Tea party to host city election forum

Council, mayoral candidates to appear before potential voters

If you go…

What: Craig City Council and mayoral candidate forum

When: 7 p.m. Thursday

Where: The Center of Craig, 601 Yampa Ave.

— The forum is being hosted by the Bears Ears Tea Party Patriots and is open to the public. For more information, call 824-0339.

A decade ago, local resident Jeanie Durham said she had a different view of local politics.

“Ten years ago it didn’t matter to me who was on city council, but it does now,” she said.

Durham, who has been involved with the Bears Ears Tea Party Patriots for about two years, said her involvement in politics stemmed from a simple concept.

“Just the wastefulness — that woke me up,” she said. “That fired me up. The wastefulness, the irresponsibility.”

Durham hopes the tea party can inspire just such a change in attitude in other residents through its continued work throughout the county.

An upcoming forum for Craig City Council and mayoral candidates organized by the tea party is another event driving toward that focus, Durham said.

“I think it is very important and people have woken up and are now wanting to get involved,” she said. “Not in a bad way, we just care. Ten years ago some of us didn’t care.”

The tea party will host a forum at 7 p.m., Thursday at the Center of Craig, 601 Yampa Ave., for the candidates running in April’s municipal election.

Tea party member Billie Jacobs said the city council and mayoral candidates will answer several prearranged questions, some of which may be exclusive to the council or exclusive to the mayor’s race.

The audience will be allowed to ask questions of the candidates if time allows, she said.

Three council seats currently held by Ray Beck, Joe Herod and Byron Willems are up for grabs in addition to the mayor’s position.

City council member Terry Carwile and resident Frank Moe have both picked up packets for the mayor’s position, city clerk Shirley Seely said.

So far, Beck, Willems, Joe Bird, Bill Johnston, Don Jones, Stephen Hinkemeyer and Tony Bohrer have all picked up council packets, Seely said.

However, Johnston recently announced in a letter to the editor of the Craig Daily Press that he would not return his nomination packet, thus dropping out of the race.

Johnston said he did not take the decision to drop out of the race for council lightly.

“I believe to serve my community well, I must answer a friend’s question to me, ‘Bill, where are you needed the most?’” he wrote in the letter. “And at this time I must concentrate on my current responsibilities to the citizens of Craig and the district I am employed to protect.”

Durham said there are several issues she thinks will play a prominent role in this year’s city election and might come up at the tea party’s forum.

“I think we have got some major issues that could cost us — save or cost us — dollars especially if you take the (Moffat County Public) Safety Center,” she said. “All the questions came from (what is being discussed) in the paper — tourism, the safety center.”

Durham said it was an easy decision for the tea party to take an active role in city politics.

“It was the public coming to us and addressing us as individuals and not as a group because there still is not an organized body,” she said of the tea party. “It is still just tax payers and voters meeting once a month and people are just calling us saying, ‘Hey, who do I vote for? What does this guy stand for?’

“I said, ‘I don’t know. Why don’t you ask them direct and find out. It is not for us to decide that for you.’”

Jacobs said the tea party feels like it can help better inform the community by hosting such forums.

“I think that one of the things that our tea party here in Moffat County wants to do is promote education in all of the different areas that pertain to our county whether it is the local city, or the county, or state (issues) that involve us,” she said.

Moreover, Jacobs said the tea party found out through the various forums hosted before last year’s elections there is “so much that the average, everyday person does not know about our politics.”

“By educating them and giving them a chance to be involved, it gives them a better idea of what is happening and what they can do to change it or keep it the same or whatever they want to do,” she said.

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Comments

justthefacts 3 years, 1 month ago

Fact: Billie Jacobs and many other Tea Party people that will tell you how to vote, can not vote themselves in this election!!!!! ( Not residents!!!!! How sad!)

Fact: The Tea Party Members need to educate themselves about the process and people they are trying to change before they inform the rest of the community.

Fact: If Mr. Durham would have been a conservattive political activist during his stint as Chairman of the school board the schools would not have to be cutting $2.3 million dollars now.

Fact: Mr and Ms. Durham now want to hold others accountable when we could not get Mr. Durham to say two words at School board meetings!!!!!

Fact: Mr. Durham did not bring one original conservative idea to the School Board in eight years of service.

Fact: I am glad that people change!! ( Or do they?)

Just The chameleon Facts

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justthefacts 3 years, 1 month ago

Fact: Rod Durham's daughter decided that she should be a chip off the ol block and run for School Board.

Fact: That daughter chose not to run after she had filed the paperwork, election set, and ballots made.

Fact: A needless election was held at an expense of $6000.00 to the school district!!!!

Fact: The Durhams did not reimburse the School District one penny, if they would have, the schools would only have to cut $2,294,000.00 instead of $2.3 Million.

Fact: Tea Party moto: Do as we demand not as we do!!!!!!!.

Fact: People may come and go, but the facts always remain.

Just a sip of The Facts

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csualum 3 years, 1 month ago

Interesting that JTF is the only one commenting on this article. Is he/she/it the only one that has such a negative 'opinion' of these folks? I honestly don't care what their past shortcoming are or may be according to JTF. The Tea Party has a steep road ahead for sure...but they are NOT made up entirely of grass roots ignorant people. I know a lot of these folks and they truly care - and their past does not matter. They are trying to exact change now. I may be completely off base, but I think the Tea Party will continue to make ground. Recent elections were only a beginning. They learned from the naive assumptions that the system worked for honest people...never again. Knowledge is power and their cause is gaining, so look out JTF and other "vote the party' republicans.

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