City of Steamboat Springs turns down Hayden's request to help fund water project

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— The town of Hayden is trying to figure out how to pay for a new water tank now that the city of Steamboat Springs has decided not to pitch in on the project.

Hayden Mayor Jim Haskins said Town Manager David Torgler and Public Works Director Sam Barnes met with Steamboat city officials recently to discuss the possibility of Steamboat helping to pay for the $3 million water project. The town of Hayden’s obligation is about $1 million.

The water tank would be located at Yampa Valley Regional Airport and would improve water service at both the airport and in Hayden. Haskins said Hayden officials thought Steamboat might help pay for the project because of the high percentage of airport travelers who use the facility to vacation in Steamboat.

“The bottom line was, why not ask,” Haskins said Wednesday.

Steamboat City Manager Deb Hinsvark said she was caught off guard by the funding request and did not think it was appropriate for the city to help pay for the project. Hinsvark said she felt that way because YVRA’s financial contribution to the project already has been covered. It is the town of Hayden that needs to decide how it is going to come up with its third of the cost.

“Utilities are rate based, and they need to figure out a way to pay for this through rates and grants,” Hinsvark said.

Routt County owns and operates YVRA. County Manager Tom Sullivan said Wednesday that about two-thirds, or $2 million, of the project could be paid for by the county. About $1.2 million would go to the water tank and another $750,000 would be spent to install a new water line that would go from the general aviation building to the aircraft rescue and firefighting building. Sullivan said the Federal Aviation Administration would not help fund such a project.

Even though Steamboat is not offering to help pay, Haskins said the meeting with Steamboat officials was useful because of information provided by Winnie DelliQuadri, who helps secure grants for the city. Haskins said Hayden could benefit from a grant program being offered this year by the Colorado Department of Local Affairs.

“If there are DOLA funds available, we’re going to apply for them,” Haskins said.

The water tank is needed at YVRA, which is located within Hayden town limits, to provide adequate pressure for fire suppression. The town of Hayden also sees it as an opportunity to upgrade its water infrastructure. A new tank at YVRA would provide redundancy because it would be looped into the town’s water system. A looping system would also keep stagnant water from sitting in pipes.

“Right now we’re actually having to dump treated water onto the ground from the hydrants, and that’s throwing money away,” Haskins said.

Hayden officials will hold a meeting with the Routt County Board of Commissioners at 6 p.m. May 9 at Hayden Town Hall to discuss the project and funding options.

To reach Matt Stensland, call 970-871-4247 or email mstensland@SteamboatToday.com

Comments

John St Pierre 12 months ago

Might this really be for the Casino.... does this also mean that any development around the airport will pay their share of this also down the road???? Guess I'm confused about how the airport has operated this long without it??

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