by Mark Reaman
Cloud seeding request
Upper Gunnison River Water Conservancy District board member Steve Glazer asked the Crested Butte Town Council for financial assistance last month with the board’s cloud seeding program and help with paying for the flow gauge on Coal Creek. He asked for an annual $2,500 expenditure with the gauge and $2,000 for cloud seeding.
Town manager Todd Crossett said it is estimated that cloud seeding adds 5 to 10 percent more moisture to the area each winter.
“That is a good value for water augmentation,” noted Glazer.
The council will consider the requests during its 2016 budget and community grant deliberations this fall.
Councils support transportation tax
Council agreed to support ballot issue 5A. That measure would impose a 1 percent sales tax across the county to fund the Gunnison Valley Rural Transportation Authority. Currently citizens in Gunnison pay .35 percent while the rest of the county contributes .6 percent in sales tax for the RTA. The RTA helps with the local airline program and intra-valley bus service.
Campaign manager Molly Mugglestone explained to the council that the measure earmarks money for senior transportation in the valley and would bolster both the air and bus programs. She said the RTA has a solid budget that includes a lot of grants but is maxed out. “RTA manager Scott Truex says that under the current scenario the RTA can have a really good bus system or a really good air program, but not both,” she said.
Mugglestone is coordinating a major push for the tax measure on the Western State Colorado University campus. She said students frequently use the bus between Gunnison and Crested Butte and will play a big role in whether or not the measure passes.
The Mt. Crested Butte town council also passed a resolution of support for the RTA tax proposal.