As the mayor and members of the Eagle Town Board of Trustees in 2005, we were disappointed to hear of the Gypsum Town Board's decision to end the revenue sharing agreement between our two towns, though many of us speculated that decision would have occurred regardless of the vote for-ERS.
The recent letter from Gypsum contains several inaccurate statements and assumptions, which we wanted to clarify.
The area east of Chambers Avenue was first proposed for development as the Red Mountain Ranch mixed use project in November of 2000. A Planned Unit Development (PUD) was submitted to the town of Eagle in January 2004, which included a Costco store as part of the proposal.
The revenue sharing agreement with Gypsum was signed in the spring of 2005 while the Red Mountain Ranch development proposal, with Costco as a tenant, was still being reviewed by the Eagle Town Board. The Red Mountain Ranch PUD was denied by a 5-2 vote in late June of 2005. It wasn't until March of 2006 that Costco and Gypsum formalized an agreement to build in the town of-Gypsum.
As originally envisioned, the revenue sharing agreement was to be a 60 percent/40 percent split on any large scale development at either the Airport Gateway or east Eagle property but due to previous restrictions of sales tax in Gypsum, the split was 84 percent/16 percent. The town of Eagle has no similar restrictions and would have provided a true 60 percent/40 percent split if Costco had been built in Eagle. As it was, the revenue sharing agreement would also have applied to Eagle River Station. -
At no time were discussions made that would limit one town or the other from approving large scale development anywhere within their respective communities. In fact to do so would so limit future boards abilities to deal with growth, traffic, infrastructure, and more as to potentially make providing municipal services impossible.-
Over the last five years Gypsum Town Board members have been asked on numerous occasions to make the revenue sharing agreement permanent by taking that issue to a vote of the people - something the Eagle Town Board was willing to do.
For Gypsum to say that Eagle, by approving ERS, has decided to no longer honor the agreement is completely false and misleading. If we were Gypsum residents, we would have to wonder why our government decided to end the agreement just at the point when Gypsum could begin to recoup some of the tax money paid to Eagle. -
While we agree there are many areas of mutual interest where the two towns can work together, this is not a very good step in that direction. Ultimately, we believe that while Gypsum will realize a short-term gain, they have lost out on a long term potential of dollars and goodwill.