To the Editor:
I was dismayed by the failure of the Grand County electorate to approve small tax increases to put electronic learning devices in the hands of our students and to sustain Grand County libraries at current levels of service and availability. No less a person than the industrialist Andrew Carnegie concluded more than 125 years ago that a better-educated work force was more effective, and to that end, he was inspired to provide lending libraries for his workers and their families. In addition, he eventually funded the construction of 1,689 public libraries in communities across America. The failure of Grand County voters to allow our centers of education, both libraries and schools, to keep pace with the times will make it difficult, if not impossible, to attract businesses to provide employment and a reason for our children to return to the county after seeking higher education elsewhere.
A glimpse of how our county is regarded by outsiders seeking a place to live in the mountains might be demonstrated by comparison with the nearby community of Steamboat Springs, where the schools are equipped with up-to-date learning technology and the library is full-service open seven days a week. For a recent week, the sales of homes selling for more than $500,000 (an arbitrary figure) in Steamboat totaled an even dozen, in Grand County a paltry one. Clearly real estate shoppers are voting with their feet and their dollars. Come on Grand County, you deserve better and must step up to the plate the next time around or risk stagnation.