Endorsement: Snowmass water worth the investment | AspenTimes.com

Endorsement: Snowmass water worth the investment

Editor's note: The following endorsement also appears in today's Snowmass Sun.

The property tax proposed by the Snowmass Water and Sanitation District is a small price to pay to ensure running water at a low rate.

People use water in their homes every day. Snowmass Village, which is aiming to become a world-class resort, should not put itself at risk by having an inadequate water system.

To have the water cut off in their homes or condos because of leaky or broken pipes would be unacceptable to most people who choose to live or visit here.

The district is asking property owners to cover the cost of replacing its infrastructure. Voter approval of Issue 5A means property owners would annually pay $6.72 per $100,000 of a home's actual value.

The district could have spiked rates significantly and try to raise the funds, which would frustrate everyone, particularly high-volume users. That also would be a less reliable source of income.

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Instead, property owners will pay a low annual cost for this important investment in the community, and the district is taking a thoughtful approach to ensuring the life of its water and sewer lines.

That kind of thinking will save both money and water in the long run. Budgeted repairs and replacements are cheaper than unexpected ones, the district has said. Having fewer leaks also means the district will lose less water after it's treated, so it won't have to divert as much from Snowmass Creek.

Recent drought periods have proven the importance of conserving our water sources in the West. Ballot Measure 5A is a win for everyone who relies on Snowmass Creek for water. Whether voting by mail-in ballots or in person on Nov. 5, we encourage residents to vote "yes" on 5A.