Eagle County – Divided

by  Clayton Moore

Eagle County – Divided?  Well the Hatfields and the McCoys had nothing on each other – when compared with Eagle County, Colorado today.

Eagle-County-Logo-LeftThe evidence of this (competing Tax Feuds?) will be delivered to you via U.S. Mail this week, when your Ballot arrives.  It’s due back by Tuesday, November 8th 2016 – National Election day.

This week the ECT will share some of the TAX FACTS about this election – that neither the Hatfields nor McCoys seems to want to expose.

Ballot Issue (1A) – wants you to vote yourself a tax increase in order to support – “More Affordable Workforce Housing.”  Part of the money raised targeted to “buy land” to put Affordable Workforce Housing on.

KEEP IN MIND:  You’re already paying Eagle County Taxes – to take developable land OFF THE MARKET.  It’s called the Eagle County Open Space Tax – and your paying that today!  And tomorrow, too!

CONGRATULATIONS EAGLE COUNTY! – your own County Government hasEagle-County-Logo-Right-Side grown so BIG – they they want you to pay to take developable land OFF THE MARKET – at the same time – you’ll be paying new Taxes to BUY LAND on the Market – to be developed!  It’s True, and the ECT insists this is NUTS.

Next up: Ballot Issue (3A & 3B) – our Public School District’s proposed Tax increase – is the largest proposed Tax Increase in the history of Eagle County.  The projected repayment cost of 3B alone (it’s in the Ballot language) is $233 Million – that will be attached to your Residential and Commercial Property…until the next time our School District – insists they have to have more of your families and business hard earned income.

ECT Question:  How does raising your Property Taxes – make anything more affordable?  Don’ worry Renters!  Your current Landlord will have something to say about your next years, Rent – if this new Tax passes…

Ballot Issue (1B) – Wants to Tax you an additional $32.7 Million for the purpose of expanding the “Eagle Valley Bike Trail”.  ECT hopes our readers already own a Mountain or Street Bike – because if all these other Ballot Issues pass – it’s unlikely you’ll be able to afford even a “used bike” in the months and years to come.

TAX FACT:  Even if all these proposed New Taxes (were defeated) your Taxes are already GUARANTEED TO GO UP!

How So?  Because the Eagle County Voters – approved a Tax Increase for the Ambulance District as well as the Eagle River Fire District – LAST MAY 2016.  That increase won’t be incurred (read: felt) until your new Property Tax Bill arrives in January 2017!!!

TAX FACT:  Recall how Beaver Creek Resort reacted when May 2016 County Voters voted to increase their cost to run a Ski Resort – Beaver Creek quickly decided to charge ($10.00/day) for Skier Parking – that was formerly, FREE.

ASK YOURSELF:  What the cost of YOUR Snowboarding or Skiing might be raised to should all these proposed new Taxes, pass.  It’s a safe bet that Vail Resorts – will pass on their increased costs (due to Higher Taxes) next year.

ECT will not tell voters “how to vote”.  Only consider points made here – “Cause and Effect” is an economic reality.  One wonders if our School District is teaching our kids about the economic realities of “Cause and Effect”.

All Eagle County, Colorado – School District Salaries posted Online

by     Information from our Eagle County Public School District

First things First.  Thank you Eagle County School District for responding to an “open records request” for this information.  All of our Public School District Employees are paid by the Eagle County Property Taxpayers – making each one of them, YOUR EMPLOYEE.

It is therefore REASONABLE to make this Public Record information available – to the Eagle County voters – when they are being asked to pay more Taxes – to support our Public School District.  ECT will NOT tell Voters how to vote on this Issue.

(Click Here) to download the entire Public School Payrollorganized from the Top Down (890 Employees).  The ECT does not have any specific financial information to share about our School Districts – Benefits (Healthcare, Dental) nor District Pensions at this time.

Per below – 80% of the entire School District Annual Budget is (consumed by) their Salaries, Benefits and EXISTING Debt Service.  Ballot Issue 3B – proposes to increase that Debt Service by an estimated $233 Million more…that will be attached to your Residential and Commercial Property.

This ECSD pie chart from Ms. Sandra Mutchler – CFO Eagle County Public School District.  A very nice lady by the way.


(Click On the Table Below)


School District’s Superintendent Salary & Benefits

Credit – for this documented information – given to Superintendent Dr. Jason Glass and School District/CFO  – Ms. Sandra Mutchler

Dr. Glass:   “Typically, we figure benefit costs at 33% on top of Salary when budgeting for total compensation costs. Schools are required to offer health and retirement plans — it’s not an optional expense we can cut”.

Our School District reported that our Superintendent – Dr. Jason Glass receives an annual salary of $195,500.00.  Add to that $64,515.00 (33% in Benefits) and an additional/presumed (unknown) amount as a (performance bonus?) for achieving and improving certain test scores of our Students in the District.

Minimum total annual salary:  $260,015.00   ECT suggests that the Dr. Jason Glass family can reasonably afford all these proposed new tax increases.  Can your family?

Below is from a recent/published “straight talk” from Dr. Glass.

ECT finds Dr. Glass number of 33% noticeably higher (more than double) than the number the District’s CFO ( Ms. Sandra Mutchler) passed on to the ECT at 16% in her Pie Chart. (Click Here)


Outside of our School District (that teaches roughly 9 months of the year) – does anyone know any other Eagle County business (today) that offers their employees a Benefits package of 33% of their Annual Salary?

Just asking.

More Curious Election FACTS:   In November 2006 Eagle County Voters rejected a ballot issue (1A) that would have caused County Taxpayers to pay more in Taxes on what is collectively known today as “Early Childhood Development”.  (Click Here)  Their Ballot Issue/plan was to collect then spend new Taxes on/for children not old enough to attend Public School in Kindergarten.  Recall that Colorado State Statute provides for a “free” and legal Public School Education for children once old enough to attend K-12.  Their (1A) Ballot issue (it didn’t pass) would have LEGALLY allowed your Tax money to be spent on children before they were old enough to attend Public School Kindergarten.

Now 10 Years Later (2016):  Our Eagle County School District is paying Ms. Shelley Smith a reported annually Salary of $84,541.29 for her services as our Administrator of “Early Childhood Education”.

ECT certain Ms. Smith is a very nice lady and works very hard.

ECT just can’t figure out why our School District is paying for Services – earlier rejected by the Voters in 2006.  Can you?  Ms. Smith’s hire date reported to be 7/6/2009.






Take an afternoon Break – at Beaver Lake

by   Jimmy Olsen Photography

Reasonable Hiking still possible this time of year.  A quick Hike up to Beaver Lake above Beaver Creek – an especially good idea.   As a reward after Hiking a few miles, back down into Beaver Creek – a Broncos game on the (HD tele) at the Beaver Creek Chop House with a friendly Bartender – offering a warm October’s afternoon – drink specials.  Amen.  A relaxing off season – and still confortable – Sunday afternoon Hike.



Dirty Little Secret – in Ballot Issue (1A)

by  Clayton Moore

If you’re still wondering how a Ballot Issue (1A) is going to promote more “Affordable Housing” here in Eagle County (by Raising Taxes even higher)…the ECT this week – will ask you to consider ANOTHER FACT about Ballot Issue – (1A).  Per the highlighted Ballot Language below…some of this proposed new Tax Money – can be used to “Acquire Land for Future Housing Units”.


Ballot-Issue-1A-ExposedDoesn’t Eagle County (already) have a Tax – an “Open Space” Tax – uniquely designed to take Millions of your Tax Money – for the sole purpose of removing Developable Land off the Market – to be permanently used as Eagle County “Open Space”?

Fact is:  Eagle County Employee (Toby Sprunk) is Eagle County’s “Open Space” Director at over $100K/year!  (Click Here).  Toby isn’t going anywhere as far as the ECT knows – and neither is Toby’s “Open Space Tax” you’re already paying!  Regardless if (1A) passes or not – you’re going to keep paying Taxes for more Eagle County “Open Space”.

Does this (1A) Ballot Issue make any sense to you – Eagle County Taxpayer?  Pay an existing Tax for more “Open Space” at the same time – you’re being asked to pay a NEW TAX designed to buy land – to put Affordable Housing on it?  Honestly, who thinks is is a good idea?  Rod Serling?  Seriously, the ECT is only asking Eagle County voters to THINK ABOUT what you are being asked to pay for.

ECT’s Advice:  Don’t be a “Dummy”.  Understand what you’re being asked to Vote and then Pay for.  Read the Ballot Language.


How one Local Business – is planning for their future

by  Clayton Moore

All businesses (small and large) have the same objective.  Profitability.

Take for example this week – local business Vail Honeywagon vs. Vail Resorts.  What is Honeywagon doing as compared to Vail Resorts – to assure their future Profitability – when faced with all these proposed New Taxes on your Ballot?

Here is your answer:  The ECT learned this week that Honeywagon has decided to increase the cost of their Residential Trash Service by over 14% from ($94.50 to $108.00)

(Side Note)  Did you get at 14% pay raise at work this past year?

ECT also learned this week…that former Vail Honeywagon competitors (MRI and Mountain Waste and Recycling) are now all the same company – Vail Honeywagon.  (Click Here)  Now scroll down to learn what Vail Resorts has done to protect their Profitability.


For their part – Vail Resorts learned what the rest of us learned in May 2016.  Last May Eagle County Voters – voted to support the proposed (2) Tax Increases for the Fire District and Ambulance District – thereby increasing the cost of running Vail Mountain and Beaver Creek.

So what did VR do?

Answer:  They passed on their increase costs – by (now) charging $10.00/per day/per car for (formerly FREE) Skier Parking at  Beaver Creek.  That’s what.

Looking Ahead?  You might want to ask yourself – what the future cost of Skiing at Vail and Beaver Creek might be – should the Eagle County Voters – vote to approve all these proposed Tax Increases.  FACT:  Our School Districts Ballot Issue(s)  (3A & 3B) together constitute the single largest proposed Property Tax Increase in the history of Eagle County…Are YOUR salary increases keeping up – with your cost of living increases?



Eagle County Treasurers Office – Weighs In

by  Clayton Moore

Weights In…On what ECT?

This past week our Eagle County Treasurer’s Office – published a Public Record Document – aimed at promoting their annual “Tax Sale”.

The ECT has given a Name to their Document:  The OFFICIAL list of all Eagle County Businesses and Individuals “least likely to Vote for any new Tax Increase”.

You see, all the names and businesses on the Treasurers (just published) list have the same thing in common:  They are all currently DELIQUENT paying their (current/last years) Eagle County Property Taxes.  (Click Here)

Per Colorado State Statute – all County’s in Colorado can (and do) hold an annual “Tax Sale”.  This is the time of year when any (individual or business) can buy (read: pay someone else’s) Delinquent Property Tax bill.

Why would someone take the time (and their cash) to do that?

Answer:  Because (this year) our Office of the Treasurer (like all Colorado) Counties can legally promise the “investor” a 10% return on their money.  That’s Why.

Background:  Any Property that has a “Tax Lien” against it – cannot have the ownership/title/deed transferred to a new individual (read: new owner) or business until the current “Tax Lien” has been paid for.  Plus 10%…at least in this year.

Contact the Eagle County Treasurer’s Office – for more information.  (Click Here)



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