Mark Sandstrom: CU South: Housing and flood protection are separate issues
I am disappointed that the new city manager of Boulder agreed to coauthor a guest opinion with CU Chancellor Philip DiStefano. We need a strong voice representing all City of Boulder residents’ interests, not one blindly conceding to CU’s expansive goals. With all the knowledge and creativity in the Boulder community, we should be able to accomplish the goals of flood protection in South Boulder Creek, without the harmful effects of additional housing and traffic in the CU South plan. A main argument for the CU Boulder South plan is the need for increased housing for students. An alternative approach is to reduce the need for housing by limiting the number of students through registration limits. Flood mitigation and increased CU growth and housing are separate issues and don’t need to be linked. Boulder voters should pass the ballot initiative to overturn the annexation.
Mark Sandstrom, Boulder
Marilyn Heller: Student loans: Restore government funding for higher education
There has been much criticism of Biden’s plan for student loan forgiveness, but what are some of the reasons students have to go into debt in the first place?
College costs have risen much faster than inflation, while government funding has decreased dramatically. When I started CSU in the 1961-62 school year, tuition and fees were $240 per year. Now it is $12,260
According to Manpower Group, 46% of American employers can’t find the workers they need. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce says this is keeping 40% of employers from taking on more work.
The U.S. is 13th in the world in the number of 25- to 34-year-olds who have some kind of college credentials, according to the OECD. “Fifteen or 20 years ago, we had the most highly educated population in the world,” according to the former University of Wisconsin President Kevin Reilly. “… We’re really damaging the future of our competitiveness, and I would argue even our security.”
It would be better to restore the government funding for higher education instead of burdening students with debt, but since that has not been the case, it is only fair to reimburse students for money the government did not supply.
Marilyn Heller, Loveland
Diana Greer: Election: Can we trust candidates to live up to their words?
Woulda, shoulda, coulda. Joe O’Dea says he would have done this or would have voted that way. Those are claims, not done, not proven.
When was the last time a candidate said one thing but fell into old, conservative ways? It’s a pattern we’ve seen with the three most recent conservative nominees to the U.S. Supreme Court. They strongly implied they would let precedent stand and then voted to overturn 50 years of historical decisions.
Joe presents a nuanced opinion of women’s healthcare. Others trust women to know what’s best for them, under their individual circumstances. What would Joe do? We don’t know.
Diana Greer, Loveland
Mary Faltynski: Library District: Let’s vote for the best gift Boulder has to offer
Public libraries have been there for me at every phase of my life. Summer reading challenges as a child. Homework (and flirting) as a teenager. As a young adult, I checked out books on investing, home repair and childbirth. I brought my own children to the library time and time again. Finally, as an empty nester, I check out travel books. I still use the library to expand my world.
There is joy in leaving the library with an armful of books that I, and then a hundred more people after me, will devour. This is a true public good, and it needs public support to work. Forming a library district will provide a stable source of revenue for our libraries so they do not have to compete with the police, emergency services or business priorities.
Currently, in North Boulder, we do not have a full-service library that families can walk to. A tiny corner library struggles to meet the needs of hundreds of families. Unlike other branches, there is no meeting space, technology sharing or even the simple opportunity to browse the stacks. A fully functional NoBo library will change that, but the funding is uncertain unless we make an intentional investment.
The opportunity to read to one’s children, connect them to art and music, and cultivate a love of learning benefits families and the entire community. Children are more prepared for school. Neighbors interact with one another more frequently. If I had a dime for every time I’ve heard people say kids today don’t play/read/interact the way we used to, I could fund the library. Let’s vote yes for the library district and provide kids today with the most wholesome, educational, safe gift Boulder has to offer — a fully funded library.
Mary Faltynski, Boulder