Policy Bits ~ 5 Things to Know & Watch This Week
Oct 26 – Nov 1, 2015
~ Karly Malpiede AndrusPolicy Bits102615

I.    Front Range cities’ last-minute objections to Colorado’s First Ever Water Plan

  1. Colorado’s first ever Water Plan spells out how the state intends to supply water for the 10 million residents projected to live in the state by 2050, as well as facilitate thirsty industries and ensure ecological sustainability of our river systems. Cities would like more diversions from the Western Slope, whereas those on the Western Slope feel cities should engage in more conservation as they already divert 163B gallons/year. Comments on the July draft will be incorporated into the final report, expected Dec 10th. http://goo.gl/ucVbEv
  2. It’s important to remember the old west adage, ‘whiskey is for drinking and water is for fighting’ as we broach this subject as it still rings true today. This affects everyone in the state but especially developers in areas without water supplies. Some cities and counties may begin to request that developers identify water sources before any permits could be issued. In those areas that do not engage in sound water allocation practices the question becomes who else will lose their water access or how much costs for water delivery will increase, which will affect quality of life and the economy. In extreme cases those developments may run out of water, examples of which are emerging in CA which places even more pressure on the finite supplies of the Colorado River basin and its tributaries.

II.   New Lender for a New Market, Loans for Students attending Boot-Camps

  1. Skills Fund seeks to be a private lender and alternative accreditor for the fast-growing boot camp sector; which can help create good paying jobs that requires a much smaller amount of debt to acquire certification. Although, at an average $11,000 in fees for 11 weeks of training, this option is not readily available to many low income students. These loans will cover the total cost of attendance including a housing stipend making it possible for students to concentrate on learning. https://goo.gl/dWeHmQ
  2. Galvanize, an amazing shared space partner, who has hosted learning sessions about the best practices for shared work spaces, has three locations on the Front Range. They are one of just six boot camp providers that earned accreditation from Skills Fund, making this is an easily available option for local partners and residents.

III.   Denver Dog Park Dust-Up after Josephine Gardens Closure Announced

  1. Although Denver bought the 1.1 acre plot 4 years ago with the intention of building a future recreation center, many feel that was not well communicated to the community. It will close Oct 26 and a much smaller ~.25 acre park will eventually reopen http://goo.gl/glm4eO
  2. It is important for developers to remember that some people or even businesses may move to an area permanently because of the amenities that developers consider “interim”. Communication is key to this process but community developers also need to be cognizant that if people want dogs and we are building higher density product with no yards, dog parks and open space in general needs to be more than just an interim use.