Steamboat retailers sold $390,000 in lottery tickets in 2013

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— The Colorado Lottery reported this week that retailers selling lottery tickets in the city of Steamboat Springs generated more than $390,000 in lottery proceeds in 2013.

For those who purchased lottery tickets that didn’t pan out, there’s solace in the fact that a variety of governments and entities in Routt County received $863,575 back from the lottery in fiscal year 2013 in the form of grants from Great Outdoors Colorado.

The biggest share of that amount was the $600,000 devoted to the Nature Conservancy’s Dry Fork open space project on the Yampa River. The city of Steamboat Springs used a $25,000 GOCO grant last year to create a plan for Emerald Mountain Park. And in 2012, a $300,000 grant was awarded for rivers access improvements on the Yampa.

Steamboat used its $25,000 for the Emerald Mountain Park plan to determine that the area is best left in a natural state. However, it anticipates rerouting some existing hiking and Nordic ski trails as well as installing small, overnight yurts for a close-to-town backcountry experience. The plan was approved by the city Jan. 24.

Other grants that came back to Routt County in 2013 include: $62,340 for revitalization of Decker Park in Oak Creek; $44,525 for improvements at Lake Village Park in Hayden; $16,710 to the city of Steamboat for trail work by its youth corps; and $115,000 for operations on the Yampa River by the Colorado State Parks.

The lottery returned more than 93 cents of every dollar collected in 2013 and has provided $58 million to projects in Routt County since it was established in 1992, spokeswoman Brooke Christopher said.

The lottery routes as much as 50 percent of available funds to GOCO, capped at $35 million, but adjusted for inflation, which yielded $57 million in 2012. Another 40 percent goes to the Conservation Trust Fund and is distributed on a per-capita basis to cities, counties and special districts for recreation and open space projects. Ten percent goes to state park projects. Anything left over goes to the BEST Rural School Capital Construction Assistance Fund.

To reach Tom Ross, call 970-871-4205, email tross@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @ThomasSRoss1

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