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Letters to Editor

Pastime

Dear Editor:

I plead with you to ignore Mr. Wynn Wasinger’s request to republish Mr. Sawicki’s letters. For the past 20 years, my favorite pastime has been needling Mr. Sawicki. His endless rants can be boiled down to three words, namely, I hate Democrats.

Bob Dungan

The Arboles Antediluvian Troglodyte

Welcome mat

Dear Editor:

You are right, Karl, we must put out the welcome mat and let the tourists know how much we appreciate them coming to Pagosa Springs. The Town Tourism Committee (as well as the Chamber of Commerce and the County Tourism Committee) has been working hard to get the word out about what a great place Pagosa is to come and visit. Once here, we must help them to enjoy themselves as much as possible so they will tell their friends as well as come back themselves. From the gas stations, to the stores and restaurants and the Visitors Center, we must welcome the tourists. In fact if you meet someone on the sidewalk that you don’t recognize, they’re probably a tourist. Stop and greet them, introduce yourself and let them know how much you appreciate them visiting Pagosa.

As much as we need and want to diversify our economy, our natural economic driver is tourism.

In your editorial, you asked the question, How can lodgers tax go up, while sales tax revenues continue to go down? I believe I can answer that. I believe it is the lack of construction activity. Circle T has shut down, building permits are all but none, and construction workers are moving out of town. As an example; if we build 100 fewer homes, with an average lumber/material cost of $75,000 per home, that would be a decrease in sales tax of approximately $300,000. Of coarse, that would then be split by town and county.

Thank goodness town lodging tax was up 9.2 percent last year over 2008. That pumped approximately 2.1 million dollars into out local economy. Lodging tax in South Fork was down 10 percent, Durango was down 10.2 percent and Telluride was down some 22 percent. The state average was down 10 percent. It’s not enough to cover the lack of building material sales taxes, but it’s a big help. I want to extend kudos to the 11 hard-working members of the Town Tourism Committee for guiding our lodging tax dollars in a way that has boosted tourism so greatly in our small town. I also want to extend thanks to the Town Council for their guidance and support of the TTC actions. So far this year (2010), the results are even better.

So, please take time today to welcome a visitor. After all, the people of Pagosa Springs are an asset to our community, at least equal to the beautiful mountains and scenery that we all enjoy.

Bob Hart

Chairman

Town Tourism Committee

Redneck

Dear Editor:

My redneck spirits were raised ta see that Mr. Bob Dungan is overflowing with gratitude that Thomas Paine was one of the quick-witted and brilliant Founders who, under God, launched our great nation. Paine would surely relate to the Arboles cavern dweller, “These are the times that try a troglodyte’s progressive soul.”

Albeit a concern: I certainly hope that Mr. Dungan doesn’t lean so far left that his “left” ear polishes the Flounder In Chief’s boots. We do not need to shine the boots of someone with a socialist agenda that currently occupies the Oval Office.

Sure hope that wasn’t too terribly cute with disrespectful truth fer Wynn Wasinger; if so — tough! Welcome ta “Redneck Heaven.”

Jim Sawicki

Farewell

Dear Editor:

The Weminuche Audubon Society (WAS) Board of Directors and Audubon Colorado wish to extend their condolences to the family and friends of Richard Dieterich, 63, of Pagosa Springs. Richard unexpectedly passed away while visiting a local residence on May 16.

Originally from New York, Richard lived in various western communities including Telluride, where he served as postmaster for about five years. As a military retiree, he recently completed veteran services training and worked as a volunteer assistant for the Archuleta County Veterans Service Office in Pagosa Springs. He also served as a fellow WAS board member for the past 11 months, where his rousing enthusiasm and soft-spoken demeanor will surely be missed.

Farewell friend.

Sincerely,

Chuck McGuire, Dottie George, Mike Ward, Diane Lee, Nan Rowe, Pamela Novack, Ben Bailey and Becky Gillette