IQ: Who runs this town? 

It's the classic Colorado Springs debate: Do the developers wag the government's tail? Should builders, who have prospered mightily in the past decade, be charged impact fees to offset the negative effects of growth like pollution, strained infrastructure and traffic congestion? Feelings are mixed.

click to enlarge Jason Hendrickson
  • Jason Hendrickson

Jason Hendrickson
Coffee shop employee
Neighborhood: Downtown

Do developers run this town? Pretty much, yeah. Just look at all the development to the north and east of town. And look what they're trying to do in Red Rock Canyon, getting Manitou to annex it and declare it a slum.

Would you support a citywide tax to offset the cost of growth? Definitely. Ever since the Taxpayers Bill of Rights, the city lacks the money to maintain the infrastructure at a pace equal to growth. Developers should pay a lot bigger share than they have. They're the ones making money from growth.

click to enlarge Robert Knapp
  • Robert Knapp

Robert Knapp
Neighborhood: Old North End

Do the developers run this town? Not necessarily. They influence it, certainly, but I think the people who live here run this town.

Would you support a citywide tax to offset the cost of growth? I wouldn't support any kind of tax that would inhibit growth. I like growth. I need growth for my business.

Would you prefer that developers be charged increased impact fees? No, I'm pro-development. I think the taxpayers should pay for that.

click to enlarge Becky Girtman
  • Becky Girtman

Becky Girtman
Interior designer
Neighborhood: Rockrimmon

Do developers run this town? I don't think they run it, but they certainly influence where and how money is spent in this town. Developer money drives a lot of the decisions that are made. And they certainly influence how this town grows.

Should developers or taxpayers pay for negative growth impacts? If it's something that's going to benefit only the developer, the developer should pay for that. If it's something that benefits the community, like hospitals and schools, the taxpayers and developers should share the cost.


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