Van Fletcher: Dig for reality, truth
I have been observing an ad from the Steamboat Citizens for Local Control, submitted by Roger Burton. The ad states Margaret Huron is receiving 100 percent of her contributions from unnamed Front Range interests, and Michelle Dover is receiving 75 percent contributions from unnamed Front Range interests.
Tuesday, a letter to the editor from Dierdre Boyd denied teachers’ campaign money is coming from out-of-town and said, “It is local money from local teachers going to local candidates,” and statements to the contrary are “simply not true.”
Who to believe? I went to the Routt County Clerk’s Office to obtain information about the Steamboat Citizens for Local Control. Since 2007, our county clerk does not register or regulate local political committees. I was referred to the Colorado secretary of state.
I obtained a committee detail report from the secretary of state. There is no requirement that such an organization has to report how many members there are in the committee — it can be as few as one person — nor do they have to report their source of finances. The last I heard, a six-by-six ad in the paper costs $250. The Steamboat Citizens for Local Control group has placed many weekly ads in our local paper.
Political committees do have to report the purpose for which they exist. According to the secretary of state, the Citizens for Local Control “supports candidates … who support reform in Colorado public schools.”
Roger Burton is the local registered agent, and the citizen’s group supports three candidates for the school board in prior advertisements. The committees objective is to change high-performing schools in Routt County. To reform our present schools is implied. We need to ask, how does the committee propose to reform our school district, which is one of the best schools in the state?
I emailed Burton on Tuesday and asked where he obtained his information regarding the percentage or contribution given to Huron and Dover and how many members belonged to his political committee. To this day, he has not replied to my request.
The same paper includes an article from the teachers who question Roger Good’s affiliations with reformers along the Front Range. It is obvious Roger Good, who is chairman of the school board, has a poor relationship with teachers. Teachers distrust him. As president of the school board, he cannot continue to be the boss if employees distrust his motives.
It seems appropriate he should resign if, indeed, he affiliates himself with reformers from the Front Range.
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