Government Tracker: Vail continues budget talks
Board: Vail Town Council, Tuesday afternoon’s work session.
Present: Greg Moffet, Ludwig Kurz, Margaret Rogers, Dave Chapin, Dale Bugby and Mayor Andy Daly.
Issue: The 2016 town budget, specifically, donations to various projects.
Who they talked to: Representatives of the Vail Commission on Special Events, the Colorado Ski & Snowboard Museum, Town Finance Director Kathleen Halloran and others.
What they talked about: With the first reading of the 2016 budget ordinance scheduled for Oct. 6, the council is putting some of the finishing touches on the document. Tuesday’s discussion focused on town contributions, from the ski museum to education and enrichment programs sponsored by the events board.
What they did: There was no voting, but a majority of council members agreed in principle to provide, among other things, $150,000 to the EGE Air Alliance for flight programs, $500,000 to the ski museum for exterior and interior renovations, $50,000 in matching funds to the Castle Peak senior care facility in Eagle and money to investigate re-paving a portion of Betty Ford Way through Ford Park.
What’s next? The council is set to give initial approval to the 2016 budget at its Oct. 6 meeting.
Issue: Meeting with the Eagle Valley Land Trust.
Who they talked to: Jim Daus, Land Trust executive director, and Dr. Tom Steinberg, a longtime Eagle Valley Land Trust board member.
What they talked about: Daus explained the Eagle Valley Land Trust’s job to the council. Its main function is to serve as a way to work with private and public land owners to create “conservation easements,” contracts that permanently prohibit development.
Daus talked about the various tax advantages available to property owners, and he offered to help the town in any open space preservation projects it might have.
At the moment, there aren’t really any opportunities in the town, but Daus said the Eagle Valley Land Trust is willing to help however it can.
What’s next? Looking for ways to find and preserve more open space.
Wildfires have become more numerous, bigger and more destructive in the past 40 years. That’s a big deal in a town surrounded by public land.