Letter: Forget the Pueblo West “city” idea
The idea of incorporating Pueblo West as a city has recently reared its head, again. This time, it comes in response to all the pot shops Pueblo County has licensed in Pueblo West. Some arrogant elites even propose that Pueblo West be set up as a combination city and county. What a fanciful idea from those who would set the rest of us up to support their grandiose ambitions.
Incorporating Pueblo West as a city isn’t a good idea, and it’s not the answer to the handwringing over pot shops. Pueblo County controls planning, zoning and licensing. Pueblo West has no such authority. Incorporating Pueblo West as a city now, to gain such authority, would just add another layer of government and impose higher taxes on Pueblo West citizens. And it wouldn’t eliminate the pot shops. Those businesses have already established legal rights to operate here. If people who are now clamoring for the Pueblo West metro board to do something about all the pot shops had early-on petitioned the county before or as licenses were being issued, maybe they could have made a difference.
County Commissioners Terry Hart and Sal Pace attended a Pueblo West metro board meeting several months ago in response to complaints being made at metro board meetings about pot shops being licensed in Pueblo West. One telling revelation they made at that meeting was that absolutely no one from Pueblo West showed up at the hearings that were held as licenses were being considered and issued. Yes, Pueblo West people are showing up now, but it’s a little late for licenses already issued.
Pueblo West metro board member Mark Carmel has the right idea about petitioning Pueblo County to reserve three seats on the county planning and zoning board to be filled by Pueblo West citizens, and for sharing with Pueblo West the taxes Pueblo County derives from marijuana sales in Pueblo West.
We already have and pay dearly in taxes for access to Pueblo County government. Unless Pueblo West citizens want to face paying a lot more in taxes to gain controls Pueblo County already has, and has already exercised relative to the location and licensing of marijuana sales, forget the idea of incorporating Pueblo West as a city. Take your complaints and your demands to your county government. You are owed a response.