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Dear Editor:

I was given a document a couple of weeks ago, titled “November 2012 Update and Briefing Document.” This document was about the formation of a metro district in Meadows IV located within PLPOA boundaries. The document points out that the county will unlikely be able to make progress solving the road problems that exists as it relates to care and maintenance of roads. The document stated that formation of a metro district would be a logical solution to this problem. It goes on to state that the authors have met with the county administrator and the county attorney, and were encouraged to proceed with the project.

Here are the issues I have with this proposal: 1) The document was signed by a person who doesn’t even reside in the affected area; 2) they have not contacted the residents of the area to see if the majority would support the idea; 3) some of the major roads in this area cross boundaries into other areas, making this area basically landlocked; and 4) based on the dollar increase that has been suggested, it would amount to a 20 to 25 percent increase in property taxes for these residents. Is this an unethical way around TABOR, which prohibits property tax revenue growth from exceeding 5.5 percent each year, adjusted for new construction? We have elderly people in the area who are on fixed incomes and this would be a real hardship on them.

Of course, the county would like them to proceed, thus keeping the taxes and being relieved of maintaining some major county roads (i.e. Meadows and South Pagosa Blvd.). If the county commissioners feel metro districts are such a great idea, why don’t they lead by example? I would like to see them establish Metro Districts where they live before trying to push it on to the rest of us. Better yet, do your jobs and find a way to get it done.

Talk to some of the oldtimers who seemed to have a handle on maintaining the roads (i.e. Chris Chavez) if you don’t have a clue. The county residents are suffering enough without finding ways to raise their taxes, while at the same time taking away many of the safety nets that are/were there for the needy. If you want to find more revenue for the county, be smart, think jobs. More jobs means more taxes paid thus more revenue.

All I see thus far is the county and the town keeping jobs away, not attracting them. There is a lot of investment money in this community, however, people who have it are keeping a low profile, not wanting to invest in a community that is so dysfunctional and anti-growth oriented. The key is a business friendly environment providing good jobs and smart growth. Don’t let your egos or lack of vision get in the way.

Mike Hayward

This story was posted on November 29, 2012.