It is with a heavy heart I must apologize to anyone reading this submission. I spent a good amount of time and energy working to get the two Democratic members of the Board of Lake County Commissioners elected. They were both great candidates. It appears as though I may have made a mistake.

Imagine my surprise and shock when my two pages of agenda items regarding such things such as the oppression of Lake County taxpayers’ constitutional rights could not even garner a spot on the commissioners’ meeting agenda! We have all been told repeatedly to submit our agenda items the Friday before the meeting for inclusion on the agenda. This is the first time I have had agenda items deemed too trivial to actually appear on the agenda.

Trivial matters such as, but not limited to, proper legal notice to property taxpayers who protest their assessments via the agency that did the appraisal, the Assessor’s Office. Fastidious issues such as a request that the assessor notify those wishing to appeal the denial of their protest of the actual dates and times of those hearings instead of just the date that such hearings shall begin and end. Unimportant notices such as where a protestor denied is actually supposed to file their appeal. Can we the people get a property tax work-off program in accordance with the Colorado Revised Statutes enumerated at CRS 39-3.7-102? What are the remedies for property owners whose property has been damaged by Lake County snowplows? How about correction of misleading claims on the Road and Bridge web site intended to intimidate those who think it might be a good idea to shovel their sidewalks? Does the Board intend to intervene and stop Site Wise and the other numerous contractors tearing up our streets from blocking school bus transit and cross walks?

Most disappointing was Commissioner Mudge’s insistence that the county does not resolve citizen’s claims of property damage from the snow plowing because it is collateral damage. Besides being false, as the county has repaired property damage considered collateral by road and bridge in the past, this is more importantly yet another violation of our constitutional rights.

The Colorado Constitution requires the property-tax process to be fair and equitable. Statutes have been enacted to ensure this, yet the Assessor’s Office and the County Board of Equalization ignore some of these laws. It seems to me the U.S. Constitution does protect “life, liberty and property” from government actions, absent due process. I refuse to agree that the destruction of our property as long as the commissioners choose to label it as “collateral” is A-OK.

Imagine if the county’s snow removal ends up damaging your fence and your dog gets out. Do not count on the government’s infringement on your property to be a defense in court for the dog being loose. According to our commissioners, pay the fine, shut up and fix your own damn fence!

Scott Morrow

Lake County

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