Alex Hampton: Waiting for explanations

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— To the editor:

This letter is to the city of Craig, Moffat County commissioners and The Memorial Hospital: Why are our local governments and hospital sending money to Routt County?

I overheard a conversation a few weeks ago and couldn't believe it, so I did some research and found out the following.

All three entities are going out of Moffat County to a business in Routt County for food at their Christmas parties.

The city of Craig never sent out a bid request for its party. They went directly to Routt County. Their party is at the Center of Craig, but is being catered by a Routt County business.

The Moffat County commissioners sent out for bids for the county's party, but also chose a Routt County caterer for the party at the Moffat County Fairgrounds Pavilion. Their response: It was less expensive to go out of county.

My response: Did you give the local businesses that did bid on it (there were at least four local caterers) the opportunity to match the bid, or change your menu or other arrangement to keep it in Moffat County? My other question is: If it is so expensive, and you are trying to save the taxpayers money, maybe you find a different way to celebrate your work and not have a Christmas party.

The Memorial Hospital asked the voters for a $30 million mill levy, and they passed it. Taxpayers are now paying it. You are going to get a brand new hospital and new working environment and you give back to the community by also neglecting to accept a local caterer's bid? How many people from Routt County support TMH, anyway?

A recent Saturday Morning Press editorial talked about shopping locally; that for every dollar spent in Moffat County, on average it is spent in the local market six more times. It seems the residents of this community get this by seeing more than 200 people standing in line at Wal-Mart before it opened Friday morning after Thanksgiving. The local businesses also get this as they are opening earlier and staying open later, as asked to help people shop locally.

Why can't our City Council, County commissioners and local hospital, which are supported by our voters, taxpayers and residents, get this?

So, since you three entities chose to not support local businesses to cater your events, you sent at least $10,000 times the six times over, which equals $60,000 to Routt County. You took away money from local businesses and their employees, who live and spend money in Moffat County and gave it directly to Routt County.

It wasn't difficult to find the local businesses that could have done your parties if they had been given the opportunity to work with you:

• Brothers Processing

• The Boardroom restaurant

• OP Bar and Grill

• R&R Catering

• The VFW Steakhouse

• Holiday Inn

The city of Craig, the County commissioners and TMH, all three of you owe the voters, taxpayers, local businesses and Moffat County residents an explanation about why you sent all of that money to a different county when we have very reliable and capable businesses right here that would have bent over backward to help keep your parties affordable and worthwhile.

We will be waiting to hear your explanations. You owe us that.

Alex Hampton

Comments

emery bear 5 years, 8 months ago

Alex...great questions... I will be waiting to hear an explanation...from what you write it sounds like they could have kept business local...of course they could feel sorry for a county with a $2 million deficit ( i am being sarcastic)...emery

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Globe 5 years, 8 months ago

Holy Crap! Why isn't the news paper asking this question? I demand that the CDP follow up on this! I can't believe that all of these governmental groups went across the boarder for their parties. I would like a direct qoute from the Mayor, the County Commissioners, and the hospital administration that says exactly why they would do this! Maybe they should run for office in Routt County next time.

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oldgezzer 5 years, 8 months ago

once again the general puplic is mis-informed. i cant say for the city and the hospital, but on the county's behalf, they went with the most bonafide bid. even commissioner mathers own restaurant was more expensive than who the county chose to cater their party. also it was not paid for with tax payer dollars either. rewards from the credit cards that the county uses paid for the party and the raffle prizes that were given away. so please condemn the county for being frugal. also keep in mind that some of the other caterers may have had other parties to cater to that weekend, or may not be able to handle parties of close to 200 people. oh, and yes i did have a great time and the food was excelent, thank you moffat county.

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emery bear 5 years, 8 months ago

well oldgezzer if they did not use the taxpayer money and used rewards then why not spend more in your own county and go with a higher bid...its not frugal when you use free money...which isn't free we county tax payers paid for those credit card expenses and those in this county deserve to have OUR rewards spent here with our families and businesses. If our leadership won't spend here local neither will the populace...wake up, if you want craig to grow and prosper then do business here and support the local economy...emery

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oldgezzer 5 years, 8 months ago

ebear, there is more to it than just for the sake of doing doing business in the county. if the service and the food is not good quaility, why should the county or the city subject it's employees to it just to keep it local? and to think that our leaders are setting an example to the populace by doing so is wrong. people like myself are going to go out of town to shop no mater what our local leadership does. most people are going to get what they need elsewhere if a business here doesnt have what they need, or get it over the internet. shopping here in craig is only a small factor to make this town grow. a good portion of the work force has to travel to steamboat every day. guess where they buy their gas and the other goods that business' in craig dont have. thanks for your comment, i woke up a long time ago.

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2KG 5 years, 8 months ago

It would be interesting to know how much revenue the people from the Hayden area (Routt County), brings to Craig each year.

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