It was almost amusing to see Boulder City Council members suddenly get up tight about appointing former councilmember Crystal Gray to the city Planning Board.
Why the sudden crisis of conscience, especially about something so minor? It’s not like councilmembers seem to be that concerned about other, more serious conflicts of interest, like having the city attorney they hire and fire also being the one to police them — and more often, absolve them — regarding appearances of impropriety. Or about being required to accurately complete financial disclosure forms that might reveal their vested interests in decisions affecting downtown properties, just hypothetically speaking.
The appointment of a former city council member like Gray — as long as she doesn’t have any conflicts of interest of her own, or with sitting councilmembers — seems pretty innocuous, considering the other questionable situations that we have caught councilmembers in over the past year.
Maybe this knee-jerk reaction stems from a sense of guilt spawned by past transgressions, like failing to be completely forthcoming about one’s income and former business partners … not to name any names.
As far as we’re concerned, the appointment of a recent city councilmember to a city board probably translates into an infusion of institutional memory and knowledge that would only benefit such a group.
At any rate, we applaud the council’s sudden scrutiny of its ethics. We hope councilmembers start extending the same scrutiny to other areas of its dealings with city business.
GET OUT, GUNS BLAZING
Gov. John Hickenlooper signed two gun-control bills into law March 20, requiring background checks for private gun purchases and banning ammunition magazines that hold more than 15 rounds.
That second bill was the one so strongly opposed by Magpul Industries, the Erie-based ammo maker that said it would leave the state if the bills became law.
Well, see ya.
It’s a terrible shame for Magpul’s 200 employees, but it’s an encouraging sign for any of us who want lawmakers to pass laws they believe are right and not bow to threats from corporations. Hick deserves accolades for staring down a corporate interest and not blinking — especially since he’s keeping his eyes so firmly shut on fracking.
Of course, not all of Magpul’s 200 employees will lose their jobs. Only the actual factory workers, the ones who didn’t make the threats in the first place.
Magpul will start manufacturing outside Colorado soon, The Denver Post reported.
The thing is, when you insist on making magazines with more than 15 rounds and your corporate slogan is “Unfair Advantage,” you’re kind of trying to profit directly from the idea of firing your gun at another person. Or did you mean an unfair advantage against a deer?
Either way, it’s hard to count Magpul as a very painful loss.