How fortunate we are

Dear Editor,

On Tuesday, December 10, just as the Crestone End of Life Project’s monthly meeting ended, long-time volunteer member Rainbow Adler announced that she felt unwell. Shortly after, Rainbow fainted and it became clear that something was seriously amiss.

We called 911, and before long our local EMTS showed up: Chris Botz, Ivan Lakish and Robin Durrance. How grateful we were for their knowledgeable and compassionate care! They whisked Rainbow off to SLVRMC hospital in Alamosa—she was delighted to be traveling with friends and familiar faces.

How fortunate we are, in this community, to be served by these skilled and caring personnel.

Whether EMTs, volunteer fire fighters or Mountain Rescue volunteers, they respond to every need without bias: like the warming rays of the sun.

With sincere appreciation,

Stephanie Gaines, Rainbow &

Bob Adler, and the Crestone

End of Life volunteers


Charter School solar system credit correction

Dear Editor,

In the December Crestone Eagle (pg. 4), Beaudin Ganz Consulting Engineers Inc. was credited with designing the solar thermal heating system. A look at the history of how it came to be will clarify the record. The original heating system proposed and designed by Beaudin Ganz was in fact a massive ground-source mechanical heat pump system. The school board favored a more sustainable solar alternative. Literally at the eleventh hour when the board was “signing off” to the architect, three local solar supporters came forward and advocated for a new unique solar design concept conceived and developed by Crestone solar expert Michael Wasserman. To his credit, Jake Blevins, engineer for Beaudin Ganz, grasped the concept and was willing to “go out on a limb” and support the new design. A productive collaborative relationship developed between Michael and Jake. The rest is history and the system has been in operation since Sept. 2013.

Were it not for Michael Wasserman’s new concept of long term ground-coupled heat storage with direct coupling of panels to slab, this system would not exist. Michael conceived it, built several small systems over the years to refine it, and arrived at the final design. Jake, who took the design and drew up the working plans, said “His efforts and very specialized skill set/experience has been instrumental  (nothing short of crucial) in the success of the project.” Long term storage of solar heat and unusually high efficiency are the principal virtues of this award-winning solar thermal system.

Vince Palermo


Out of the blue

Dear Editor,

Many folks see real concern in the state of the Baca Grande Property Owners’ Association. This letter suggests a perfection in politics gone awry.

Do you feel Crestone has a destiny?  The crown chakra of our planet? Whatever the nomenclature, you know that we live in an extraordinary community . . . in extraordinary times.

The greater the fate/fortune of Crestone, the more necessary that we all come face to face with that which deeply needs to be healed—if, indeed, this is the place where ideas of commonality, of great humanity and unity of spirit are birthed, modeled and disseminated. We are called to experience at least a representative portion of what needs to be re-formed in the world: Healers can heal only what they themselves have endured.

The Baca Grande—devised by developers who never set foot here, who from aerial photos greedily plotted the land, with zero sense of community—has as default governance the POA for the Baca . . . and it hasn’t worked in 30 years (despite many worthy efforts).  Such duration of failure breeds depression; with no way out of confinement, depression turns toxic; and toxicity nurtures thoughts of suicide—a stage perhaps represented in our current situation.

This letter is a-politically penned at the crux of a new year, at this auspicious time in Crestone’s history, to bear a simple message: All that Crestone is points to one understanding—that any divided government will fail to allow Crestone’s highest destiny to unfold.

Ergo, let it here be asserted and proclaimed that Crestone will enjoy a unitive government.  One governing body for all that is called Crestone and all that is called the Baca will indeed be enacted.

However out of the blue it may seem, let it be—as if our one governance has already happened—here stated as fact: The unity of our community is a given, deserves the highest attentiveness and diligence, and constitutes our greatest asset.

This urge is not, at this seemingly dark hour, just rising. It announced itself when the grandmothers sat in the buckets of the big cats that otherwise would have dug for gold back in the early ‘90s, ruining our aquifer with arsenic.  It was in strong expression in our 1995 “Future Search Conference,” and again manifested with insight just two Januaries ago in the Crestone-Baca Holistic Living Alliance.

Energy precedes form.  Nature unfolds precisely in this way.  The energy for vision, for leadership, for resonance is already present. How long it might take to be enacted in the halls of government is not within the scope of the hearts and mind of those who, reading this affirmation, are recognizing that the graceful force of indivisibility can be neither diverted nor stopped.

To be clear: The map (we’ve been shown) is not the territory, no problem is solved on the level of the problem, and what seems unsolvable is precisely where re-visioning arises. If even a handful of persons are reading here an announced accuracy of what must be set into place—for untold benefit, for harmony without limit—then there is no possibility that such altruism will fail to be the coherence guiding our singular community.

William Howell


Congrats on 25 years

Dear Editor,

We would like to congratulate The Crestone Eagle on 25 years in business! We appreciate all you do for us and the community.

Thank you so much.

From all of us at

The Haidakhandi Universal Ashram


Local school money going out-of-town

Dear Editor,

You’d think that if the Moffat School District was really appreciative of the local voters’ recent approval of measure 3A they wouldn’t immediately begin hiring out-of-town firms such as Consilium Partners, a Denver company, to begin work on the new school. There are several local and very experienced residents here who could have, if given the chance, offered equal if not better services to the district and because they are local would not charge per diem, lodging, and trip reimbursement fees thereby saving  the school district even more money. So again, just that much more of our money going out-of-town because of two-faced policies and no real interest in helping community job creation and boosting the local economy.

William Hauser


School response

Dear Editor,

The concern for hiring local firms versus out-of-town firms is something the district is both sensitive to and conscious of, as we go through this exciting time. Due to the fact that 73% of the funding for the school is from a state grant, the Board of Education is required to follow state procurement procedures. These procedures are instated by The Colorado Department of Education who puts great effort into ensuring the process of hiring firms is fair to both the firms and the tax payers. This process is public and open to everyone including residents of the district.  Our first priority when hiring any firm (from owner representative to subcontractors and suppliers) is to have qualified firms so that the taxpayers get the most from the money spent.  The qualification review and interview process when hiring firms is lengthy and the district would be happy to meet with anyone to discuss the details further.  A benefit we see in having a Denver firm is the proximity to the Colorado Department of Education and the project design team, for the weekly project meetings with the Department of Education that are required to take place in Denver.  The lead team member for Consilium Partners is a San Luis Valley native who graduated from Sanford School and attended Adams State College; with the majority of her family in the San Luis Valley, we are not spending fees on lodging and per diem is minimal.

As hiring continues for the project, a focus will be made on local subcontractors and suppliers; however, we will continue to ensure all firms are qualified as required by CDE.  We will continue to inform the public, via newspaper, community forums, and on the school website, about the upcoming construction project and encourage any and all subcontractors and suppliers to be active in any discussions with the selected general contractor.

Residents are encouraged to attend the next community meeting January 22 at 5:30 in the Moffat School cafeteria to provide feedback on the new building.

Kirk Banghart

Superintendent of Schools

Moffat Consolidated School District #2


Sensible conclusion?

Dear Community,

I write this letter to see if common sense can prevail in the most recent lawsuit filed by BGCAN members. Two of the four plaintiffs, Bruce McDonald and Nigel Fuller, are members of the current board of directors. They are suing the Baca Grande Property Owners’ Association (POA), Russell Schreiber, Bill Folk, me and the lawsuit also names POA’s “Board of Directors”. Their lawsuit states that board members must hold an undivided loyalty to the POA. How can you have undivided loyalty to the POA when you’re suing the board? Since McDonald and Fuller are two of the five members of the board, they are suing themselves.

McDonald and Fuller have requested that the board hire an attorney to explain the judge’s orders related to their lawsuit and to defend the POA for the lawsuit they filed. Thus, McDonald and Fuller are using POA membership dues to pay for an attorney to provide them with legal advice. The same attorney is supposed to defend the POA from the lawsuit which those two directors filed.

This is absurd and a gross waste and misuse of POA funds. The latest lawsuit recites a section of the governing documents that says assessments “. . . shall be used exclusively for the general purposes of the Association.” How does hiring an attorney that gives advice to the board, including two plaintiffs currently suing the POA, do that?

What’s even more bizarre is that the entire lawsuit is unnecessary. McDonald and Fuller are acting with President of the Board, Robert Garnett. Their loyalties to each other are laid out in multiple places in the latest lawsuit. Since these three individuals are a majority of the board, they can accomplish by a board vote anything which the court might do after months of litigation and thousands of dollars in attorney fees.

The outcomes the lawsuit seeks include changes that this majority can make at any time with a vote. For example, if the new board wants to change its stance regarding the Crestone Emergency Services District, it can vote and do so. The new board can change contracts or call a special members’ meeting to remove directors. The board can change election procedures. If the board wants to make a public statement to the POA membership, as set forth in the latest lawsuit, they can do so.

The community should demand explanations as to why these people insist on going forward with a lawsuit. Are they going to spend all of their time and your money pursuing a lawsuit, or are they going to turn to the important governance issues facing this community?

In addition, Garnett has requested that the appeal filed with the Colorado Court of Appeals on behalf of the POA for attorney fees during the previously dismissed lawsuit, by the same plaintiffs, be withdrawn. This appeal should go forward because it may allow the POA to recover a $5,000 deductible from McDonald, Fuller, Janie Thomas and Diane Dunlap.

Hoping for a sensible conclusion,

Treat Suomi