City hits $4 million snag in financing road work |

City hits $4 million snag in financing road work

The Aspen City Council is expected to take up the issue of funding road programs at its meeting tonight.

The council gave its streets department the green light to begin work, even though no financing for street improvement projects is in place.

The city’s funding scheme fell apart after the state Supreme Court issued a decision two weeks ago directing government entities to receive voter approval for some transportation-funding plans. Specifically, the court ruled that if a government plans to use the money it expects to collect in the future as collateral for a loan, it needs an OK from the voters.

The city had planned to pay for street work with money borrowed against future revenues, but the court’s decision changed that. The money is also needed to pay a private company that will manage maintenance on 40 percent of the city’s streets for the next 15 years.

On Thursday, the City Council rejected a staff recommendation to borrow the money from the city’s day-care trust fund, but promised to consider other funding options to cover the nearly $4 million needed to pay for the work.

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