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November 29, 2012
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Vail Daily Editor and Publisher Don Rogers: Avon on an upswing

Things are looking up for Avon.

After a flat first half of the year, its sales tax revenue has popped up quite nicely. September's revenue came in at a relatively whopping 8.5 percent higher than last September, and its year-to-date sales tax revenue has grown 3.4 percent compared to 2011 at this time.

That rivals Vail, which is experiencing a record year. Avon is not at that point, but its revenues are growing again in line with their sister towns. As a sort of general measuring stick, Eagle County's sales tax revenue so far has grown by a little over 5 percent over last year so far. (Come on, snow!)

This is good news for Avon, and all the sweeter for Mayor Rich Carroll, who took my column to task last Friday for referencing old numbers from a summer story comparing municipal sales tax figures and rather snidely suggesting that Avon might enjoy genuine growth after making the only decision left to them to stop litigation with the big developer in town.

And hey, while I don't like being wrong (ask our occasionally suffering staff), this is an, ahem, genuinely happy correction to make.

Further, with Avon stopping the bleeding from paying lawyers and such in its court battle royale with the developers of the Village at Avon, there's reason for hope outside the neighborhood the Town Council could never please anyway.

Yes, I know that's provocative, and yes, I still believe it to be completely true. Besides, there was no going back to a clean slate and doing all the development review "properly." The council sold that farm in 1998 with the original development approval. This was a case of either taking a bad deal or something even worse if the council didn't go with the new plan, just in time.

Now, the council frustrated everyone paying attention to no end before doing the right thing, making pretty much the only sane decision they could make. I'm reconsidering an assessment of flat dysfunctional to something more similar to the Denver Broncos with Tim Tebow at quarterback. Talk about excitement.

Remember how it would seem like he couldn't complete a pass until the last two minutes of the game. Then, boom. Somehow the Broncos won again. Where did that lightning come from?

I understand the neighbors are displeased, to say the least, and considering their legal options.

But their council played a bad hand as well as it could, and their town generally is in much better shape than it was before.

Here's a tip of the cap to that.

Editor and Publisher Don Rogers can be reached at drogers@vaildaily.com or 970-748-2920.


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The VailDaily Updated Nov 29, 2012 11:36PM Published Nov 29, 2012 11:32PM Copyright 2012 The VailDaily. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.