What did you do last Monday night? I was at city hall with seven of my peers and the mayor representing you, conducting the business of your city and discussing issues that impact the quality of life in Wheat Ridge. We made decisions about how to improve your parks, spend your tax dollars, keep your neighborhood safe, make your streets work better for everyone, and encourage appropriate growth while supporting what already makes Wheat Ridge great.
Most people don’t pay attention until there’s an issue impacting their backyard (figuratively speaking, although occasionally it’s literal). You’ll probably learn about it from posts on social media or a story in the Neighborhood Gazette, and often the decision has already been made, which is obviously frustrating. Here are a few tips to make sure you’re in the know and able to be heard before it’s too late.
#1: Vote! When your ballot arrives, commit 15 minutes to research local candidates. You can watch the Candidate Forum replay on YouTube, visit candidate websites, and reach out to a politically savvy friend to ask for their perspective. Even if there is only one candidate running (which is likely this year), it’s still valuable to know who they are and their vision for your city. Then, vote on or before Tuesday, Nov. 2, using the convenient 24-hour, drive-through ballot box at City Hall. It’s easy peasy.
#2: Sign up! You can receive notifications of community meetings and receive council agendas using the city’s app. Just search for “Wheat Ridge” on your smartphone then sign up for notifications. Pro tip: weekly council agendas are the best way to track timely issues. You can also visit www.WhatsUpWheatRidge.com to learn more about key issues and provide input.
#3: show up and speak up! When an issue comes up that matters to you, let your elected officials know what you think. You can speak in person or via Zoom at the council meeting. You can also provide comments online before noon the day of the meeting via www.WheatRidgeSpeaks.org. You can directly email or call your council members; their contact information is on the city website. If there’s a public meeting on the issue, attend and provide input. Better yet, bring a few neighbors with you.
One more thing: I want to thank my District 2 co-councilor Zach Urban for his eight years serving our city. Zach has spent approximately 350 Monday nights at city hall and Nov. 1 will be his last due to term limits. It wasn’t until I was on council that I fully appreciated his diligence and contributions to our city’s governance. Zach, may you enjoy your new Monday night freedom.
Contact, City of Wheat Ridge District 2 City Councilor Rachel Hultin at 720-464-7446.