Tax increases are shortsighted solutions

Sunday, Aug. 19, 2018 11:44 AM

The city council debates yet another tax increase ballot proposal. At the same time, planners approve spending $2 million over budget for enhancement of Santa Rita Park and continued deficit-spending by Lake Nighthorse Recreation Area. To effect these changes, the Smart 160 and Animas River Trail connection to Three Springs by Home Depot has, once again, been shelved. Couple that with the termination of transit service to Three Springs, the forfeiture, by the city, of commitment to the 75-acre community park and 40-acre middle and elementary education area in Three Springs. Instead, they propose the Durango Mesa Park, complete with gondolas and a cost of $30 million in infrastructure access. Residents on the southeast Grandview entrance of Durango have gotten their message, loud and clear.

Tax increases are shortsighted, inflexible solutions to complex planning problems. Why not increase the revenue streams instead? Additional revenue streams are more robust fixers and buffers for shortfalls, maintenance, infrastructure and natural disasters. Most importantly, they do not increase the expensive cost of living in Durango.

There are approximately 1,400 residents in Three Springs, along with 1,500 daily commuters. Farmington Hill traffic will soon be rerouted through the Bridge to Nowhere on Wilson Gulch Drive. With almost 100,000 square feet of shovel-ready commercial space for sale along Wilson Gulch, it represents a potentially robust, long term tax revenue stream. Increased traffic will attract brick-and-mortar retailers and divert Farmington shoppers to Durango! Three Springs promises a robust tax revenue stream for many years.

Bill Frederick