Protecting water resources of the Surface Creek Valley is the intent of a question on the November ballot, explains Austin Keiser, board president of the Grand Mesa Water Conservancy District.
The district board wants to be able to take on long-term debt.
The debt, says Keiser, is so there will be funds available to take advantage of opportunities to rehabilitate or acquire reservoirs on the Grand Mesa.
The basic premise of the ballot question, Keiser explained, is so that the district will have a pre-approval from voters to obtain financing when "opportunity arises." Opportunity would be a situation where a valuable reservoir, its water, or its senior easement on Forest Service land can be retained for local use. Without the voters pre-approval to obtain debt, an opportunity could be lost because of long lead times to get a question on the ballot, he explained.
The ballot question does not raise the district's property tax mill levy. What it does is allow the district to take on up to $200,000 in debt at no more than 3 percent interest for use in reservoir rehab.
The upper limit on the amount of debt is $200,000, and the limit of the debt plus interest is $270,000, according to the ballot question.
If any of the district's debt-derived cash ends up being invested, then the interest earned on it is de-Bruced, according to the ballot question.
The District collects about $50,000 per year in property tax, and Keiser said that is sufficient to pay off debt approved by the ballot question.
The district is currently doing a reservoir rehab project on Peak Reservoir and will do another at Blanch Park in a combined project that will bring the cost of the stored water to a "reasonable" level, Keiser said.
Recently, seven reservoirs on Grand Mesa were named on the state's list for potential abandonment due to lack of use from needed repairs, said Keiser.blog comments powered by Disqus