Longmont’s prairie dog situation makes national news

The scourge of Longmont’s Vance Brand Airport, its prairie dogs not its vocal pilots, are now national news. FoxNews did a piece called “Cute, Cuddly Menace”.

…rest of article at Examiner.Com

One of the biggest scandals in our midst

As suggested in the Longmont Times-Call’s call-in, one way to solve the prairie dog problem at Longmont’s Vance Brand Municipal Airport without exterminating them might be to trap them and see how many of the caring people who show up at these public hearings step forward to take them home to keep in their own backyards.

But because these cute little rodents are known carriers of the dreaded bubonic plague through infestation of fleas, that’s not a good idea. And due to their tunneling ability, of course, building fences and putting up plastic barriers to control them are usually a waste of time and money. Prairie dogs not only attract coyotes, which feed on them, but share their burrows with rattlesnakes. Continue reading

For city, airport safety falls somewhere behind prairie dogs

I received the following letter from Longmont airport pilot Doedo Schipper and think it’s important enough to spread around. As many of you know, I have defended the airport in the past against city officials who didn’t have its best interests at heart and screwball neighbors who’d rather it close, destroy its businesses or worse.

An ongoing problem at the airport are prairie dogs. Forget about the politics of it that we hear endlessly at City Council meetings, and look at the safety aspect of it. As you’ll see in this letter, and other places in the past, the proximity of prairie dogs, or any wildlife for that matter, to runways and airplanes is a dangerous mix. Continue reading

Behind The Blue Skies

You may have heard of a donation recently to help keep the Roosevelt Park Ice Rink open this year. The good people at Mile-Hi Skydiving presented the $10,000 check to the city from the Jeff Sands Memorial Blue Skies Fund. You may have also heard of the Blue Skies Neighborhood Park on the southwest side of town, it also was in part a tribute to Jeff Sands. With the anniversary of his untimely passing coming up, I thought some of you would like to know a little more about my friend, Jeff.

Continue reading

A Tax By Any Other Name

Part of the problem of trying to stay as topical as possible (as in matters of current interests, not a cream), is that as time goes by, it may become less relevant. Keeping that in mind, here is an issue in the upcoming (4/10/07) Longmont City Council meeting: Revised Airport Rules and Regulations by Code.

I was watching a recently Tivo’d council meeting when the idea of charging Mile Hi Skydiving (MHS) a $1 per jumper fee came up. The councilmember for my ward, Doug Brown, is a nice guy that I’ve had numerous occasions of having friendly conversations with. His eyes lit up with the possibility of this fee, he was doing some fuzzy math figuring out the thousands of dollars that could come the city’s way. Continue reading