Editorial: Council vs. wild | CraigDailyPress.com

Editorial: Council vs. wild

The alleged problem of deer within Craig city limits has been a widely discussed community issue in recent weeks, with those weighing-in ranging from the politically-involved to those less civically minded.

Should the Craig City Council move forward with a proposal to kill the deer — as suggested by the Colorado Division of Wildlife — you can bet the chatter won't stop there.

On Tuesday night, our city council members are scheduled to discuss the DOW's three-tiered plan for eradicating city deer that a vocal minority has labeled a nuisance to property and potential safety hazard.

Instead of listening to the DOW and the minority who want Bambi and family taken out, the Editorial Board contends the city should listen to what seems to be the majority opinion — and coincidentally one of reason — of the community:

Increase the fines for residents who feed deer, but otherwise leave them alone.

The animals are a signature aspect of living in Craig, and ideas of wiping them out are foolish, a waste of government time and resources, and an aggressive, hostile step in the wrong direction.

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There is simply no positive outcome of this situation, the Editorial Board contends, if the council proceeds on its current course.

Board members appreciate city officials responding to the concerns of a few citizens opposed to the deer's presence in the city, but most residents want the animals left alone.

How about the council responding appropriately to them?

There's at least one council member who is thinking along the right lines. Jennifer Riley's comments in Friday's Craig Daily Press are reassuring:

"I don't think we should treat aggressive dear any differently than we treat aggressive dogs," Riley told the newspaper. "I think if there are aggressive situations with deer, those should be dealt with. But, like with dogs, I don't think there needs to be a blanket extermination of deer."

Sensible words, and we're betting at least she votes reasonably on this issue.

The Editorial Board is hoping she isn't the only one. This issue has had enough attention now and for several years to come.

It's time for our city officials to get back to what they've done a good job of doing lately — running the city efficiently — rather than shooting themselves in the hooves with a controversial decision that will only make a few people happy.

Our View

The Craig City Council’s consideration of a Colorado Division of Wildlife proposal to eradicate deer inside city limits appears not only contrary to the community’s wishes, but also a waste of government time and resources. The Editorial Board’s advice to the council: Don’t shoot yourselves in the hooves by giving the deer dilemma more attention. The DOW proposal can only end badly.

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