Water & Conservation
April 21, 2016
TO: Shanna Fortier, Douglas County News-Press
FROM: Jim Nikkel, District Manager
RE: Response to News-Press Story - "Castle Pines Council opposes increased taxes for Metro District"
Shanna, I know we spoke about the details of the District's bond issue question, but I must not have been clear about how it all works. I'm not taking issue with my quotes, but the supporting text.
As a result, there are serious misstatements of fact in your story, and it important those be corrected as our residents consider the ballot issue. Whatever the City's, and the Mayor's motive in opposing us, our residents and voters deserve accurate information.
It may be easier to give you a list of bullets that correct the erroneous elements in the story-
- Residents are not being asked to approve a repayment cost of $125M. Because of the TABOR Amendment, the maximum possible repaymentof $125M is required verbiage. The actual debt repayment will be significantly lower because the District will issue debt over years (not all in 2018) and fund projects in phases under the Renewable Water Plan as they are constructed and at lower interest rates.
- We've set the bond question at $64 million because we significantly scaled back an initial plan that was estimated to cost $106 million. We expect to complete water acquisition and infrastructure for $64 million over a period of years.
- The 15 mills replaces the 22 mills currently being used to retire our legacy debt. Property owners may actually see a reduction on their tax bill.
- Taxes would not increase the stated "$2.6 million" in the first year. Again, the $2.6M figure comes from required language of TABOR ballot measures. It's an authorization to start issuing debt no earlier than 2018 and again, if the District does issue any debt in 2018, it won't be $64M, but phased in through the life of the project.
- We took significant steps to advise our public of the findings and adoption of the Water Plan, it's never been kept secret, and a summary is on our website. We had good attendance at the meetings, especially from HOA representatives, and they were supportive, and many promised to help spread the facts about the Water Plan. The Plan has been under discussion for months at our regular, open board meetings.
- The District's website has been redesigned and updated over the past few months, but we've had an active consumer-facing website for at least six years. We know a community group is interested in seeing this measure passed, and I will be sharing these facts with them as well.
But I am specifically asking the News-Press to post this response on its website and the Colorado Community Media websites, and that the corrections appear in next week's editions, ahead of the ballot return deadline. Please do not hesitate to call me immediately if you have any additional questions.
7404 Yorkshire Drive Castle Pines, CO 80108 Phone: 303.688.8550 I www. CPNMD.org
REBUTTAL TO CITY COUNCIL RESOLUTION NO. 16-14
This resolution was not on City Council’s published agenda prior to its April 12th Council meeting, nor was it available to the public prior to adoption. The Board of Directors of Castle Pines North Metropolitan District prepared this response to correct false and inaccurate statements disseminated by the Mayor and Council members concerning District activities. The Board finds it troubling that the Mayor and Council members continue to attack the District for setting policies and managing the affairs of the District in accordance with state local government and special district law.
RESOLUTION NO. 16-14
A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE
CITY OF CASTLE PINES, COLORADO OPPOSING BALLOT ISSUE A TO
INCREASE PROPERTY TAXES AND DEBT OF THE CASTLE PINES NORTH
WHEREAS,the City of Castle Pines, Colorado (the "City") is a legislative body and authorized to adopt resolutions in support or opposition to local, state and federal legislation; and
WHEREAS,the Castle Pines City Council opposes Issue A, a property tax increase and debt increase proposed by the Castle Pines North Metropolitan District ("District"), for the following reasons:
- INCREASED PROPERTYTAXES.
The people of Castle Pines have been burdened by high property tax rates since the bankruptcy of the Castle Pines North Metropolitan District in 1990. If passed, Issue A would increase property taxes levied by the District for at least 30 years.
Read more... MAY 2016 ELECTION QUESTION EXPLAINED
Castle Pines North Metropolitan District is dedicated to providing safe, reliable water to all residents and businesses throughout the community.
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xERISCAPING IN CASTLE PINES NORTH
A good landscape and garden begins with a good design. To learn more about how xeriscaping can enhance your home, read The 7 Principles of Xeriscape.
Although the Front Range presents a special set of challenges for growing trees, the desire to have a large shade tree in your yard can be a reality. Learn more about caring for your trees in Castle Pines North.
Want to know the proper way to plant trees and shrubs? Our Tree and Shrub Planting Guidelines can get your plants off to the right start.
Click the graphic below for CPNMD's full color guide to Xeriscape Plants: