Steamboat City Council to consider new fees |

Steamboat City Council to consider new fees

Revenues expected to cover staff costs, not add to bottom line

Jack Weinstein

— The Steamboat Springs City Council will consider first readings of two new fees that city officials say are intended simply to cover the costs of processing those requests.

If $25 fees for sales tax applications and special activity permits are approved tonight, they would be considered on second reading and could take effect as soon as March.

Deputy City Manager Deb Hinsvark said the fees are expected to cover costs that the city hasn't tried to recoup in the past. She said by law the city can't collect more fees than what it costs to administer the service.

Hinsvark said the fees came from discussions about how the city could generate additional revenue and reduce expenditures, or strategic initiatives. The revenue from sales tax applications could amount to $7,500 per year, while fees for special activity permits would generate about $1,100 per year.

"These aren't humongous things," Hinsvark said. "It's an attempt to get started in the right direction of paying attention to our costs of doing business."

Hinsvark added that the sales tax application fee wouldn't cover all the city's costs, but that it's a start. She said the $25 fee would cover staff time to process those applications, as well as printing and mailing costs. The special activity permit fee is intended to cover staff time to process the requests and the cost to provide services such as closing streets and providing community service officers for those special events.

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City Council members gave an initial and informal go-ahead for the fees during a presentation of strategic initiatives in January.

Also tonight, the City Council will discuss several fire-related issues. Council members will hear presentations from city staff and the rural Steamboat Springs Area Fire Protection District in response to a consultant's report about local fire and emergency services. They also will be presented with a report about firefighter salaries and are scheduled to discuss possible privatization of ambulance services.

To reach Jack Weinstein, call 970-871-4203 or email

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