County sees revenue threats

By Hank Lohmeyer

During a work session on Monday, the county commissioners received a heads up on three bills introduced into the General Assembly which, if adopted, would significantly cut revenues to county government.

All three of the bills are being opposed by the government trade group Colorado Counties, Inc., commissioners were told.

In December the commissioners appropriated a record $31.5 million to fund the annual budget for 2017.

In a brief presentation at the work session, county assessor Debbie Griffith said HB 1078 could shave 1.5 percent from the county's property tax income by changing taxing rules for storage units and private airport hangars, Griffith said.

Another proposed bill, SB 009, could cost the county $100,000 from personal property rule changes on exemption limits.

And the proposed HB 1063 could cost the county over half a million dollars in lost property tax revenue from business.

Earlier in the work session commissioners noted possible revenue losses from property assessment rules in the state's Constitution that would impact small counties severely. A possible $400,000 to $500,000 hit to Delta County schools could result, but the lost revenue would have to be "backfilled" by the state which would have to find the money to do so, commissioners noted.