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Last week the Recreation Center ballot measure (limited to town voters) was defeated by a large margin. Yes we are disappointed, but not deterred. The Recreation Center committee and the dedicated supporters that rallied with them are passionate about this topic.
All county residents that are in support of a Recreation Center please contact your new council members and county commissioners and make it known you want a chance to vote on this very important amenity in the future for our youth, families, individuals, retirees and visitors. Let them know that a Recreation Center is healthy growth and for them to take a look at the overwhelming evidence from the many communities all around us that this is a viable and doable plan. A revenue bond is the best way for everyone to pay for Recreation Center including our visitors.
Email all your elected officials and ask questions. Try to understand Clifford’s adamant opposition for something that would be affordable for his neighbors and a huge benefit to his family members who are into sports and recreational activities. Ask them all why they don’t think a 1 percent sales tax, that would benefit a large portion of their constituents, isn’t a good idea? Or if not now, when since interest rates are at historical lows — then when? Ask them if the Towns to Lakes Trail they all talk about will be done soon and how many people might use it compared to a recreation center. Ask why the river walk path can’t continue on the easement in front of the Springs Resort using the current bridge instead of raising money for yet another walking bridge? Ask them why Pagosa can’t have the same economic benefits that other towns do that have recreation centers? Ask about roads and sidewalks — shouldn’t they be paid for by property taxes and not sales tax.
My point is don’t be afraid to ask questions.
The Recreation Center proposal did not take from the Town budget and surely didn’t take from the County budget. Remember the information presented by the “Fair Taxes for Pagosa Committee” was filled with misinformation and scare tactics creating polarization. The Recreation Center budget, like all budgets for future projects, was based on projections researched by a reputable consulting company and other professional individuals involved with recreation centers around Colorado.
I think the county commissioners should send out a survey to their constituents and see what type of support there is for a Recreation Center in the county. Remember all mountain towns have many outdoor activities, but provide a balance to the elements with an indoor facility. It isn’t an either or — it is just when. Providing this amenity for families and retirees will attract more folks to move here, which in turns keeps our town vibrant and our economy growing.
Thanks for all the support in making the campaign on the yes side honest, forthright and filled with facts and reliable projections.