by Ralph Routon
As the campaign for the 2011 municipal election began, we at the Independent initially built our coverage plans around releasing our endorsements in our March 17 issue.
That's what we've been telling candidates and others, as we've made our way through the usual process of sending out questionnaires and then following up with in-person interviews as needed.
Those interviews wrap up Tuesday morning. But after seeing the parade of endorsements from other sources — such as the Greater Colorado Springs Chamber of Commerce, the Housing and Building Association of Colorado Springs, the local police and firefighters, and then the Gazette, we began to wonder if waiting until March 17 might be too long. If ballots are going out, and voters already are considering other groups' choices for the city's elected leaders, perhaps it's not the best thing to wait that extra week.
Then, when our planned cover story for this week began pushing the deadline, we made a quick decision. That cover story can wait a week, until March 17.
And those endorsements can go into print now.
That means our issue Thursday, March 10, will become a virtual encyclopedia of information for this city election. We'll have the Citizens Project's eight-page insert, giving answers from candidates for mayor and City Council to its questionnaire. Ahead of that, we'll provide our endorsements.
Yes, there will be more pre-election forums in the weeks before the actual "Election Day" (some now are calling it "Counting Day") on Tuesday, April 5. But as tremendously important as this election is, we simply feel that we can't be too early in sharing our input with voters. We'll have our choices for mayor, the five at-large City Council positions, and the Council races in Districts 2 and 3.
So it might be smart to look early on Thursday for this week's Independent at our 1,000-plus distribution points around the area. And if you can't find one, you can always pick one up at our offices, 235 S. Nevada Ave.