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September 30, 2010 07:04 PM UTC

How to NOT Win Friends in Forested Areas

  • by: Colorado Pols

Democrats would do themselves a favor to spread far and wide the word, in a press release today from liberal coalition Strong Colorado, that SD-16 “Tea Party” candidate Tim Leonard was busted in 2006 for violating a fire ban on his property. SD-16, as Strong Colorado notes in their release, is heavily forested, and severely impacted by the recent pine beetle epidemic.

Says Director Ellen Dumm, “It’s ironic that someone who wants to be in the position of creating policy to protect and defend our natural resources either didn’t know or didn’t care there was a fire ban in effect in his own county.” We know some mountain residents this morning who can look out their window at forests wanting only an errant match to become epic tragedies, who might employ language a little stronger than “ironic.”

September 30, 2010


Contact: Ellen Dumm, 303 810-4370,

Burn This!

SD 16 Candidate Fined for Violating Fire Ban

Those who live in glass houses should not throw rocks. And those who are surrounded by beetle kill trees in the mountains should not light fires.

GOP candidate for Colorado Senate District 16 (Jefferson, Clear Creek, Summit, Boulder Counties) Tim Leonard was fined for violating a fire ban in 2006.  His campaign website lists “wildfire prevention” as one of his top priorities.

“It’s ironic that someone who wants to be in the position of creating policy to protect and defend our natural resources either didn’t know or didn’t care there was a fire ban in effect in his own county,” said Ellen Dumm, director of Campaign for a Strong Colorado.

Leonard’s district is heavily forested and is one of the most heavily-impacted areas of tree bark beetle kill in the state.


36 thoughts on “How to NOT Win Friends in Forested Areas

  1. …Has bravely signed a pledge to shift state funds to higher priorities and away from lower priorities.

    Tim Leonard: Supports prioritizing priorities.

    Now that’s political courage!

  2. … is just dumb.

    Whats next, someone gets a speeding ticket?!

    Ugghhh, looks like its getting to be that nitpicky time of year again.  When its too late to make any substantive policy arguments so campaigns just start sending out press releases for really really trivial stuff.  

    1. If you really think that violating a fire ban in the forest is dumb, I have friends who hope you stay on the fucking flatlands like a good Aggie. Fire bans are no goddamn joke, not even if you’re an antigubbment Teabagger.

      You realized that more homes were lost to a forest fire a few weeks ago than any fire in Colorado history, don’t you?

      Furthermore, a teabagger endangering his neighbors during a fire ban is one hell of a metaphor if you ask me.

      1. First, I am no teabagger, just someone who likes to see an honest debate when we are trying to elect public officials.  I can’t stand the tea party!

        Second, I am no flatlander.  As a western slope kid, I really do not appreciate being lumped in with front RANGE folks like you. 😉

        Third, why so hateful?  Do you really need to talk to people like that? I know you can feel like a tough-guy/girl on an anonymous blog posting, but save it for the next time you are debating your neice about who is hotter: Justin Beiber or the guy from twilight.  

  3. There is little chance that Leonard is going to be satisfactory to the majority of voters in SD16, and Kirkpatrick is a fantastic candidate and will be a great legislator.

    Why in world would you even speak his name this close to mail ballots being delivered?  Are we dealing with a mid-level campaign operative who has a desperate need to justify her existence?

    The effort would have been much better served by emphasizing the strengths of Kirkpatrick and her service as a solid county commissioner.

    Dumb, dumb, dumb

    1. Announcer reads: “Tim Leonard violated a fire ban in 2006.”

      Mountain resident hears: “Tim Leonard is a fucking moron who might burn my house down someday.”

      This is a goooood message. Repeat and amplify.

          1. this in and of itself is not something that prohibits or impedes a person’s ability to serve.  While it is important to follow the laws, I doubt this gains traction.

            I would say the same if a Dem were up on the cross for this type of a violation.  

            Everyone should follow the law, but we ALL have broken laws, and have done so knowingly.  

            I’m sure you have never ran a stop sign, or have ever driven over the speed limit.  All laws, if broken, may have serious consequences.  This just isn’t, in my eyes, embezzlement, drugs, murder, or assult…sexual or otherwise.  

            So…now do you get my point?  I’ve spelled it all out in some detail now, but if you are still having difficulty with reason and rationale let me know.

            1. Your guy gets a pass because:

              1. This probably won’t gain traction, and obedience to the law should always be weighed according to its potential political consequences.

              2. We all break laws, and it doesn’t matter that your guy wants to MAKE laws.

              3. He’s YOUR guy.

            2. This is the same as starting a fire when you have been noticed that starting a fire is dangerous. He could have been charged with 4th degree arson if anyone else’s property had been damaged.

              This is simply arrogance of the highest degree. “I own this forest. I have a slash pile and the cheapest way for me to dispose of it is to burn it. I can get away it with I (probably have before). I’m going to do what I want.”

      1. is probably having a great time kicking Leonard’s ass.

        She would have had a difficult time getting elected if the more moderate Republican won the primary, but the radicals win again, thereby ensuring yet another Democratic victory.


      2. this is why I’m a Republican.  Why would these guys and gals want to debate real issues when they have someone who burned a little something.  WOW…

        For sure a prison sentence is in order…LOL  What a batch of jokers.  

        I’m sure everyone posting has NEVER broken a law or a NOTICE for goodness sakes! LOL  

          1. about Gays, and I don’t give a shit about birth certificates.  If you can show me where I have promoted or condemned anything you are speaking of please let me know.

                1. instead of burning slash piles during fire bans.

                  One group of people are focused on finding solutions and working for a prosperous society.  The other group is focused on power and dismantling our government.  The Republican motto is cycle is: George Bush wasn’t conservative enough so we’ll nominate even less qualified people with more extreme views to do what Bush did in the expectation of getting a different result.

        1. regarding Wildfire Management and sustainable forests including the utilization of forest products by private enterprises.

          Please name one thing that Mr. Leonard has done that shows his commitment to the safety of residents living in Wildland Urban Interface areas or the proper management of our most treasured asset in SD 16, our mountain forests.

          If you’re going to brag about what a bad ass your candidate then you should be able to provide some specific accomplishments that shows that your candidate is qualified to represent this unique area.

        2. who likes to believe his candidate is better simply because he has an R behind his name and real vision or understanding of the issues is unnecessary.

          We’ll debate issues with you anytime nut job.  You just don’t have a fucking clue what they are for residents in this district.  I can tell you coming from someone who has lived in this district for the last 25 years and had my photo boxes by the door for the last month, wildfires are a big deal and burn bans are instituted to prevent accidents because like the fire near Fort Collins there are consequences.  We don’t want private fire fighters or the elimination of slurry bombers and all you anti-government know-nothings can go pound sand.

  4. Every year when fire bans go into effect, there are signs posted just about everywhere saying “FIRE BAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!”.  I pass at least 3 on my way home from work every night.

    And I’m with others who say this will resonate.  This is a district composed of mountain residents who see wildfire every year in communities not far from them.  These are residents who respect and fear wildfire, and have little respect for those who violate the fire codes.

    Jeanne Nicholson is the responsible, experienced candidate in this race.

  5. which makes all campaigns relative, the differences in these two candidates are striking.

    Commissioner Nicholson has been responsible for establishing fire bans in Gilpin County with consultation from the sheriff’s department and the various volunteer fire departments.

    Mr. Leonard giving him the benefit of the doubt doesn’t know when a fire ban is in effect.

    This attention to detail is the difference between these two candidates.  For a district that was well served by Dan Gibbs, Jeanne Nicholson is the candidate who best exemplifies a commitment to sustainable forests and reduced wildfire threats through strategically funded wildfire management programs.

    Commissioner Nicholson increased funding to the county biomass center to handle slash from private property owners so that they wouldn’t try to burn slash on their own.

    Commissioner Nicholson voted for funding for the county Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP) and reviewed and approved the first CWPP in Gilpin County history.

    Because of a county CWPP was implemented, Gilpin County was able to secure a ARRA grant to perform fire mitigation along Highway 119 north of Rollinsville as a designated emergency evacuation exit route.

    Commissioner Nicholson initiated and voted for using a biomass furnace in the new Gilin County Road & Bridge building to help with forest product utilization and the use of renewable energy technology.

    Mr. Leonard doesn’t even know when a fire ban is in effect.

    The voters of SD 16 have a clear choice of who can best represent them and work for resolution of their unique Wildland/Urban Interface (WUI) issues.

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