Our community values open space and wildlife; that’s why most of us choose to live, work, and play in Jackson Hole. It is also why preserving and protecting our area’s ecosystem is listed as our community’s highest priority in the Comprehensive Plan.
As so many people pointed out at last month’s “22 in 21: State of the Environment” conference, the Comprehensive Plan lists hundreds of great ideas our community could use to achieve our shared vision of a better future.
One of these great ideas is to fund and build safe wildlife crossings on our roads. A network of wildlife crossings in Teton County could reduce wildlife-vehicle collisions by 90%. Additionally, making it safe for wildlife to cross the roads is good for habitat connectivity, which makes wildlife and habitat more resilient to the effects of climate change.
Funding safe wildlife crossings is just one example of a project that reflects our community’s priorities. We pride ourselves on our ecosystem stewardship, and when given the opportunity, Teton County voters consistently choose to fund the projects we care about.
That’s why it is so important that we hold our elected officials accountable right now and demand the opportunity to vote to fund projects that reflect our community’s values and priorities. Whether it’s funding wildlife crossings or allocating a small percentage of the Community Priorities Fund toward the establishment of a “wildlife and open space program,” we deserve the opportunity to vote on projects that reflect our shared vision for a better future.
When the Town Council and County Commission discuss the Community Priorities Fund at a Joint Information Meeting on April 15th, we can’t allow them to forget about conservation and open space. While it is important to fund our community’s other two priorities, housing and transportation, we can’t leave out our highest priority – the ecosystem and wildlife.
Write your elected representatives today and ask for the opportunity to to fund wildlife and open space projects, like wildlife crossings. We deserve the option to act on our values.
Click here to send an email to the Town Council and County Commission.