So, just when you thought there was nothing more to say about the recently defeated 2A Tax on Sugary Drinks, Watch reporter Samuel Adams penned yet another article which was placed on the front page of the newspaper.
As such, I have a few issues with Mr. Adams’ article. Firstly, unless otherwise specified, front-page stories are normally reserved for news articles rather than those of opinion. In my estimation, Mr. Adams’ article had an obvious bias favoring the Kick the Can Telluride group and his writing would have been more appropriately classified as a “commentary.” He spent the majority of the article rehashing the KTCT point of view, along with multiple quotes from those in favor of the tax, while not offering any voice from the opposing group. Mr. Adams also attempted to vilify the “No on 2A” group by referring to them as being supported by lobbyists with strong ties to the beverage association, as opposed to KTCT who was supported by a philanthropic group. Little mention was given to local merchants, most of whom were vehemently opposed to the tax.
Equally troubling was Mr. Adams’ comments related to one of the founders of KTCT, Ms. Elisa Marie Overall. He noted in glowing terms, along with self-serving quotes from Ms. Overall how she donated “$1,500 of her money to the campaign.” What Mr. Adams neglected to mention was the fact that Ms. Overall was paid a salary for her involvement in KTCT. According to required campaign financial reports, for the reporting month of September alone, Ms. Overall received $6,223. Given that, I’m not sure that the expression, “return of income,” as opposed to “donation,” would have been more appropriate.
For Mr. Adams to have omitted financial information that was in the public domain is either disingenuous if he had the report, or incompetence if he didn’t. As Ms. Overall has chosen to place herself in the public arena having founded KTCT, in my opinion, to be paid for supporting a tax that was to fund a program that she is paid to run, to solve an obesity problem that doesn’t exist in Telluride is, well, let’s just say, transparent.
– Harvey Roisman, Telluride