Granby’s 2022 budget funds future planning, long-awaited projects
With a larger budget than ever before, Granby plans to make a number of investments for 2022.
Trustees unanimously approved the budget Tuesday night, though some trustees noted a few items for additional funding might come up throughout the year.
The total proposed budget for all town funds increased to $13.6 million for the upcoming year, nearly $3 million more than 2021. The town is conservatively projecting $14.7 million in revenue next year.
A land sale — namely the Granby trails that will be sold to a land trust but remain the town’s property — will make up $1.5 million of that revenue. Sales and use taxes for 2022 are projected at $6.5 million, a 5% increase over 2021.
However, Granby continues to balloon in town revenue and could see much more than that next year. Year to date, sales and use tax for this year is 25% over 2020.
About $1.6 million will go toward public safety, courts and code enforcement, $3 million for capital improvements including grant spending, $844,450 toward parks and recreation, $455,875 for economic development, $2.1 million in streets and facilities, and $1.8 million for general services.
Next year, the town will be investing in updating the comprehensive plan, which should outline the vision for Granby. The town has not updated its master plan since 1985 and received a grant this year with work expected to continue throughout 2022.
The master plan should provide guidance into the town’s approach on a number of other items Granby is funding next year, like the ongoing downtown infill incentive program, streetscape improvements, traffic calming and housing.
The town budget highlights its plan to make some strategic investments next year into diverse affordable housing units to address the local housing shortage.
Granby will also be contributing a 10% match to the Main Street Open for Business Grant. The $757,140 grant from the state will provide a number of upgrades to some of the downtown businesses that are also contributing a 10% match.
One major project for 2022 the town is already moving forward with is the Pathway to City Market. The town hopes to finish the half-built path next year and design work is underway.
Granby is also purchasing three police vehicles next year and upgrading a bobcat.
The town will be adding one new full-time position in 2022, a water operator for the town’s new West Service Area. That brings the total number of full-time employees for the town up to 39.
Granby remains debt free with the exception of some minimal leases for office equipment and two enterprise fund loans. The town’s operating reserve provides for over 10 months of expenses, with an overall increase in the town’s various reserves projected at $1.3 million for 2022.
In other business:
• Trustees approved Grand Construction Associates as the contractor to complete the work outlined for the Main Street Open for Business Grant. Owner Barry Young helped the town and Destination Granby define the project, and his proposal for the work was the only one submitted to the town.
Approval of Young as the contractor is contingent on an agreeable contract for payment.
• The trustees held another executive session on the Granby Ranch Omnibus Agreement. When a public commenter asked if the town could be more specific about what was being negotiated, the mayor said it had to do with “contractual items” not related to the Planned Development Overlay District, which would have to go through the planning and zoning process.
• During the executive session, the town also discussed negotiations related to the town’s attainable housing parcel. Following that session, the board withdrew the $30,000 settlement agreement the town had previously offered Mark Unicome, the former developer of the Rodeo Apartments.
The town attorney said he would initiate legal proceedings to clear the title to the parcel.
• The board approved a two-year extension for the gravel pit for Sun River Run Ranch. The gravel operation stays on Sun’s property and the company changed nothing with the renewal.
• Trustees approved improvements at Dollar General for initial acceptance. The town didn’t initially sign off on the owner’s improvements around the building, finding it insufficient. Since then, the property has added sod, seeding and storm drainage improvements that were satisfactory to the town.
• Trustees approved an infill grant for the Country Ace Hardware, reimbursing the company for some of the use tax on the store’s expansion and abating the town’s property tax on the added square footage for 10 years. Typically these grants happen before the construction, but the board never approved Ace’s application.
The board OK’d the grant with Trustee Chris Michalowski dissenting.
• The board also OK’d the budgets for its three general improvement districts: Grand Elk, Grand Elk No. 2 and Granby West.
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