John Spezia: Commenting on the ‘Our View’ editorial on annexation |

John Spezia: Commenting on the ‘Our View’ editorial on annexation

After my presentation last week to the editorial board, along with the developers and the pro annexation group,  I was curious to read the Steamboat Pilot & Today’s Our View on the annexation. Below I list the editorial board’s points with my comments following.

  • Community plans are not the law, they are just guiding documents — What is the point of developing comprehensive plans if they are not followed?
  • West Steamboat Neighborhoods was never intended to be an affordable housing project — The public spent a great deal of time developing the West of Steamboat Springs Area Plan with a major goal of affordable housing.
  • This is not the Steamboat 700 project —While smaller it has many of the same flaws.
  • A single development will not offset housing needs — If the city had a affordable housing program in place, recommended by the Steamboat Springs Community Area Plan in 1993, we would have many affordable housing developments already.
  • West Steamboat Neighborhoods is not a perfect solution — We’re asking for a balanced solution.
  • West Steamboat Neighborhoods is a growth strategy to maintain community character — How can we maintain character when we leave out part of the community with affordable housing needs?
  • “They are basically shutting the door on growth and it is is ludicrous to think another developer will come … to create valuable housing.”— If the city would bring funds and land to the table like other western Colorado ski towns with successful affordable housing programs, we would create valuable housing — affordable housing not expensive houses.
  • Delay only puts us further behind — We have delayed the implementation of a viable affordable housing plan since the 1980 SSCAP affordable housing recommendations because “it would hurt our economy.” That is code for cutting into profits. 
  • West Steamboat Neighborhoods is revenue neutral — We may pay $12 million if the development falters and $30 million of unfunded roadwork if there are no State grants .

A “no” vote is a vote asking for long-term, sustainable solutions for our community.

John Spezia

Steamboat Springs

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