stormwater

Town and County seek feedback on proposed stormwater management project

The following is a Press Release from the Town of Estes Park:

Proposed Stormwater Utility fees mailed to Estes Valley property owners. The Town of Estes Park and Larimer County mailed letters March 7 to property owners within the Estes Valley Development Code area with proposed property-specific stormwater fees for a proposed Stormwater Utility. Impervious area measurements from aerial imagery were used to create four tiers of proposed monthly residential stormwater fees and separate individual monthly fees for improved non-residential parcels. The fee amounts are proposed to adjust annually based on the CDOT Construction Cost Index and forecasts of future grant and/or voter-approved sales tax revenue.

Property owner feedback is requested through the online questionnaire available at www.estes.org/stormwater through March 29, 2019. One response from each property is requested. This critical feedback will assist elected officials in making a decision on the possible formation of a stormwater utility to manage flood risks in the Estes Valley. Town Public Works Director Greg Muhonen commented, “After our extensive public outreach in 2018, we learned that property owners wanted specific information on the proposed stormwater fees for their properties before supporting or opposing new stormwater fees to reduce community flood risk.” Muhonen further explained, “The Town and County have since hired a consultant to digitally measure impervious area on all improved properties. These measurements are used to more precisely calculate proposed stormwater fees for this proposed utility.”

This proposed Stormwater Management Project follows the introduction of the new preliminary floodplain maps provided by the Colorado Hazard Mapping Program (CHAMP). Projects will help reduce future flood damages and reduce the number of properties located within the floodplain boundaries, possibly reducing insurance costs. The proposed flood mitigation projects would be paid for with the proposed fees and other potential funding sources such as sales tax and grant funding.

Town of Estes Park Public Works staff will offer one-on-one consultations during which property owners can meet with staff to address questions and concerns. These office hours are scheduled for March 13, 12:30 - 2:30 p.m.; March 14, 4 - 6 p.m.; March 15, 10 a.m. - 12 p.m.; March 18, 1 - 3 p.m.; March 21, 4 - 6 p.m.; March 22, 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.; March 25, 4 - 6 p.m.; and March 27, 1 - 3 p.m. These meetings will be held in Room 100 of Town Hall, 170 MacGregor Ave. Appointments are encouraged in order to reduce wait times, and walk-ins are welcomed. To schedule a specific meeting time, request a printed questionnaire, or for more information, please contact Christy Crosser at ccrosser@estes.org or 970-577-3574.

The Stormwater Master Plan, Feasibility Study and other supporting documents can be found at www.estes.org/stormwater. A copy of the Stormwater Master Plan is also located in Room 100 of Town Hall and at the Estes Valley Library.

Town of Estes Park Seeks Public Feedback on Proposed Stormwater Utility Fees

From the Town of Estes Park:

New fees would be assessed on all Estes Valley property owners to pay for flood mitigation projects

The Town of Estes Park encourages Estes Valley property owners to learn about a proposed Stormwater Management Program and provide feedback by July 17. The Town recently completed a Stormwater Master Plan that recommends $79 million in proposed projects to reduce flood risk and a possible fee-based utility to fund and implement the projects. The utility would exist within the Estes Valley Development Code boundary, including unincorporated portions of the Estes Valley.

Meetings in June included an overview presentation and breakout sessions to review conceptual maps and projects with property owners. Property owners are encouraged to review the updated information, including a video presentation, and provide feedback through the online survey by July 17 at www.estes.org/stormwater. Printed surveys are available at the Public Works Department in Room 100 of Town Hall, 170 MacGregor Ave. Town staff will also be available at the Estes Valley Farmer’s Market in Bond Park June 14 and 21 to provide information and gather feedback.

Public Works Director Greg Muhonen explained the importance of flood mitigation, “For every $1 spent on mitigation and resiliency projects, $4 to $8 can be saved on future flood response and recovery. By taking proactive steps we can reduce these repetitive risks to our community.”

New fees are proposed for all owners of developed property within the Estes Valley Development Code boundary. The current cost model for the Estes Valley predicts monthly fees starting around $7 and averaging around $26 for all property types. The median proposed fee is about $14, and 90% of the proposed monthly fees are under $46. Residents of most other Larimer County and Front Range communities already pay monthly stormwater fees ranging from about $4 to $13 per month. Commercial property owners in these communities pay up to $160 per month. The basis for stormwater fees and charges is typically the amount of impervious area within a developed parcel.

The projects are proposed to be built over a 30-year period or as funding and approvals allow. In addition to reducing flood risk for residents and businesses, the projects would ultimately help remove properties from the new, draft floodplain boundaries presented recently by the Colorado Water Conservation Board.

For more information please visit www.estes.org/stormwater or contact Town Engineering Manager David Hook at dhook@estes.org or 970-577-3586.