Help maintain a healthy ag economy

By Mark E. Smith

Dear Editor:

The North Fork Water Conservancy District has a question, #4A, on the ballot for voters residing within the district. Approval of this measure is a win for everyone by helping to keep the ag economy viable and providing for tourism and recreation. Many irrigation companies within the NFWCD have benefited in the past from financial assistance from the NFWCD including the Paonia Reservoir, Lone Cabin Reservoir, Beaver Reservoir, Farmers Ditch, Leroux Creek Water Users, Redlands Mesa Water Users, Ragged Mountain Water Users and Overland Ditch, as well as domestic water systems.

Approval of the measure would allow the NFWCD to continue this assistance by allowing the district to use currently restricted funds, along with their general funds, to continue helping irrigation companies in the district with repairs on aging infrastructure. Approval of the question will not increase taxes, but will allow the NFWCD to accept grants from the State of Colorado, as this is currently restricted by TABOR. By providing financial assistance to these companies, the irrigation systems in the district can be better maintained which promotes a healthy ag economy which in turn flows on to more tourism and also provides habitat for wildlife which promotes more recreation. Some projects also provide flood control which benefits all residents, not just users of irrigation water. The board of directors of the Leroux Creek Water Users Association encourages a yes vote on Ballot Question #4A.

Mark E. Smith
Leroux Creek Water Users Association