City Service to Continue Despite Ballot Failures
by Lisa Crockett
Despite a failed ballot measure aimed at providing the mechanism for transferring funding from the Castle Pines North (CPN) Metro District to the City of Castle Pines North, the city is adequately funded and will be able to provide necessary services to its citizens, according to CPN Mayor Maureen Shul.
“Although these ballot measures [designated as “2D” and “2E” on the ballot] would not have increased the tax bill for CPN citizens as some incorrectly assumed, they were rejected along with the library initiative and school bond issues, which in this highly volatile economic climate was to be expected,” said Shul.
The measures proposed a transfer of revenue from a mill levy currently paid by CPN residents to the CPN Metro District.
“I do not believe that the failure of 2D and 2E will have a significant impact on the City,” said CPN City Council member Chip Coppola. “We had been preparing a budget that did not recognize that revenue. Certainly, if the measures had passed, and if the Metro District had also voted to transfer the mills, the City would have had more revenue. That revenue would have been used to provide for better staffing and response time to city issues, as well as better response and management of public works and infrastructure needs. Nevertheless, I do not believe that the public will see any material changes in how the city operates.”
In February, the City will be one year old, and at that time it will assume road maintenance and other municipal functions that have been handled by Douglas County. Though the feasibility study conducted during the incorporation process made the assumption that revenue from these measures would be part of the city’s funding, Shul said that the city will simply further streamline operations.
“Streets will be plowed and maintained; other city operations will continue as normal,” said Shul. “No one should notice any change in services. The City will continue all efforts to collaborate with the Metro District for the purpose of providing efficiency of services and cost savings to all our citizens.”
Post-election, Shul said the city council will soon begin meeting with CPN HOAs to discuss how services like trash service and common-area maintenance, now being provided to each individual HOA, can be combined and thus reduce costs.
The Metro District, too, is looking for ways to collaborate with the City.
“We are actively working with the City to identify opportunities to save money,” said CPN Metro District Board President Bill Santos. “Current initiatives under consideration include sharing office space, sharing administrative and financial support, and sharing infrastructure like phones, faxes, printers, and copiers. We’re also looking for ways to align City and District involvement in longer-term projects that would be beneficial, including our water plan and the City’s growth plans.”