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Mayor vows limit on freebies

ASPEN, Colo. – Mick Ireland, Aspen’s new mayor, says he’s not accepting schwag to the various events in Aspen such as the Jazz Aspen Snowmass. In fact, he said he will accept nothing more valuable than a bottle of water, although he will attend events to give speeches as a representative of Aspen if called upon. “It’s one thing to attend and another to avail yourself of something of value,” he said.

The Aspen Times says outgoing mayor Helen Klanderud attended a huge number of events, often on passes organizers provided, and initially suggested she may have accepted tickets to the expensive ($1,000 per ticket) Food & Wine Magazine Classic. Not so, it turns out. She paid.

Still, Klanderud readily admitted to some freebies, and defended them as part of the mayor’s job. “Particularly for the mayor, there is an expectation to extend yourself a bit to show support. I’m not suggesting anyone try to follow my schedule, but there is a part of it that goes with the job,” she told the newspaper.

 

Franchise retailers still in limbo

BANFF, Alberta – Banff continues to talk about what place, if any, chain and big-box stores should have there. The talk was triggered by a proposal by Indigo, Canada’s largest bookstore chain, to set up shop in Banff, much to the distress of the existing long-term bookseller.

While Indigo will receive its business license, the issue remains very much alive, reports the Rocky Mountain Outlook. While Banff reserves the right to refuse any business license, the municipality has never refused a business on the basis that it is a chain store.

Meanwhile, down-valley in Canmore, at least one town councillor is talking about trying to create obstacles to big-box retailers. Such businesses as Wal-Mart can’t be banned outright, but zoning ordinances can limit their size and perhaps discourage their presence.

 

Telluride turns mutinous

TELLURIDE, Colo. – The protracted and sometimes disjointed discussion about the future of energy has turned mutinous in Telluride.

There, at an annual meeting of the local electrical co-op, San Miguel Power Association, impassioned local citizens defied tradition — and perhaps the organization’s bylaws — in ordering the electrical co-op to start buying 5 per cent of the utility’s electricity from local sources.