Growth initiative gets local support |

Growth initiative gets local support

Aspen Times staff report

More than 20 elected officials from local governments around the state urged voters to support the Responsible Growth Initiative on this fall’s ballot, including several from the Roaring Fork Valley.

“Any local government doing good land-use planning should not fear Amendment 24,” Basalt town trustee Jacque Whitsitt said in a press release from the Western Colorado Congress. “Amendment 24 just includes citizens in the decision-making process and in the end helps create a plan that’s more accepted and known by community members.”

Other local leaders listed in the press release as supporters of Amendment 24 (the official name for the Smart Growth Initiative), include Pitkin County Commissioners Dorothea Farris and Mick Ireland, Basalt trustees Jonathan Fox-Rubin and Chris Lane, Carbondale trustee Krista Paradise and Basalt Mayor Rick Stevens.

Amendment 24 would require cities with more than 1,000 residents and counties with more than 10,000 to designate specific areas for development. All growth areas must be approved by voters and must also be served by a water and sewer utility.

The press release says Amendment 24 would educate citizens about growth and give them a chance to vote on it, promote responsible and affordable development and force neighboring governments to cooperate.

Developers and some local officials say the amendment would result in a moratorium on growth in nearly every community in the state.

The Pitkin County Commissioners voted 3-2 earlier this month to give voters here a chance to opt out of the rules established by the amendment.

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