Time to Ask the Right Questions – Avon!

by  Clayton Moore

The difference between Good Governance vs. Bad Governance can be exposed by looking at the questions – your elected officials are willing to ask – and answer.

The proposed total purchase price (including projected remodel costs and Interest payments) for the “Building for Bureaucrats” also known as the (Skier Building) is $12,500,000.00 – per Avon’s Ordinance “14-17”.  (Click Here)

The $12.5 Million Dollar Taxpayer money is supposed to come from (25 years) of Avon’s 2% (RETT – Real Estate Transfer Tax) that is legally attached to all Property in Avon.  Avon folks pay (2%) of their Property’s value (to buy into Avon) and another (2%) paid at the time they sell and leave Avon.  Don’t forget the (6%) Real Estate Commission you’re likely to pay when selling your Avon Property.  Obviously, if your Avon property appreciates say (10%) over the (4-5 years?) you own it – you just break even on your Avon Property “Investment”.

The KEY question for Avon Voters and Property Owners is this!

What is the real “investment value” – to you Avon Resident/Property Owner/Voter, if your Town spends $12,500,000.00 of your Tax Money on a Building for Avon’s Bureaucrats?

Is this proposed multi-million dollar Avon Building expenditure likely to…

1 –  Increase Commerce for say…(Roger Benedict’s Carpet business in Avon, Jim Pavelich’s North Side Café Restaurant…provoke more shopping at Avon’s Wal~Mart and Home Depot?  (this list is endless)

2 –  Cause an increase in Lodging Reservations at Avon’s Christy Lodge, Avon Center, The Westin, the new Wyndham?

3 – Help Avon PD – improve Public Safety in the Town?

4 – Help improve the Schools in Avon – for our children’s Education?

5 – Increase overall Avon Property Values – both Residential and Commercial?

The answer to these questions is OBVIOUS for any objective and rational person.

Why isn’t Avon’ City Council – even willing to discuss this proposed purchase in the context of an “Investment for Avon Taxpayers”?

Answer:  Because they can’t.  This proposed expenditure does nothing to help improve Avon’s “Quality of Life” (at large) in any way.

Join us and the rest of the rational and reasonable voters in Avon – and VOTE “NO” on Avon’s Ballot this month.

Is Vail Honeywagon – Playing Fair – with their Customers?

ECT Reports – You Decide

Dateline:  January 2015 – Eagle County, Colorado

Local Eagle County company:  Vail Honeywagon – Locally owned by the Donovan Family for many years.

ECT like most of our readers – ECT prefers to support local businesses where and when we can.  Hence, the ECT folks are Vail Honeywagon customers and have been for (many+1) years…

The question today the ECT asks – is Vail Honeywagon playing fair?

Case in Point –  this quarters residential Trash Bill -

Vail-HoneyWagon

While many of us have noticed and enjoyed the lower Fuel costs we’re paying at the Gas Pump over the last several weeks…apparently the news of Reduced Fuel costs – has not reached Vail Honeywagon.

Proof?  OK – look at the Vail Honeywagon Bill Totals for last year….

Vail-Honeywagon-1

Do you notice any reduction (even a small one) in the price the ECT (and you?) pay?

The ECT folks called Vail Honeywagon last week to learn what (if any) plans Vail Honeywagon to reduce the “Fuel Surcharge” they added to all our bills when Fuel costs started their climb up to $4.00+ a gallon…

Honeywagon’s Answer?  – a mish-mash of uncertainty and non-answer,  then a phone transfer to (current owner) Matt Donovan’s voicemail.

GRANTED:  We’re not talking about a lot of money (per residential trash hauling bill).

ECT’s POINT:  Our concerns centered on Fair Play to the Customer.  If Honeywagon needs to cover their increased Fuel/Transportation costs (when Fuel went to $4.00/gallon) then why don’t we see a a Fuel Charge (reduction) reflected in their most recent Bill when Fuel costs have been dropping significantly for weeks?

ECT is happy to print a public response from Vail Honeywagon – anytime.  Just let the ECT folks know.

In the meantime – does anyone know what Honeywagon competitor – Waste Management (Fuel Surcharge) is?

Waste-Management

Avon’s – Tax Abuse Against Homeowners

by  Clayton Moore

Your Avon property may not be worth $21,950,000.00 – however at Avon’s 2% RETT – your property is still being (Tax) Abused in Avon today!

Avon’s Voters – have their January 2015 Ballot – that asks them to allow $12,500,000.00 of (RETT- Real Estate Transfer Tax) to be spent on a “Building for Avon Bureaucrats” also known by some as the so called “Skier Building”.

That $12.5 Million figure includes the Purchase Price, Interest expense and the Projected costs of the Building Remodel.

Why would a person be motivated to buy a home in Avon’s affluent “Mountain Star” neighborhood?

Certainly not because of Avon’s 2%  – Real Estate Transfer Tax.

(below is a current listing in Avon – January 2015)

Escape-From-Avon-21

2% to Buy in Avon + 2% to Sell/leave Avon = 4% of your property’s value.

4% here = $878,000.00  which turns out to be = 7% of the $12.5 Million that Avon Bureaucrats want to spend.

Is Avon Town Manager (Virginia Egger) and the rest of Avon’s City Council – prepared to put the Name of the new Mountain Star purchaser on a Brass Plaque – on the side of her new office building?

Avon’s current 2% RETT is NOT competitive – when compared to other Neighborhoods surrounding Avon.

The best chance Avon’s citizens have of making the Town’s RETT more competitive – is to Vote “NO” on your January Ballot.

EC-Transfer-Taxes-Fees

 

Vail – Back in Blue Sky Basin 2015

by Jimmy Olsen

Vail’s Blue Sky Basin?

ECT knew this “snow stake” was back there somewhere…we just had to find it!  The official web page link to this “snow stake – webcam” in Blue Sky Basin is (Click Here)

IMG_0564

The ECT photo shows that on New Year’s Day – 2015 – at 9:39AM that morning – ECT folks figured out – just where this snow depth apparatus is located.  It’s actually about 4 feet above the snow level in Blue Sky – which puts it about 7+ feet above the ground level, buried under the snow.  It comes complete with electric power and an Internet connection for the Webcam that provides the current image for interested skiers!

Why Avon’s Government – Can’t be Trusted

by  Clayton Moore

Why Vote “NO” on Avon’s January 2015 Ballot?

Answer:  Because you can’t trust Avon’s City Council to represent YOUR interests.

FACT:  Avon’s January 2015 (Special Election) is being held because of a “grass roots” Referendum/Petition organized by a few patriotic Avon (property owners/taxpayers).

FACT:  Your untrustworthy Avon City Council tried to “side step” your TABOR Rights and “ram this multi-million dollar purchase” through by using a legal process called “certificates of participation”, where the citizen responsible to pay the debt – don’t get to vote.  The Avon Citizens Referendum – returned that Right to Vote – back to the Avon Voters!  Thank you Avon Petition Circulators and Petition Signers.

FACT:  There is NOTHING in the specific Avon Ballot Language – that limits the Avon Government SPENDING!

Avon-Ballot-Language-5JAN2015

FACT:  The Avon Music Pavilion/Stage has an existing $2 Million Dollar – COST OVERRUN!  This Ballot Language allows Avon’s Government UNLIMITED SPENDING – simply by issuing more “Certificates of Participation” to cover any additional costs!  Do you Trust your Avon Government?

This Ballot Language offers NO PROTECTION for the Avon Taxpayer!

Now Consider Avon’s Ordinance – 14-17 (Click Here)

FACT:  The total DEBT levied against your Avon Property (via RETT) is $12,500,000.00 just for the Skier Building – over the next 25 years!  What about the already existing $2 Million Dollar cost OVERRUN on the Avon Music Stage/Pavilion – that is also secured by RETT against your Avon Property?

Why can’t you Trust the Avon’s Government?

Answer:  Because the (Mayor’s, City Council and Town Managers) so called “fact sheet” (Click Here) does not (document, specifically) this $12,500,000.00 DEBT figure the Avon Taxpayers are responsible for!

FACT:  Where does this Avon Taxpayer Money come from?  It comes from Avon’s (2% RETT – Real Estate Transfer Tax) – that is MUCH HIGHER than any other area near Avon – (except Beaver Creek’s RETT) (Click Here)  To See how much higher your Avon RETT compares to other Eagle County Towns and neighborhoods.

Happy New Year! – From your Eagle County School District

by  Clayton Moore

How does our Eagle County School District (your elected School Board and Staff) wish everyone a Happy New Year 2015?

OK – the ECT will show you!

Happy 2015 Mill Levy increase!  To be applied against your Eagle County Property’s Assessed Value to determine your 2015 Property Taxes – owed to our Public School District.  (Click Here) or on the graphic below – for the ECSD Board – Meeting Minutes, Page 3 (below) is what you’ll be interested in…

ECSD-Mill-Levy-Increase

FACT:  Our ECSD “Staff” added this request/recommendation to our School Board as a “Consent Agenda” item – which are items in a School Board meeting – that traditionally required “no discussion” and are routinely passed/voted on by “voice vote” of the elected School Board members present.

Above from the December 15th 2014 – scheduled School Board meeting.

ECT Questions:

1.)  Why hasn’t the Fishwrap – reported this?  (oh yeah, they’re the Fishwrap – what do you expect?)

2.)  EC School District – Superintendent – Dr. Jason Glass – somehow (forgot?) to mention this Mill Levy increase his weekly Column in the Fishwrap.  Imagine that.  perhaps early Alzheimer’s Dr. Glass?

3.)  Our current ECSD Board President (Ms. Jeanne McQueeney) has “Publically Stated” (Click Here) that she will Resign her elected Position on our School Board (before) being sworn in (this January 2015) as your next Eagle County Commissioner.

Ms. McQueeney the ECT will be happy to publish online, your (soon to be penned?) ECSD resignation letter.

Please let the ECT know what that letter is available.

 

 

Vail’s Sun Dog – Part II – Early AM – December 27th 2014

by  Jimmy Olsen Photography

Location:  Top of Vail Mountain – at Ski Patrol HQ’s- 11,250ft….~8:50AM

It’s called a “Sun Dog” – And it Really Looked like this!

There were no tricky camera optics involved – Vail’s tough skiers that braved the sub-zero temps on Vail Mountain that morning were treated to an unusual Morning Optical effect called a Sun Dog by the National Weather Service (Click Here).

IMG_0551

This this the 2nd time this year that the ECT folks caught a Sun Dog in the Sky (Click Here)

The Sun Dog persisted for about 1/2 hour that Saturday Morning as the ice crystals in the atmosphere gave us this unusual morning optical effect.  The Sun Dog as seen over Vail’s China Bowl about 9:15AM that morning.  It really, really looked just like that.  There were several eye-witnesses on Vail Mountain that morning – that can attest to that fact!

Sun-Dog-over-Vail-China-Bowl-27DEC2014-1

 

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