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2013 Municipal Election Guide


Boulder: pg. 1-2

Broomfield: pg. 3-5

Lafayette: pg. 6-7

Longmont: pg. 8-10

Louisville: pg. 11

Thornton: pg. 12

Westminster: pg. 13-14

(i) = incumbent


Boulder City Council

Andrew Shoemaker

Former chair of the planning board, Andrew Shoemaker is a business lawyer who fights for green causes: working for Wolf Creek Ski Area to scale down a large development, suing the city of Black Hawk when it banned cycling through town and working to bring USA Pro Cycling Challenge to Boulder. He wants a free bus service in town, and boasts a long list of endorsements he’ll use to make Boulder affordable and attractive to families. “We talk about things a lot,” he says about council, “but how much do we get done?”

Ed Byrne 

This land use attorney is a former lawyer for the city and was Director of Operations for Colorado Ski Country USA, Byrne has wide-ranging and passionate opinions on everything in local and national politics and beyond. He is especially concerned about the widening income gap in Boulder, and worries that working-class folks are being squeezed out by Boulder’s high rents, property values and high cost of living. He led the way to redesign the carriage house behind the First Congregational Church to create a home for Bridge House, a social service provider, using his expertise in land use and city planning to get church, city and neighborhood groups to work together on the redesign.

“Grateful” Fred Smith 

An exceptionally endearing candidate who has run unsuccessfully three times before, this landscaper and manual laborer is looking out for the little guy: he supports raising the minimum wage in town to $10 an hour, giving out free bus passes to residents and lowering the cost of a bus ride to 50 cents for everyone else, as well as lowering the drinking age to 18 and instituting a progressive income tax in Boulder.

 John Gerstle 

A Boulder native with degrees from CU and MIT, he has had a wildly varied and successful career, serving as Resident Advisor to the Royal Government of Bhutan. Negotiated agreements for large hydropower projects in several countries. He is the chair of the county planning commission and helped revise the county’s comprehensive plan. He helped introduce techniques to control the county’s mosquito population. He has an independent consulting practice in environmental and natural resource management and has been involved in “fracking”-related issues; natural gas drilling is a big issue in Colorado, and Gerstle knows the subject well.

 Jonathan Dings 

A strategic planner for the Boulder Valley School District, he works to chart the progress of all students, but especially those from low-income families. [working to improve education]. Chairs the Human Relations Commission, which works to provide services to make the city livable for low-income families and prohibit discrimination and support civil rights. He supports clean energy and open space. [What sets him apart is his focus on the humans in Boulder.] He wants to expand the city’s safety net to help low-income workers.

 Kevin Hotaling 

A partner in the web firm AktionLab, he is the ying to the other candidates’ yang. While other candidates are strikingly liberal, Hotaling has some slight libertarian leanings, calling Boulder “over-taxed and over-regulated.” He is the only candidate voicing reservations about a city-owned utility, warning that it is likely to end in bankruptcy. He supports leveraging Boulder’s tech sector to benefit all and supports a vibrant Hill scene as a way to corral unruly student behavior.

 Macon Cowles (i)

A former chair of the Boulder Planning Board, this lawyer spends much of his time fighting for the environment.  He was one of the lead environmental lawyers in the Exxon Valdez case, succeeded in helping de-contaminate a Hispanic neighborhood in Denver that had been polluted, and helped save redwoods in Northern California, among other things. Locally, has worked on many campaigns, including those that successfully purchased parks and open space. As a city council member, he helped pass initiatives, both locally and statewide, to manage growth. He places heavy emphasis on the city’s attempts to reduce carbon emissions, create walkable neighborhoods, and have one percent of the cost of any construction perfect go toward creating art at that project, since he says art nourishes the soul.

 Mary Young 

An engineer [for Bell Labs], and a member of the planning board, she is active on area nonprofits, including Via Mobility Services, a multi-million dollar, private nonprofit that helps seniors and the disabled move around Boulder, and Growing Gardens, which turns urban land into community gardens. She wants to work on energy efficiency. As the only non-Caucasian candidate (she is Latina), she feels she has a unique perspective, and believes that the city’s “invisible population”—Latinos, chiefly—ought to be more thoroughly woven into the everyday fabric of the city.

 Matt Appelbaum (i, mayor)

Matt Appelbaum has served on the executive committee for the local chapter of the Sierra Club. His focuses on the council have been land use, urban design, economic vitality, and environmental protection. He wants Boulder to continue to act as a progressive beacon to the world, to “magnify our impact” and “attract the people that bring creativity and entrepreneurship.”

 Micah Parkin 

She is executive director of 350 Colorado, a climate change organization with the stamp of approval from Bill McKibben, the father of climate-change awareness. An ardent environmentalist, she is opposed to fracking and wants to promote local food sources; for example, she wants to create a local food hub that would connect local farmers with large buyers from restaurants and schools.

Sam Weaver 

CEO of Cool Energy, a waste heat management firm, Sam Weaver’s initiatives are mostly climate and energy-centric. He wants commercial energy codes that would make local buildings more efficient; he supports “massive reductions” in carbon. His knowledge of energy rates could be a big asset as Boulder explores a city utility. A current member of the planning board, he says affordable, diverse housing is important to him.

YS votes Yes for: Andrew Shoemaker, Ed Byrne, Macon Cowles, Matt Applebaum, Sam Weaver

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