by Carolina King
County commissioners are considering new revenue sources to repair and maintain roads, and a member of the Road and Bridge Committee has developed a spreadsheet tool to assist them.
On Monday, June 11, commissioners and the committee convened a work session during which committee member Henry Jupille displayed his sophisticated spreadsheet tool, which he calls a “revenue blender.” With the tool, they can examine the results of blending combinations of new sales tax revenues and a potential mill levy with various road and bridge projects and scenarios, to come up with a solid plan to present to voters for the 2019 ballot.
According to Jupille, the reason Ouray County roads are in such sad shape is they have been short-changed with 30 years of no new taxes. The county population has grown, but the budget has not, and as Jupille stated later, common sense will tell you that more driving on gravel causes more degradation.
Jupille said the roads are extremely behind on maintenance. For example, a typical gravel road loses one inch of gravel in a year. Ouray County has 300 miles of gravel roads, but the current budget affords fresh gravel on only seven to 10 miles a year.
A lot of effort went into driving and analyzing all of the Ouray County roads and putting that information into his spreadsheet tool, which prioritizes roads by...