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PAGE 4 — Herald Democrat — JANUARY 28, 2016

OPINION Editorial

Here’s our take Election news is in the headlines, and the Herald has started getting calls about the fact that Ken Olsen has switched his primary residence from Dist. 1 to Dist. 3 in order to run for county commissioner. Specifically he has switched his primary residence from his home to his place of business. What we’re hearing is: “How can this happen?” (We’re also hearing: “I’d say something but I have to do business with the county and don’t want to go on the record ... blah, blah, blah.” In other words, “Let the Herald speak up.”) Here goes. We’re having a hard time wrapping our minds around this one. Everything we’ve read in the Colorado Revised Statutes indicates that this doesn’t wash. For example: “The residence of a person is the principal or primary home or place of abode of a person ... in which a person’s habitation is fixed and to which that person, whenever absent, has the present intention of returning after a departure or absence.” “No vacant lot or business address shall be considered a residence.” The only way it does work is if Olsen has really moved lock, stock and barrel into his place of business and has permanently vacated his home. It means he’s changed his driver’s license and car registration and is filing his income tax from that new address. If, in fact, he has been serving as a political delegate from Dist. 1, he has now resigned. It means when he closes his eyes at night and opens them in the morning, he generally can be found at 731 U.S. 24 South. And this isn’t just for the duration of the campaign. If he should make it as far as getting elected, he will have to remain at the address while serving, because people who move out of their districts lose their positions. So do we think that’s what’s happening? Well, Olsen wouldn’t respond to questions from this newspaper as to whether he’s actually living at that address. That kind of raises a red flag. Yet County Clerk Patty Berger, who has the responsibility to ensure that elections are on the up and up in this county, doesn’t appear to have a problem with the whole thing. She said Olsen can claim his business as a residence, and that many people run businesses out of their homes. Yes, but do people run homes out of their businesses? She said she saw tax and sanitation bills, but we’re sure that as owner of that building, Olsen pays the property taxes and the sewage bills. She said she is not required to go any further. For example she doesn’t have to “peek through the windows.” Olsen also changed his official address on his voter registration a couple of days late. In other words, his new address on U.S. 24 won’t be his official address for a full year at the time of the November election. “That’s not the date he moved,” Berger said, implying that the date Olsen moved is what really matters, not the date he officially changed his address. So what date did he move into 731 U.S. 24 South? We don’t want to see Berger peeking through windows, either, but when an issue is as controversial as this one, we do expect more oversight. The real burden, however, falls squarely on Olsen. He still owes the voting public some answers. Marcia Martinek Herald Editor

Letters to the editor New ownership of Safeway should be good

“With new owners, Safeway moves on.” That was the headline in the San Francisco Gate on Jan. 29, 2015. In early January of 2015 Cerberus Capital Management, a New York private equity firm, bought Safeway. Cerberus also owns Albertsons and a string of smaller grocery store chains. Cerberus has just over $24 billion under its management. Safeway as it is now known may no longer exist. It is a shame that the Safeway era may come to an end, an era that started in 1926 in Pleasanton, Calif. At one time Safeway was the second largest grocery store chain in

the U.S.A. Cerberus is currently restructuring Safeway. Some smaller and less profitable stores are being sold or closed. In the meeting held recently with the Albertsons/Safeway people out of Denver, our local Safeway will not be sold or closed. What also came out of that meeting is that there are plans in place to do what can be done to improve our local Safeway. There is no doubt that we need a larger and more up-to-date Safeway. But the problem is where to build a new store. Our local Safeway is land locked and cannot be expanded. Once the merger of Albertsons/Safeway is completed, what will emerge is a new company “yet to be named.” There will be 2,300 stores with a total of 250,000 employees. Cerberus is clearly “bullish” on the supermarket

sector. What this means for us locals should be a good thing. We should start to see better product selection, more competitive pricing and the ability to respond to local needs more quickly. At least that is the word coming out of Albertsons/Safeway corporate headquarters. Harry Temple III Leadville

Buy a gun; just don’t load it Re: Jan. 7 Herald Democrat guest column, “Time for editors to arm themselves?” by Barbara Selvin. Every time I read Continued on page 5

Guest column

Attending college now possible by Carrie Besnette Hauser President & CEO Colorado Mountain College Last week, in the Glenwood Springs central administrative offices of Colorado Mountain College, something special happened. Roughly 30 of our employees volunteered their time over lunch to fold, stuff and prepare nearly 2,000 personalized letters for mailing. These letters are a ticket to a college education for our local students. They are a promise to each and every graduating high school senior. These “President’s Scholarship” letters offer automatic admission to Colorado Mountain College and $1,000 toward the first year at our college. The goal of this program is to invite every graduating senior to think about and plan for their future. The funding is

an incentive to help students focus, plan and prepare. This is the second year of this initiative, one we hope to continue for years to come. The President’s

Scholarship program is one way of returning on the investment that our Continued on page 5

Herald Democrat

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A Colorado Press Association, Society of Professional Journalists and International Society of Weekly Newspaper Editors award winner

results of our WEBSITE POLL Jan. 13-26, 2016 Where do you do the majority of your grocery shopping? Lake County Chaffee County Eagle County

32.1% 13.2% 11.3%

Summit County Other

Have your say at

w w w. l e a d v i l l e h e r a l d . c o m

* please note survey results are not scientific and are used for entertainment purposes only

26.4% 17%


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