It’s winner-take-all in city election, not best-of playoff


It’s winner-take-all in city election, not best-of playoff

If the franchise fee passes, will we have a vote-off? The score will be 1-to-1. Will the winner of 2-out-of-3 elections be considered the will of the people or will it go to 3-out-of-5 if the fee fails to pass this time? Maybe the City Council can use some of the money generated from the USA Pro Cycling Challenge to pay for all these vote-offs. Please sign me, Disenfranchised

Elections are like sports in many ways. A lot of people watch them, the fans are passionate on either side, and there’s always a winner and loser.

But voting isn’t like best-of playoff you see in baseball, hockey or hoops.

If anything, elections are more like football, where a team with a losing season could be a contender the following week.

Recall the lowly Seattle Seahawks in 2010. With a 7-9 record, they became the first team in history with a losing record to win their divisional title and win a playoff game in a nonstrike season.

Or maybe elections are like golf, where mulligans are par for the course, so to speak.

The franchise-fee was voted down earlier this year by 41 votes, but only Durango property owners could cast a ballot.

Round 2 might yield a different result since the City Charter was amended to allow renters to vote.

Imagine that – not being allowed to vote on an issue that affects you simply because you don’t own real estate. How 17th century.

So even if the franchise fee is passed or defeated, we’ve made solid progress by purging classists and exclusionary language from the City Charter.

Maybe that will be a deciding factor for progressive vacationers. Goodness knows we’re prepared for 25,000 of them at once.

And because Durango is the land of second chances, maybe the USA Pro Cycling Challenge will want a do-over, too. That will stir things up more than a recycled franchise fee.

Every day traveling on U.S. Highway 160 into Durango, I see new roadkill. Typically, within a day or two, the carcass is gone. Who picks up the roadkill? What do they do with it? Who should I call if I create roadkill? And, if I injure the animal and it is wounded on the side of road, if I have a weapon (I don’t) am I allowed to put it down? – Gail

Action Line can think of no better question to answer the day before Election Day than one about roadkill.

One can’t help but see the similarities when driving past the frantically waving candidates at busy intersections.

But that doesn’t answer your earnest question.

Let’s turn to our expert in crunched critters, Joe Lewandowski, spokesman for Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

“Roadkill is typically handled by CDOT (Colorado Department of Transportation),” Joe said. What they do with the carcass depends on the situation. In rural areas, it’s often dragged off the side of the road where magpies, coyotes and other foragers and insects can do nature’s work.

If you hit an animal, call 911. If it’s wounded, stay back.

“Injured animals don’t see an approaching human as help. With all that adrenaline, they could get up and charge you or run back into the road and cause another accident,” Joe said.

And don’t shoot the animal. “Let law enforcement or wildlife officers take care of that,” he said.

Then call your insurance company. The typical vehicle vs. fauna collision will cause about $3,000 in damage.

If you do cream an elk or deer and want to harvest the meat, you’ll need to visit a Parks and Wildlife office within 48 hours and get an after-the-fact roadkill tag for your bumper bounty.

November is the worst month for animal accidents, according to CDOT data. So be careful out there.

Deer and elk are all over the roadsides. So are politicians. All are very unpredictable and jumpy.

Email questions to or mail them to Action Line, The Durango Herald, 1275 Main Ave., Durango, CO 81301. You can request anonymity if you think this election could get any more nastier in the final hours.

It’s winner-take-all in city election, not best-of playoff

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