Maria Colvin: Bedrooms: It’s about fairness
Boulder residents will be able to vote on an important ballot initiative this fall – “Bedrooms Are For People” (BAFP). This would relax Boulder’s current exclusionary limit of no more than three unrelated people allowed to share their home, no matter how many bedrooms it has.
The current rules are unfair and counterproductive. In a place like Boulder, with its high housing prices, the way that people who aren’t rich (or haven’t owned a house for decades) get by is by having roommates. Boulder’s zoning makes this normal, everyday act a violation of the law.
Repealing occupancy restrictions is something that should resonate with liberals, given the clear discrimination against the young, the poor, immigrants and refugees who often survive by doubling up families. And it should resonate with conservatives – what could be more intrusive government overreach than telling you who you are allowed to live with?
In my 20s I lived in a co-op house which enabled me to work on my dissertation without going into debt. I now teach at CU. Our (overoccupied) house was a center of community engagement. We coordinated the neighborhood ecopass and were a distribution point for a local farm where 20 people picked up fresh produce once a week. One roommate was a precinct captain, another checked regularly with a disabled woman across the street.
My current neighborhood has changed dramatically in the 22 years I’ve lived here. Bungalows with kids running between houses are increasingly being scraped for giant houses barricaded behind fences and security cameras.
While the Bedrooms for People is not a panacea – I believe it will bring greater diversity and community to our city, lessen traffic by reducing in-commuting, and provide much needed housing for families that are currently priced out by Boulder’s ever-rising housing costs.
Valerie Stoyva: Bedrooms: It will destroy us
Neighborhoods and communities should be reimagined, not destroyed. Bedrooms Are For People could finally destroy my neighborhood, the Hill — not to mention Martin Acres, Goss Grove and Aurora 7.
Boulder already has the highest number of renters under the age of 21 in the nation, and CU plans to expand from about 30,000 students at present, to 50,000 by 2030. If BAFP passes, the neighborhoods above will simply get whacked to pieces like old and threadbare rugs.
Consider: Denver studied BAFP’s model and concluded it would cause inequity. Austin tried it for a year and got rid of it.
Please vote no on Bedrooms Are For People.
Carol Callicotte-Belmon: Deann Bucher: A rare find
People like BVSD’s District E school board candidate Deann Bucher are a rare find – thoroughly qualified, years of experience, and well-versed on all of the issues we are facing. Deann is an award-winning teacher with 30 years of teaching experience, 27 of which were in BVSD. She has lived and worked in East Boulder County all of these years, which would ensure that East County voices are represented on the board. She is endorsed by both the Boulder Valley Education Association and the Colorado Education Association. She has been on the front end of making sure our schools are inclusive to all, regardless of race, gender, and sexuality. She understands the vital role that literacy plays in ensuring that our students succeed. She is also acutely aware of equity issues within our district, what we need to do to address them, and she is committed to resolving these issues. She is a believer in the importance of science and public health, as well as a Gun Sense Candidate of Distinction who will prioritize our children’s health, safety, and access to quality education. We could not ask for a more qualified, more dedicated candidate than Deann. Please vote for Deann Bucher for BVSD School Board, District E.
Nicole LiaBraaten: Beth Niznik: She has depth of experience
As the lead for the Boulder group of Moms Demand Action, I am writing to support Beth Niznik for the BVSD Board of Education. I first met Beth when she approached me to join our leadership team. I was impressed by her desire to make our community safer from gun violence. Soon I realized that this sincerity was matched by dedication. Not only is Beth a Gun Sense Candidate, she is a leader within Moms Demand Action and a strong advocate for the larger Boulder community.
I have watched as Beth has applied the same energy and passion to her school board race. She has gained the endorsement of so many of our community leaders, including many elected officials like Steve Fenberg, Judy Amabile, KC Becker, and Rachel Friend who share her passion for safe schools. She is putting in the work to engage stakeholders on every level, as the role of school board requires.
As a special education teacher, school psychologist, and administrator Beth has had the breadth and depth of experience to grasp, tackle, or understand complex issues like school safety and mental health from a systemic perspective. Beth is also committed to equity in education and serving the needs of the entire BVSD community. She will elevate these sometimes difficult conversations with the same grace she has brought to her work with Moms Demand Action. Beth would be an incredible addition to our school board. I sincerely hope you join me in voting for Beth Niznik for BVSD Board of Education.
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