District 1, both of whom did not support electing the mayor and have failed to show up for meetings since the election.

(Mayor) Green would not discuss her opinion with Complete Colorado either. She only referred to the Nov. 14 meeting where she said she voted to refer the issue to a citizen committee.

It’s a convoluted saga that’s still unfolding; be sure to read Peif’s full story as she does a good job untangling the knots. Perhaps things also will become clearer tonight, when the council is scheduled to take up the issue again.


Roger-Hudson-Mug.jpg

Roger HudsonRoger HudsonOctober 15, 20174min1741

Lines have clearly been drawn in Castle Rock: those who want to elect their mayor on one side and those who would rather let the town council continue to appoint their mayor on the other. Fingers have been wagged, names have been called and I expect a few friendships have been strained. With an election less than a month away, the fight continues in Castle Rock over who should pick your local government — you or someone else?  


Roger-Hudson-Mug.jpg

Roger HudsonRoger HudsonJune 28, 20175min356

When was the last time you visited the little town of Castle Rock, Colorado? Has it been awhile? Just south of Denver, for many traveling along I-25 Castle Rock is simply a place we pass on our way to Colorado Springs. Of course, some may stop and fill up. Others might visit the ever-expanding Outlet Mall (slash) Promenade. And that’s just fine with most us who live there. We’re happy to see you, but even happier to see you go home.


JensenCIA02B.jpg

Rick JensenRick JensenDecember 12, 20166min225

How do we know Dr. Ben Carson is unqualified to be Secretary of Housing and Urban Development? Because House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said so, calling him "disturbingly unqualified." "There is no evidence that Dr. Carson brings the necessary credentials to hold a position with such immense responsibilities and impact on families and communities across America," Pelosi said.


taleoftworecalls-1024x609.jpg

Michael McGradyMichael McGradyMay 23, 201612min273

This year, some Colorado voters are once again exercising their state constitutional right to recall their elected leaders, an occurrence that is apparently becoming en vogue in the state. Of course, no two recall situations are alike, each of them borne out of unique situations with one common trait — elected officials finding themselves on the receiving end of an angry electorate feeling some degree of buyer's remorse. Within the last couple of months, voters in two Colorado cities, Castle Rock and Thornton, have raised their pitchforks to the sky, seeking to remove their elected city councilmembers due to contrasting situations. Like the recently successful Jefferson County School Board recall and the victorious 2013 Pueblo/Colorado Springs tossing of two state legislators over their votes on gun issues, the Castle Rock and Thornton recall campaigns — both in their fledgling stages — are starting to draw attention from across the state and even nationally as the movements take shape and moneyed interests invest financial resources on either side.