Monday, January 31, 2011

Fountain board loses part-time director

Posted By on Mon, Jan 31, 2011 at 3:50 PM

The Pueblo Chieftain reports that Gary Barber won't stay on the job at the Fountain Creek Watershed Flood Control and Greenway District, a panel comprised of officials from Pueblo and Colorado Springs.

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Barber has been interim director, a part-time gig that pays about $40,000. The district was formed in 2009 without a source of revenue, although the Lower Arkansas Valley Water Conservancy District and Springs Utilities agreed to put up $300,000 each to cover expenses in 2010 and 2011.

Barber told us recently that there's discussion about asking voters for a property tax mill levy dedicated to the agency. Such a proposal would have to be approved by El Paso and Pueblo County voters.

"When is it appropriate to go to the voters and ask them for a permanent revenue source?" he says. "2012? How do you fund the district until election day? There's uncertainty whether the state economy would have recovered by 2012."

Barber says he presented a budget plan with meager spending through 2016 when the district will get a windfall of millions from Springs Utilities under its agreement with Pueblo County for construction of the Southern Delivery System pipeline.

Meantime, the Chieftain reports, the district decided not to interview any applicants for the director job.

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