Williams Releases Statement on Transparency
Open or transparent government is a principle which holds that citizens have the right to access the documents and proceedings or hearings of their government to allow for effective public oversight. Rest assured, this occurs every day in Teller County and has been standard practice for a very long time at all levels. All our hearings and work sessions are open to the public.
In my five years in Teller County government there have been development proposals, for example, that have filled the room with our residents on both sides of the discussion. Each and every member of the public that attends and comes to speak is treated with respect and courtesy and given time to present his or her viewpoint on the matter. We work with folks from all places on the political spectrum. And more importantly, we come to resolutions that reflect our shared values and principles. We certainly do not force pre-ordained outcomes, or "back-room deals" down anyone's throat.
More often than not, I have also seen a very large number of public hearings on a number of routine or reoccurring topics where not a single member of the public is in attendance. Alternatively, when the issue is one that is pressingly important to our citizens, the meetings can be described as "standing room only." Just one example is our county's response to Colorado's 2019 Red Flag Law. I know this because I am a regular attendee at these meetings, participate in them, and don't send my proxies to do my campaign or political bidding.
In all cases, and at all Board of County Commissioner meetings, however, members of the press are present and inform our public through their newspaper and websites. The session is also recorded for the archives and therefore available to any member of the public in the future. Teller County government is transparent and open. For any candidate for public office to state otherwise is simply not true. Remember most of our residents have busy lives, work for a living, and contribute in a positive way to society and they trust and expect their government to perform and they choose elected officials to do so.
Once again, however, my opponent is fanning the flames of a non-existent fire and seems to be bent on spreading divisiveness. Phrases like “back room deals” are being used which simply is not the case in Teller County–-ever.
Here is the truth: The vast majority of our residents--regardless of their political affiliation--trust Teller County Government to carry on its functions with integrity and transparency. Our government is limited by design in its function and purpose but is highly effective and extremely good in providing critical and essential services and support to its citizens.
In my view, a functional, open and effective government like Teller County, allows the people it supports to carry on with their own lives, jobs, and families. The roads are graded and plowed, critical services are provided, taxes collected, law enforcement operates and a fiscally sound budget is passed once again. Not only are our processes open to the public, but those who work for Teller County Government are your friends and neighbors, their kids go to the same schools and they worship in the same churches. As has been my constant theme…there is no place for divisiveness Teller County-–the stakes are far too high in this election.
A good leader is a positive leader that looks for opportunities for collective success rather than opportunities to divide. As your next County Commissioner I pledge to continue an open and transparent county government, and in a way that brings all of us together...not in a way that divides us.