What is School Board member – Kate Cocchiarela, Talking About???

by –   I’ve always had good math scores…

Dateline:  Eagle County, Colorado – 2nd week of May 2013

Topic:  Eagle County’s (elected) Public School Board votes to refinance existing School Bond debt at a lower interest rate.  Alleged annual savings – $531,219.00

ECT Comment:  Good.

School Board member – Kate Cocchiarela’s comment:  “The savings go directly to the taxpayers through slightly lower property taxes, not to the school district, said Kate Cocchiarela school board member.” (Click on graphic for full story)Kate-Cocchiarela-Small

Say What?  What is Kate talking about?

FACTOID:  No Eagle County Property Taxpayer will see “slightly lower Property taxes” because the School District is re-financing their existing Bond Debt.

What this means Kate (and others) is that the District will pay a little less in annual interest out of their annual budget each year through 2026.

At at time when our Public School Districts (over all) Math scores are being called into question…it is very disturbing to see an elected member of our School Board having statements like this – attributed to them!  How can Taxpayers reasonably expect good decisions from elected School Board members, when it seems (at least some of them) don’t understand the process?

FACTOID:  Because of Colorado’s TABOR law – it is true that our School Board must go to the voters to ask to “raise” the Public School Mill Levy – it is also a FACT that the School Board can (and already has) raised your Property Tax Mill Levy for the (exclusive) purpose of paying existing Bond debt – without asking the voters permission.

The School Bonds, Ms. Cocchiarela are “secured” by our Eagle County Real Property and the Mill Levy that is already assessed against our Property.  Turns out that the Bond holders require that the District be able to continue to pay that Bond debt – in the event that Property Values in Eagle County are assessed – lower.  Obviously, the protection of the Bond holders is assured by allowing the School District to compensate for lower assessed Property Values (by raising their Mill Levy – without voter approval) for the exclusive purpose of securing their ability to pay the Bond holders.

Got it, Ms. Cocchiarela….and et al?

Ms. Cocchiareal – the Eagle County Assessor (elected) is Mr. Mark Chapin (a very nice and affable fellow) he can be reached at 970.328.8640 and our Eagle County Treasurer (elected) Ms. Karen Scheafer is at 970.328.8868 – if you would like more information.

Going Forward:  The ECT folks request that Ms. Cocchiareal and Fishwrap reporter Randy Wyrick, work harder to assure Eagle County Taxpayers – more accuracy in printed statements attributed to the both of them!




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