As Ridgway’s newly re-elected mayor, I want to offer up my heartfelt thanks to everyone that voted in last week’s election. It’s humbling, and gratifying, to see democracy in action. I’ll never take it for granted.
Of course, with no contested Town Council seat on the ballot, the big issue was the RAMP bond issue. I felt was a heartening vote of confidence to have it pass by such a wide margin. I imagine the question on many people’s minds now is: “what next?” I’d like to take a stab at answering that question.
With the bond issue passing by more than 3 to 1, you’d think I’d be confidently predicting clear sailing throughout the several-year process ahead of us. The truth is, I know there will be many tough choices and challenges ahead, and that the business community in particular is rightfully concerned about the specifics of that process. Staff, council and I are all acutely aware that the actual construction period will be an extremely burdensome time for Ridgway, and particularly for the businesses that need every customer they can get in these still-shaky economic times. That’s why it will take the entire county, if not region, to work together to support Ridgway’s businesses throughout the process. If there was ever a time to shop locally, this is it!
It’s important to realize that construction is still almost two years away. Between now and then there will be lots of details to be hammered out, agreements to be negotiated with CDOT, and phasing and schedules to be planned. As always, there will be ample opportunity for everyone who thinks of Ridgway as their home, whether you can vote here or not, to have a voice in these critical discussions. Business owners should plan on staying involved, especially in the phasing dialogue, as that will be your opportunity to share ideas about how best to ensure the project proceeds with as few negative impacts as possible.
As happened with the fitful process that we went through to get this bond issue approved, staying engaged and speaking up is essential. I promise that all of us at Town Hall will continue to work tirelessly to make sure everyone has a voice as we wend our way down this exciting and complicated path.
Thank you all for being part of what makes Ridgway the amazing place that it is. Let’s keep working together to make certain it grows into an even better future.
- John Clark, Mayor of Ridgway
Category: Letters to the Editor