GL budgets to protect lake water | SkyHiNews.com

GL budgets to protect lake water

Tonya Bina
Sky-Hi News
Grand Lake, CO Colorado

GRAND LAKE – From the looks of the 2011 Grand Lake draft budget, water is on the minds of town officials.

One significant budgetary line item in the total $2.3 million total budget proposes $25,000 in water quality legal contributions shared between the general and water funds, in part due to an amicus brief filed in October in support of a possible Supreme Court case concerning water transfers.

The town board hopes to “continue to advocate for Grand Lake water quality through local, regional and state policy,” according to Grand Lake Town Manager Shane Hale.

The 2011 budget uses $188,000 in reserves carried over from 2010, and continues the town’s hiring freeze with no salary increases and no cuts in benefits.

The town is, however, considering buying back hours of comp-time for three of its department heads as it closes out the 2010 fiscal year.

Of capital expenditures budgeted for 2011, the town plans to dedicate $2,500 for Gene Stover memorial at Lakefront Park. The town is also paying $32,000 for a biannual replacement of a Grand County Sheriff’s Office deputy car, and $30,000 for a public works flatbed truck, some of which would be reimbursed upon selling the existing flatbed.

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Other notable expenditures are snowmobile trail rehabilitation in Thomasson Park, with the use of county-granted Conservation Trust Funds in the amount of $13,350. The town is also continuing its $15,000 contribution to the snowmobile Trailgroomers organization out of a total $38,300 in town contributions to organizations and nonprofits.

One other donation is $500 to Grand Beginnings, with the caveat that if a childcare facility were to open in Grand Lake, the town will contribute another $1,000.

For personnel, the town board has opted to “hold the line” on 100 percent of health insurance subsidies for employees and dependents. Whether family receives health benefits depends on the longevity of employment.

Budgeted for this year are $147,515 in health, dental and life insurance benefits for the town’s 11 employees and family; that amount includes a projected 15 percent insurance hike in 2011.

Hale points out that although the town subsidizes insurance, the town employee salaries are “not on the high-end in the county,” saying the town board highly values supporting its employees through benefits.

Of the town’s total budget, 39 percent is attributed to personnel.

As far as the town’s new Pay as You throw program implemented in 2010, the enterprise fund earned $3,150 with a carry-over fund balance of $2,749. For 2011, the town budgeted a projected fund balance of $5,771.

The General fund 2011 budget amounts to $1.4 million, and the water fund 2011 budget comes in at $494,000.

The Marina Enterprise fund is projected to have a 2010 ending fund balance of $127,636. For 2011, the marina fund is budgeted to have an ending fund balance of $16,577.

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