While Mayor Steve Bach was talking about the need for Colorado Springs Utilities to pony up some dough for stormwater, the city-owned utility was tweeting about how much money it has already invested.
“From 2000-2011, our customers have invested $165 million in wastewater system improvements, sediment control and wetlands restoration,” read one tweet.
The mayor is making the city’s stormwater needs a priority.
Bach thinks he can find $7 million in the 2013 budget for stormwater. He also wants to take up to $7 million more from the 2012 budget if revenues come in higher than projected.
Bach also has asked the City Council to direct Colorado Springs Utilities to come up with an additional $12 million to $15 million.
In an interview in March, Utilities CEO Jerry Forte said the issue isn’t who is responsible for stormwater.
“The issue is more how to fund it. That’s the issue that we need to as a community wrestle with and decide,” he said.
“If Utilities were to fund it, it would obviously be something that would be passed on to utility ratepayers,” Forte added. “One way or another, there would need to be some revenue that would be raised to be able to do that.”
During Thursday’s press conference, Bach reiterated that Utilities should be involved.
While he was speaking, Utilities was tweeting away.
Here are their tweets in the order in which they were sent:
We recognize the need to manage storm flows in our waterways to protect people, property and our pipes that cross local waterways.
From 2000-2011, our customers have invested $165 million in wastewater system improvements, sediment control and wetlands restoration.
We’ve invested $40 million to the Fountain Creek District once SDS is delivering water to Colorado Springs in 2016.
We’ve allocated $2.2 million to Pueblo County for managing sedimentation in Fountain Creek in Pueblo.
We’ve allocated $300,000 to the Fountain Creek Watershed District for a flood control study and District administration.
A multi-million dollar project is under way to address sedimentation and erosion on a section of Fountain Creek in El Paso County.
We believe stormwater flows must be managed regionally, to fully protect our community’s investments.
Unmanaged storm flows outside of Colorado Springs city limits can jeopardize investments made within the city.
So far, we’ve identified approx. 241 capital projects for 2013 budget, only half of which can be funded at this time.
Approx. 30% of Springs Utilities budget is fuel, capital is 27.9% and labor is 17%.