Comments on Gazette Article: Rejection of stormwater plan could mean lawsuit for Colorado Springs


Monica, this reply addresses your November 6, 2014 article about the demise of issue 1B.

1.  The fee ended in 2009, not 2011. A referred measure is NOT an "initiative," which comes from a citizen-signed petition. If 1B promised "114 projects" listed on the ballot, which could be dropped
     without voter approval, why did their postcard say it was for "230" projects? When will you write
     about their string of documented lies in the last election before publicizing their next swindle?
     When will you report the falsity of their claim that the federal EPA has authority over local rain
     and drainage; a federal court has already ruled it does not, because rain is not a pollutant.

2. Where is Utilities' authority to pledge tax money? Why must our taxes go up for such a promise?

3. Since SDS was about taking OUR water from the Pueblo Reservoir, why can anyone promise WE
    will raise OUR taxes to improve drainage infrastructure in PUEBLO? Let them fix their own
    drainage problem. It's not our fault they are down river. Besides, aren't they part of the "region"
    that was to fix it? If they think a promise was made that is legally enforceable, let them sue.

4. When will you report the total City budget (excluding CSU) going from $396 million this year
    to $445 million in 2015? Why isn't any of that windfall going to drainage issues?

5. When will you report the $46 million the City appropriated for drainage issues over the past
    two years, BUT DID NOT SPEND because it would chip away at the problem and reduce the
    pressure for another tax and another layer of government?

6. When will you report the rampant City violations of issue 300 that voters approved in 2009 to
    stop this phony storm water enterprise and its "fee" the first time?

7.  When will you report the $13 million that enterprise illegally gave the City after 300 won?

8.  When will you report the wasted $45+ million SWE illegally collected over three years?

9.  When will you stop being used by the government, calling it a "fee" when it is a tax? Will you
     say the same thing when government imposes a fire fee, police fee, parks fee, road fee, etc.
     and says it's not a TABOR violation "because we say so?"

10. When will you report the subsidy of developers, who still adds to the problem on every
      project? How can the backlog be reduced when the backlog keeps growing because the City
      and County won't change their land development policy towards those who donate to the
      politicians' campaigns?

11. If CSU made the promise, why not report CSU costing us over $200 MILLION by gambling
     on the natural gas futures market? That money would have reduced the inflated backlog. The
     Council's response was to give the CEO, Jerry Forte, a six-figure phased in pay raise!

12. When will you report the history of published estimates of the size of the backlog? It has been
      growing $75 million to $100 million per year. How would $22 million (55% of the $40 million
      annual tax for 20 years), ever even freeze the skyrocketing alleged backlog, much less cut it?

13. When will you report $100,000 in public funds Regional Building spent in August to "educate"
      voters? The funds given the task force by the city, county, and Utilities? Why wasn't that
      pre-ballot issue planning an illegal campaign donation? (Because they spent it before the issue
      was given a ballot title).

14. When will you write about the INTENTIONAL POLICY decision not to fix the problem so they
      could create a "need" for a new tax? List the yearly City and County drainage spending for the
      past 30 years. Match that to the growth in their total budgets and new construction approved.

15.  You wrote, "Pace said by his estimation controlling the water flow in Fountain Creek was part
       of the deal Colorado Springs Utilities agreed to in 2009..." Is an "estimation" a legally-binding
       promise? By the way, 2009 was the year issue 300 was on the ballot. Wasn't its passage part of
       the discussions? WHERE is the written contractual promise? Where is the list of SPECIFIC
       projects to be built? A conversation about trying to address the problem is worthless. Being in
       government, Sal Pace should know not to trust the government!

16. Pace threatens to "revoke the permit" based on fuzzy promises. SDS has been built; does he
      think he can demolish it? Authorize a sheriff's raid to turn off the tap? What an idiot!

17.  CSU says the vague "promise" was to address FUTURE growth, which the City can do now
       simply by making developers pay enough for infrastructure to prevent additional flooding.

18. "City Councilman Merv Bennett, who chairs the Utilities Board, said Utilities has committed to
      spending $131 million to mitigate flooding and make improvements along Fountain Creek."
      Why was this not reported during the election?

I suggest you read CAREFULLY the articles at Government's goal of stealing more
from us for this dumb idea is folly. A third ballot issue would be sheer harassment.

Douglas Bruce