Opinion | Letter: Questioning the county
Tuesday, April 19, 2016:
4 p.m. – I met with the BOCC to persuade them to reverse a decision they had made regarding a multi-million dollar tax rebate to Freeport McMoran. My presentation was scheduled to run for one hour. After around 40 minutes the BOCC had heard enough. They asked me to help Attorney Hassler draft a letter to Freeport explaining GC would not be approving the change in tax averaging Freeport had asked for.
“Why wouldn’t we send that letter?” asked Commissioner Manguso. Manguso had voted against the rebate a month earlier, and now at 5 p.m. on Tuesday she was still adamantly against it. Within hours she changed her mind.
Wednesday, April 20, 2016:
7:21 a.m. – phone call from Manguso claiming she had spoken to someone from Clear Creek who now recognized the folly of defying Freeport. Clear Creek were building a war chest to fight the coming legal battle with Freeport. It was foolish Manguso explained to “poke the bear.”
7:40 a.m. – phone call from Commissioner Linke explaining that although he was still in favor of sending a letter to Freeport, Manguso had changed her mind after talking with Chas McConnell. McConnell had remained silent during the public meeting.
7:56 a.m. – phoned the Clear Creek attorney and asked if Manguso’s fears were justified. I was assured they had no basis in fact, there was no threat of legal action from Freeport.
8:26 a.m. – sent email to the BOCC explaining that the rumor being circulated by Manguso was false.
1:22 p.m. – call from Manguso, angry her rumor had not been kept secret. Manguso stated that although she now accepted the rumor was a lie she intended to stick with her refusal to retract the rebate.
Earlier this year I put this timetable to the BOCC. I was continually interrupted by Manguso who accused me of lying. I explained that I had evidence to prove my assertions. “I would like to see that evidence,” Manguso demanded.
Last Tuesday I asked BOCC for an opportunity to present the evidence and defend myself against Manguso’s defamatory accusations. They refused to allow me that opportunity.
To this day the BOCC are not able to estimate to the nearest million dollars how much this rebate has cost county taxpayers.
Peter Ralph, Grand County
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