Ballot initiative could fund fix for Entrance to Aspen
November 19, 2007
ASPEN Four-lane advocate Jeffrey Evans on Monday proposed a Pitkin County ballot initiative seeking an annual tax increase of $4.6 million to fund one of his proposed solutions to the Entrance to Aspen.Evans wants to ask voters to approve the tax increase and a county debt as high as $60 million to build four lanes at the entrance. County officials have five days to review the proposed initiative.If it is approved, Evans would have six months to circulate petitions and collect the required signatures to put the issue on the November 2008 general election ballot.”It is tied to a specific plan,” Evans said, citing one of two city of Aspen ballot initiatives calling for a change of use of open space at the entrance.In October, however, a special hearing officer deemed the city ballot initiatives “administrative” and inappropriate for a vote.Evans and Curtis Vagneur are appealing the ruling in district court.If a judge denies the city initiatives, Evans said he’ll go forward with the funding initiative anyway. The money would go to other county road projects, he said.Because a decision on the entrance historically has fallen to city of Aspen voters, Evans said the proposed Pitkin County initiative is a way for county residents to speak up on the controversial issue.Charles Agar’s e-mail address firstname.lastname@example.org.