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Ellen Stark: Library District: Don’t put decisions into hands of unelected board

It is unfortunate that proponents of the Library District are categorizing those opposed to their proposal as library haters. This attitude inhibits discussion of the proposal itself, which I believe is flawed and leaves many questions unanswered.

Libraries are like my second home, and I am so grateful for Boulder’s crown jewels. In North Boulder, we have been eagerly awaiting the construction of our neighborhood library. The ballot proposal, however, while listing the creation of a new Gunbarrel library, makes no mention of the North Boulder Library.

The Library District proposal would take decisions about Boulder’s libraries out of the hands of its citizens and community and place them in the hands of an unelected board chosen by the City Council and the Board of County Commissioners. This unelected board might make decisions that are good for the communities outside Boulder but not necessarily for Boulder itself.

While some people consider the property tax increase this bill would levy a trifle, many long-time Boulder residents and seniors who wish to remain in their homes are troubled that their property tax bills — which have risen exponentially in the last few years and are expected to continue to rise — would increase even more. Yes, it is true our libraries have taken a hit during this pandemic, but the new City Council budget shows a healthy increase for our libraries.

The citizens of Boulder have always stood by their libraries and will continue to do so. We don’t need an unelected board taking that decision-making process away from us.

Ellen Stark, Boulder

Joseph La Camera: Friends: Having a lifelong pal is a gift

Bill Watterson said, “Things are never quite as scary when you’ve got a best friend.”

I met one of my best friends in 1961 when I moved to Colorado to do graduate work at the University of Colorado. Recently, Lemont and I were reminiscing about how we were so fortunate to have had such a long and enduring friendship. Lemont and I both agree that our long friendship has had a lasting impact on us both. I am approaching 86, and he is 91. We are both nearing the end of our lives since we have challenging medical issues. To do so alone can be scary, but the fact that we have this wonderful friendship together takes away the uncertainty and scariness. We call each other several times a week to see how we are doing.

To have such a good friend has been a gift to me. To recognize this and talk about it with each other has been nurturing. Try it, you may be surprised when you do. For us, there are no regrets. Perhaps, we have embraced the belief that each of us is who we are. As Fritz Perls has taught us that “It’s perfect if you let yourself be and be.” No pretense, no judgment, no games, just honesty.

Joseph La Camera, Boulder

Debra Cerio: CU South: Benefits of development are incremental

On an almost balmy 5:30 a.m. walk through Tantra Park, I could hear the song of a coyote where Open Space is just a few yards away. It wasn’t just eerily beautiful; it was a reminder of how lucky I am.

I’m all about progress, and we all recognize and understand that development is a part of progression. But when did we forget, or perhaps not understand, that maintaining an invaluable ecosystem is fundamental to progress? Destroying Boulder’s last undeveloped floodplain will have devastating impacts to everyone.

Aside from enjoying what CU South has to offer to dog (and cat) lovers, bikers, walkers, runners, tennis players, avid snow enthusiasts, conservationists and progressives, CU South as it is today, adds a huge amount of value to our entire community.

I did my homework. The development will, in my opinion, do little to prevent damage to south Boulder residents. The pending resources allocated for this small mitigation percentage can’t be reasonably justified.

Grassland and soil will absorb rainfall. Rooftops and pavement will not. We’ve all been witness to the destructive power of Mother Nature regardless of the engineering and the city’s attempts to manage run-off.

As CU increases enrollment, South Boulder will implode. Density is already an issue. We’ll be creating more of a traffic nightmare as we try and get to and from U.S. 36 and U.S. 93. No one will appreciate the layered disadvantages to traffic in this area.

For those that want to see an increase in their property value, trust me that will happen without the development. The harm to pending development is irreversible. The benefits of preserving CU South are incremental.

Debra Cerio, Boulder