Vail Daily letter: Eagle-Vail cannot afford 5A
The board of the Eagle-Vail Metropolitan District is proposing increasing property taxes in order to pay for a new “community clubhouse.” Their advertising claims a mill levy increase of only 5.6 mills. However, the claim does not stand up to the scrutiny of the actual facts.
The ballot asks to allow the Metro District to increase taxes up to $1,095,000 per year by “mill levy imposed annually without limitation as to rate.” This would require an increase of the mill levy up by 16.2 mills or $162 per year per $100,000 in assessed value. A 78 percent increase in Eagle-Vail property taxes. This would be $810 per year for a $500,000 home or $24,300 over the life 30 year of the bond. This is on top of a 21 percent increase in property taxes expected in 2016.
This is an immense additional debt obligation to be undertaken by the only 1,443 Eagle Vail landowners. This is a 345 percent increase in debt obligation to a total of $33,025,506 or about $23,000 for each homeowner. The magnitude of debt represents one-third the total value of all property in Eagle Vail. This will increase the cost of living; lower the resale value of properties and increase of rents to all residents. This will also impair the district’s ability to borrow for necessary projects in the future.
The proposal adds no new facilities to Eagle-Vail. We already have a clubhouse in a spectacular location. We already have community meeting areas and district offices at the pavilion. Any new 14,000-square-foot clubhouse will sit vacant most of the year. Any year-round restaurant or other operations will have to be subsidized by additional taxes on the homeowners and for which no budget has been presented. The Metro Board has promised a long list of amenities that the project “may” have in a transparent attempt to attract “yes” votes. However, there is no budget for all items and after the election the board is not required to provide any amenity.
Finally we would lose two tennis courts, perhaps all courts, and a large part of Pavilion Park. The Metro Board suggests it will start selling off portions of its property for development to help pay for the project. Once land is sold, it is lost to the public forever. Stop the insanity. Vote ‘no’ on 5A.
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