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Forum Post: Occupy Aspen leader regroups in freedom of speech case with billionaire owned Aspen Skiing

Posted 4 years ago on March 8, 2016, 2:34 p.m. EST by skiaspen50 (27)
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Former ski instructor Lee Mulcahy’s attorneys have taken over his 3½ year old dispute against Aspen Skiing Co. with an amended lawsuit that contends his constitutional rights were violated and he is owed damages.

Mulcahy hired the prominent Denver law firm of Haddon, Morgan and Foreman in March after he represented himself in the litigation for a couple of years. Attorney Ty Gee filed an amended complaint against Aspen Skiing Co. on March 26 seeking a court declaration that Skico violated Mulcahy’s protected rights of free speech under the Colorado Constitution. Mulcahy is seeking an injunction prohibiting Skico from enforcing a ban of Mulcahy entering any of its property. He is also seeking compensatory damages and legal costs.

Mulcahy is seeking a jury trial. Attorneys for Skico haven’t responded yet to the lawsuit.

Mulcahy was a 15-year employee of Skico and one of the top-ranked instructors at Snowmass Ski Area. He wrote a letter to the editor of local newspapers critical of his employer in summer 2010. That triggered a feud that got nastier over the coming year. Mulcahy was fired in January 2011. Skico said it was over his performance and violation of company policies. Mulcahy said it was because he talked to other ski instructors about starting a union.

Skico banned Mulcahy from entering its property and the federal land it leases for its ski areas when he distributed flyers advertising a meeting over Skico’s treatment of rookie ski instructors. He is trying to get that ban nullified.

Mulcahy also claims in the lawsuit that he suffered damages when Skico fired him for retaliatory reasons.

“On matters relating to employment practices in and around the Aspen area, including its own employment practices, Skico is thin-skinned and highly protective of its interests,” Mulcahy’s attorney wrote in the complaint. “As exemplified by its conduct toward Mr. Mulcahy, Skico moves quickly and preemptively to shut down speech critical of Skico or its many related businesses or speech supporting or containing political content it disagrees with.”




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[-] 3 points by ImNotMe (1488) 4 years ago

Alas consider ... “Hey elites, you’ve divided us long enough. Be fair to us little people OR you’re gonna have pitchforks and guns at your door. Yeah - some of us white trash at .. occupy aspen believe in the N.R.A. too. #Remember the Alamo. Raise your glass to the Old Aspen.” ... posted by Lee Mulcahy on Septrember 2012 on the Institute’s Facebook page, probably from his own FB a/c, which also includes:

''Mulcahy said he didn’t mean to alarm anyone but the Institute took out a restraining order against him."

Finally ... ''Also that year, the U.S. Secret Service agent visited Mulcahy’s home, which was then under construction, after neighbors complained that “Kill Obama” had been written on the outside. Mulcahy at the time said he was not responsible, The Aspen Times reported.'' also culled from:

I really have very li'l idea wtf is actually going on in Aspen - vis a' vis the local & national level. 0.01% (Chicago Crown family etc.) - but 99% Occupy Solidarity to Lee Mulcahy at this difficult time for him. This seems to be another example of the piss-taking & entitled 0.01%'s propensity to bully 99%ers!!

consilio et animis ...

[-] 1 points by skiaspen50 (27) 4 years ago

From Lee Mulcahy: Regarding the poor word choice ---it was a metaphor. I should have used torches!
As far as the "Kill Obama" vandalism that was spray-painted on my house, the LA Times won't let me comment on their article. Typical mainstream media.

[-] 2 points by ImNotMe (1488) 4 years ago

'''Justice' : A Short Rant'' - by Nancy A Heitzeg:

My solidarity to Lee Mulcahy in his trials and tribulations in Aspen - where his First Amendment Rights seem to be an issue. Thanx for the comment below too - which I'm seeing for first time & thus, finally in solidarity & fyi:

fiat justitia ruat caelum ...

[-] 2 points by skiaspen50 (27) 4 years ago

Solidarity with ImNotMe.


Housing authority sues Aspenite Lee Mulcahy By CAROLYN SACKARIASON • DEC 4, 2015 SHARE Twitter Facebook Google+ Email


The Aspen/Pitkin County Housing Authority is suing a prominent local. Carolyn Sackariason reports.

APCHA has filed a lawsuit against Burlingame resident Lee Mulcahy, claiming he doesn’t meet residency requirements to own his home in that neighborhood. The suit alleges Mulcahy has ignored the authority’s repeated requests for proof that he lives and works in the county.

The lawsuit asks the court to rule that Mulcahy is violating his deed restriction and must put the house up for sale. Mulcahy most recently unsuccessfully ran for school board… and has had run-ins with SkiCo, and other prominent Aspen institutions.

. Carolyn Sackariason, Aspen Public Radio news.


[-] 1 points by skiaspen50 (27) 4 years ago

Lee Mulcahy is asking a judge to reconsider a court order forcing the activist to sell his deed-restricted home.

The outspoken Aspen resident filed a motion last week contending that Pitkin County District Court Judge Chris Seldin’s ruling was erroneous for a number of reasons. The motion seeks to have Seldin vacate his June 3 order and issue a summary judgment in Mulcahy’s favor.

Mulcahy’s motion argues that he has met the Aspen-Pitkin County Housing Authority’s requirements that he work 1,500 hours a year in the county to qualify for ownership of his Burlingame Ranch home.

Mulcahy bought a vacant lot, located at 0053 Forge Road, in October 2006. Serving as general contractor, Mulcahy spent the past five years building the single-family residence. He obtained a certificate of occupancy March 1.

But his living situation became clouded by a lawsuit filed by the housing authority in December. The suit, which came after the authority asked Mulcahy in July 2015 to prove his eligibility, successfully sought a court judgment ordering him to sell the home.

Mulcahy’s motion, however, contends he has worked full time as an artist and at other jobs. Additionally, he wasn’t in Aspen to address the housing authority’s concerns because he was doing aid work in Africa both this year and last. A Texas church pastor’s letter, which explains the necessity of Mulcahy’s work in Africa, is an exhibit to his motion.

Seldin’s order noted Mulcahy was in Africa while he could have addressed the housing authority’s proof of eligibility requests last year as well as the ensuing litigation.

“Mulcahy evidently decided to travel to Africa where it was not possible to reach him,” Seldin’s order said. “Mulcahy cannot lay the consequences of this choice at (the housing authority’s) door.”

Mulcahy’s motion says that in addition to being an artist, he currently drives a cab and is a substitute teacher.

“Again, throughout the pleadings, what Mr. Mulcahy has admitted is that having worked the same two part-time jobs for nearly six years, in addition to creating, marketing and exhibiting art, he had no idea that his part-time jobs did not qualify for compliance with the employment requirement until informed by (the housing authority) in the summer of 2015,” the motion says.

Mulcahy once had a full-time job as a ski instructor with Aspen Skiing Co., which fired him Feb. 1, 2011. Skico said it was for performance issues; Mulcahy said it was because he was outspoken about low pay.


[-] 1 points by flip (7101) 4 years ago

gotta love aspen - a great history of resistance and rich people weirdos and freaks. hunter Thompson and the crown family. don't you love the defense family crowns - where would Michele and the girls stay without them

[-] 1 points by skiaspen50 (27) 4 years ago

APCHA wants homeowner to pay $63,254 during appeal by Chad Abraham, Aspen Daily News Staff Writer Thursday, August 18, 2016 Printer-friendly version Email this Story

Mulcahy takes his case to appellate court

An Aspen man who is appealing a judge’s order that he must sell his home should put up a bond of $63,254 if he’s allowed to live there during the appellate process, the Aspen-Pitkin County Housing Authority contends.

Lee Mulcahy is taking the case for why he should retain ownership of his Burlingame home that he built himself to the Colorado Court of Appeals.

Mulcahy wants a judge to stay the order that he list his home for sale, meaning he would be able to stay in the residence, until the appellate decision, something APCHA opposes.

“In his motion for stay, defendant Mulcahy does not even address the jurisdictional issue that is the basis for the judgment in this action, much less any reason to believe that there is any basis for the Court of Appeals to reverse the judgment of the trial court on this issue,” wrote APCHA attorney Thomas Smith.

If Judge Chris Seldin of the 9th Judicial District does grant the stay, Mulcahy should have to put up the $63,254 bond, APCHA’s motion says. That amount includes attorney fees and what the housing authority believes it could get in monthly rent for the three-bedroom, 3.5-bath home until the appellate decision.

“A stay of the judgment in this action prolongs the defendant’s improper use and possession of the property during the pendency of the appeal,” Smith wrote. “This is similar to an appeal by a tenant in a landlord-tenant action which deprives the landlord of possession.”

APCHA won its case at the district court level last week when Judge Seldin denied Mulcahy’s motion to reconsider his earlier ruling in favor of the housing authority.

In that June ruling, the judge found that Mulcahy failed to properly appeal APCHA’s ruling that he had violated guidelines governing his deed-restricted residence. The violations included that he had not worked the requisite 1,500 hours required of Pitkin County residents who live in affordable housing and that he had failed to timely provide APCHA with information regarding compliance it requested.

Jordan Curet/Aspen Daily News The Aspen-Pitkin County Housing Authority, which is trying to force Lee Mulcahy to sell his home, wants him to put up a $63,254 bond if he’s allowed to live in it as the case goes to the Colorado Court of Appeals.

On Aug. 9, Judge Seldin awarded APCHA $15,419 in attorney fees. APCHA’s motion says state law calls for the bond amount to be 125 percent of the total amount of the judgment, or $19,274. APCHA also has the right to recover damages based on the home’s rental value, Smith wrote.

Mulcahy’s 1,912-square-foot home, valued by the county assessor’s office at nearly $800,000, falls within APCHA’s resident-occupied category, the most expensive. The maximum monthly rent for RO housing is $2,932.

“This amount needs to be multiplied by an estimate of the number of months from now to the decision of the Court of Appeals,” Smith wrote. “We believe that a reasonable estimate would be 12 to 18 months. At the low end, this would result in an amount of $35,184.”

APCHA believes it is entitled to 125 percent of that amount, or $43,980, for the total of $63,254. Judge Seldin has not yet ruled on the stay nor whether Mulcahy must put up the bond.

Mulcahy, representing himself, writes in his notice of appeal filed Friday that he has been employed as a property manager, substitute teacher, taxi driver and artist.

He wrote that APCHA ordered him to sell his home that he and his family spent years working on for $180,420, despite the assessor’s valuation.

Cindy Christensen, APCHA’s deputy director, said Wednesday that that isn’t accurate. The $180,420 figure likely stems from the appreciated value of the lot itself, since Mulcahy never submitted any construction documentation showing the work and final state of the home, she said.

Mulcahy’s grounds for appeal are that Judge Seldin “misapprehended controlling case law on several issues” and numerous admissions, arguments and positions he holds; “misapprehended and applied standards and cases addressing arbitration in lieu of standards and cases addressing administrative proceedings”; and that the judge evidenced clear errors in his factual findings.

“With all due respect, the order is clearly in error and is manifestly unjust,” Mulcahy wrote.


Letter: Other side to the story

Comments (0)


On Wednesday, the deputy director for Aspen-Pitkin County Housing Authority lied to the Aspen Daily News (“APCHA wants homeowner to pay $63,254 during appeal,” Aug. 18).

She said the city of Aspen didn’t demand that my family sell the house we built for $180,481 while we were in rural Kenya.

She didn’t stop with that whopper. She continued: “Mulcahy never submitted any construction documentation.”

The housing authority is out of control. In October, I took both my construction and employment documentation to the deputy director pursuant to an email I received from the qualifications director that would have required the housing authority to accept art as a profession, since she had already disqualified my other two jobs.

Instead, the housing authority’s deputy director refused to look at the construction and employment documentation, simply stating the director had decided to sue me instead, using your tax money.

In addition, the city of Aspen’s comical abuse of power is further illustrated by the fact that the city wants over $63,254 in rent and legal fees on the house my family built ourselves before we can appeal while refusing to allow us to rent rooms pursuant to its guidelines. If you’re confused, you’re not alone: The city of Aspen wants rent from a family’s house but refuses to allow them to rent a room?

The new judge never allowed a hearing or mentioned the reason for the “trip to Africa.” We were delivering used laptops and installing a water pipe from a water well Aspen residents had drilled in 2012 to a newly built medical dispensary. The used laptops were donated by individuals, churches and synagogues in the Roaring Fork Valley and Texas. The pipe was bought utilizing funds donated by generous Colorado and Texas residents in honor of my dad, who had just passed, Edward Lee “Bud” Mulcahy.

To that end, we’re still collecting used laptops for 2017. Drop them off at St. Mary’s, St. Stephens or the Aspen Jewish Community Center, or call me and we’ll come pick them up!

Lastly, we’re having a community barbecue honoring our law enforcement here in the Roaring Fork Valley: the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office and the Aspen Police Department, on Sept. 5 from 3 to 7 p.m. at the “outlaw” Mulcahy house at 53 Forge at Burlingame Ranch behind the Maroon Creek Club. RSVP to 970-429-8797.

Lee Mulcahy

Aspen http://www.aspentimes.com/opinion/23496354-113/letter-other-side-to-the-story