Letter: Help for Red Cliff
After reading a recent letter to the editor from a Red Cliff resident in the Vail Daily, it seemed readers would be left with the impressions that all Red Cliff residents were staunch opponents of Minturn’s annexation of the Battle Mountain development, and that the development itself is nothing but bad.
That’s not the case.
I decided to provide a little more background than the previous letter supplied on issues such as quality of life, taxes and traffic that the author said would “wreak havoc.”
The reality, in my opinion, is quite different.
Red Cliff as an incorporated municipality struggles day in and day out to function. Basic municipal services ” snow plowing (remember last winter?), water, road maintenance and the like ” are marginal here. We don’t have cell phone service, cable television, or high speed Internet.
The Vail Daily doesn’t even deliver papers here.
Although Red Cliff was one of the few municipalities in the county to reduce its mill levy, our mill levy is one of the highest in the state because with few businesses here, property taxes make up a disproportionate share of the town’s income. If the development at Battle Mountain is approved, the reality is that our tax rate would likely decrease because the town could see a larger taxable base and more income overall, lessening property tax dependence.
Insurance rates, the author assured readers, would “skyrocket.” The facts don’t make nearly as interesting reading. The developer is working with the emergency service providers ” fire, police and ambulance ” for a station on Battle Mountain property. Right now the nearest fire, law enforcement and ambulance station is many minutes away. Having those services closer to Red Cliff will cause insurance rates to decrease.
Traffic now during the “Leadville 500” during morning and evening hours, is a problem that’s only going to get worse, Battle Mountain or no Battle Mountain. Working with the developer and the Town of Minturn can help provide traffic management that currently is non-existent.
While I respect individual opinions, it’s easier to make decisions when more complete information is available.