Scientist, Nederland, Boulder discussed on Colorado's Morning News with April Zesbaugh and Marty Lenz
Guests, the mayor of Nederland Christopher Larson which is why. We're playing this song because of dead guidance rightly people ask. You about that you've been at the, helm in Netherlands since two, sixteen after serving on the board of trustees. So you came at it from that interesting perspective we are also reading, further into your bio. On my gosh we could talk to you. About space force because you're a planetary scientist at, CU and you used to be a science education. Policy analyst in DC quite a diverse. Background that's right yeah no it's brought me to an interesting. Place in life it's not. Anywhere ever, expected to be politics and. Small town politics, was never a goal of mine but back. In graduate school I was in Saint Louis and my friends I spent a lot of late nights talking politics and realizing. That we're we're making a mistake the scientists weren't being involved. In the process and so, once I got back to Colorado Oh and got settled my friends side was willing to. Put up or shut up and so I, started getting involved in Nederland kind of just led to this and can. Snowball then now, mayor, yeah it's interesting you mentioned that your background because we when we meet the mayors and. They come from diverse backgrounds more so than they do at the national level but the fact, that you, are a scientist? Or having people. Coming out of realms outside of if. You want to say law political, science, that lead and so that is interesting that you. That you, you bring that background to bear, because you deal in the realm of facts so imagining when, you deal with the city of. Nederland that when you talk about things you're talking about we're dealing with the fact based things. You're whether you agree or disagree we gotta deal, with the fact sheets absolutely and a lot of it comes, down for a small town like us a lot of it comes down to budget, sitting there and looking at spreadsheets late at night to try and figure out how are. We going. To. Pay, our public works guys are snow plow guys the. Guys who are out there to AM in February and a. Blizzard keeping the roads clear how do, we get them a raise, so they can actually Ford to live in. Nederland that's a big part of it, and be able to just look, at the numbers and. Say all right you know what here's the. Facts here's how much we brought in here How much we have to spend how are we going to make this, work but for a lot of constituents many issues are emotional from an emotional basis so you probably come back hard with the, scientific facts, about it. How do you try to to work beyond those borders balanced because I mean Netherland is a small town we're about fifteen hundred. Residents which means whenever we have a topic that comes up for our board trustees we have about twenty, five hundred opinions and so it certainly I mean it's you know people. Everyone knows you everyone knows what's going. On. Whether it's the sidewalk so the streets or the local forest or the. Fact that we had to put together a policy on how to Hayes bears and moose when they started making more of an appearance in town people get. Very passionate about it and the best part, is because we are a small community we know each other so it's. Like okay we, understand, the passion here's here's what we have to work with here's the facts and here's how. We're going to try and talk this through as a community and not come down from above, lake a, monolithic force is? It ever to. Get a consensus with scientists are citizens I, you know it sometimes the scientists frankly I. Mean I'm very fortunate we have an awesome board of trustees right. Now I've got six members on the board of trustees several? Which are also, scientists who work at Noah. An car who do climate, science for a living so we have whenever something comes up related to climate, change lated forced health we all in. Our experience is we, know exactly, how, to go, researching, and we all. Go and we bring in articles from nature and. Science and from the forest service and from CS you and see you so we end up with far more information than we actually know what to do with do you have a Ford -able, housing problem like we do here. In Denver is that reached you folks absolately it's I mean, being a small mountain. Town we are, actually, dealing with all the, same issues as the front range affordable housing. Cost of living, climate change traffic budgets but we also then have all the same issues that mountain towns and resort towns have tourism increase the again. Cost of living the fact that our ski seasons are getting We're ski town we have old doors ski area next to. Us and so this is a big worry for us as the last couple of years we've had pretty, Ozzy ski seasons and snow so we're. Dealing with both of them. But, affordable housing, right now is the, number. One thing, we're fighting with. Because being near boulder our prices are going up. Just like boulder which has say the irony is, probably, people went to Nederland thinking it's cheaper to, live there than it is live in boulder but. Now it's like we'll as things get spread out and you, are a Twitter. Town you're in between being in the ski and the thing you split the difference so that's got to be a tough thing to navigate it's absolutely we've seen the house prices house prices in Nederland go up. Thirty forty fifty percent of just last few years hundreds of thousands of dollars increase so. People are getting squeezed out we've been really working on this as a government, I mean there's not a? Lot you, can do as a small town government. But because we can't do it all ourselves we're working with Boulder County, and, Boulder, County housing to initiate, a new project..