THE HEALTHY RIVERS AND STREAMS FUND
On November 4, 2008, Pitkin County voters authorized a sales tax of .1% to be dedicated to establishing a Healthy Rivers and Streams Fund (Referendum 1A). The voters also authorized that the Pitkin County debt may be increased to an amount not to exceed $12 million in relation to this fund with a repayment out of the Healthy Rivers and Streams Fund. At the time the ballot question was certified it was anticipated that this tax would generate approximately $1 million per year. Even with the current economic uncertainties the successful passage of this ballot question affords the County many options and possibilities for protecting our rivers and streams. The ballot question outlined four specific objectives for the fund:
• Maintaining and improving water quality and quantity within the Roaring Fork watershed;
• Purchasing, adjudicating changes of, leasing, using, banking, selling, and protecting water rights for the benefit of the Roaring Fork watershed;
• Working to secure, create and augment minimum stream flows in conjunction with non-profits, grant agencies, and appropriate State and Federal agencies to ensure ecological health, recreational opportunities, and wildlife and riparian habitat; promoting water conservation; and
• Improving and constructing capital facilities that contribute to the objectives listed above.
HEALTHY RIVERS AND STREAMS CITIZEN ADVISORY BOARD
The Healthy Rivers and Streams Citizen Advisory Board assists the Board of County Commissioners of Pitkin County in administering the Healthy Rivers and Streams Fund Program and in furthering the objectives of the program as authorized by Pitkin County voters. The inaugural Advisory Board was appointed by the BOCC on September 9, 2009.
Board members must be residents of Pitkin County or the Roaring Fork Watershed http://www.roaringfork.org/images/maps/RF_Watershed_Map.pdf. A Board member may not hold office or appointment in any County or municipality nor be employed by any County or municipality during the term of appointment. There shall be a minimum of five (5) and a maximum of seven (7) members on the board.
Board member terms and additional provisions regarding the management and operation of the Healthy Rivers and Streams Fund can be found in the Bylaws adopted by the County commissioners on May 13, 2009.