Vail gives first OK to ’16 budget
Board: Vail Town Council, Oct. 6 afternoon and evening meetings.
Present: Jenn Bruno, Greg Moffet, Ludwig Kurz, Margaret Rogers, Dave Chapin, Dale Bugby and Mayor Andy Daly.
• Topic: Site visit to the new Lions Ridge apartments.
Who they talked to: Developer Jen Wright.
What they did: Wright took council members and a handful of town staff members on a tour of a finished two-bedroom and one-bedroom unit at the site, the east side of the Timber Ridge apartments property. Unlike the original Timber Ridge units, which are aimed largely at seasonal employees, the Lions Ridge units are targeted toward full-time residents.
Wright showed off the units’ good-sized outdoor decks, large storage units and more. Council members were particularly impressed by the lack of interstate noise on a south-side unit when the patio door and windows were closed. The place was virtually silent.
What’s next? The first tenants will occupy units in the next several weeks.
• Topic: First reading of the 2016 budget ordinance.
Who they talked to: A number of people.
How they voted: 5-2, with Moffet and Daly voting against.
What it does: In addition to funding the usual town operations and projects, the 2016 budget also:
• Allocates more money — $75,000 — to the Eagle Air Alliance in order to secure more direct flights to the valley. The Vail Local Marketing District already puts $75,000 into the fund. More money could be allocated if Vail Resorts provides more direct funding.
• Dedicates $50,000 for an engineering study to finish paving Betty Ford Way in Ford Park.
• Puts another $150,000 into the Commission on Special Events specifically for education and enrichment programs.
• Creates a merit raise pool that could provide maximum 5 percent raises for town employees.
Daly, whose last meeting is Nov. 3, — he’s served two consecutive terms and can’t run for office this year — cautioned council members that 2016’s increase in spending outstrips expected increases in revenue, one of the reasons he voted against the budget.
With the upcoming July 12 grand opening of the new Everkrisp trail from Minturn to Eagle-Vail, Whiskey Creek trail will reopen to mountain bikes.