Parks, recreation, open space task force named

With roughly $177,000 in Ballot Issue 1A funding available in 2009 for parks recreation and open space projects, the Archuleta County Board of County Commissioners named the members of a seven-person task force to help them identify projects and administer 1A funds, during their monthly meeting Nov. 7.

During the session, the board appointed Doug Call, Beverly Compton, Mat DeGraaf, Larry Lynch, Jim Shaffer, Gwen Taylor and Michael Whiting to the Parks, Recreation, Open Space and Trails task force (PROST).

The seven members were chosen from a pool of 20 applicants and will serve for one year.

Among their chief duties, members of the task force will facilitate the execution of the Regional Parks, Recreation, Open Space and Trails Master Plan and will make recommendations for spending Ballot Issue 1A funds earmarked for parks recreation and open space.

According to Archuleta County Finance Director Don Warn, there is about $177,000 in 1A funds designated for parks and recreation in 2009 and about $250,000 in 1A parks and recreation dollars that will be rolled over from 2008 into the 2009 kitty.

In addition to making 1A spending recommendations, the group will help prioritize capital projects based on the master plan, act as a work group for specific projects, review funding opportunities, pursue grants and will act as a “voice of the community” regarding parks, recreation and open space issues.

In addition to the seven member team, one representative from the town and one from the county will serve as ex-officio, or non-voting, members.

The move to form the task force comes following the board’s Sept. 16 decision to allocate 15 percent of the $1.18 million in Ballot Issue 1A funds in 2009 for parks and recreation related projects and expenses.

To date, and as part of the county’s 2008 parks and recreation Ballot Issue 1A expenditures, dollars have been used on a trail plan that will link downtown Pagosa Springs, the Pagosa Lakes area and ultimately Aspen Springs — a project called the “Springs to Springs Trail.”