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Budget talks begin Tuesday at Cortez council meeting

City departments to request 2018 funds in workshop
Cortez City Hall is at 123 Roger Smith Ave.

The Cortez City Council will focus on planning for 2018 in its Tuesday workshop and meeting.

In the workshop at 5:30 p.m. in the Mesa Verde Room in City Hall, the public works and planning and building departments will present budget documents for 2018.

During the regular meeting, at 7:30 p.m. in council chambers, the board will vote on several resolutions that may affect next year’s budget, such as the purchase of the old Montezuma-Cortez High School site and the creation of a Public Art Advisory Committee. Both meetings are open to the public. The regular meeting includes two comment periods.

The city’s 2018 budget hearings will begin with a presentation from Finance Manager Kathi Moss on the general fund. Public Works Director Phil Johnson and Planning and Building Director Sam Proffer will present their proposed 2018 budgets. The council will give feedback but will not vote on budget-related items. The meetings are the first of several budget hearings before council votes on the final budget at the end of the year.

In the regular meeting, the council will consider approving the purchase of 14 acres from the Re-1 School District on the former high school site for $345,000. The resolution would be contingent upon the city receiving a Great Outdoors Colorado grant and on the safe demolition and removal of the old building, which is in progress. If the conditions are met, the city hopes to build a park at the site. It also plans to sell a 3-acre parcel to the Montezuma Housing Authority to build an affordable housing complex, according to a memo by City Manager Shane Hale.

“The closing date could be as late as next fall, given the requirements that we’d need to fulfill from GOCO prior to closing,” he wrote.

Another item on the agenda is an ordinance that would create a Public Art Advisory Committee, a goal several Cortez artists have been working toward since March. If approved, the committee will evaluate all proposed public arts projects and make recommendations to the city council regarding their installation and upkeep. It comprises about seven members, including a youth representative and a city representative.

During the meeting, the council will decide whether to approve a first reading of the ordinance and schedule a hearing for the final reading.

Other action

During the regular meeting, the council will:

Hold a public hearing to vote on the final reading of an ordinance establishing uniform definitions for sales and use tax purposes in the city.Vote on a streetlight installation on Andrew Lane and 13th Street.Consider appointing Holly Tatnall to the Cortez Historical Preservation Board.Vote on a resolution approving the purchase of property on U.S. Highway 491 from Bill and JoAnne Teetzel for $10,204.50, in order to build a gateway sign.

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