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    Jeffco Commissioners Re-evaluate Capital Improvements Plan (CIP): Will Proceed with Only the Most Critical Infrastructure Needs

    On Tuesday, April 5, 2011, the Jefferson County Board of Commissioners (BCC) modified its recommended 2011 Capital Improvements Plan (CIP) and will proceed with only the most critical needs. In addition to tabling several projects, the Board has cancelled the issuing of an additional $11 million in public debt through Certificates of Participation (COPs).

    “With tight revenues projected to continue into the future, prioritizing and addressing the most urgent infrastructure needs is one of the highest priorities of the Board,” said Commissioner Don Rosier.

    All programs on the CIP were reviewed at the April 5th Staff Briefing. “As a result, we put some major projects on hold and took some off the list. Completing all projects on that list would exceed the amount of money we have to spend by millions,” Commissioner Faye Griffin explained. “Instead we pared down the list by almost $60 million.”

    “This is a big change,” Commissioner John Odom commented. “We are changing directions and not moving forward with many projects. There is a new fiscal restraint with the Board of County Commissioners.”

    Off the list is the purchase of a vacant Target building on West Colfax and an office building on Parfet Street in Lakewood. Both were considered for Public Health, and the Target building was being proposed to house combined Sheriff’s services.

    Also removed was the proposed service hub at 44th and Wadsworth in Wheat Ridge. Instead, the Commissioners will explore relocating Arvada Public Health Clinics and Arvada and Lakewood Motor Vehicle offices into a building to be built on county owned land adjacent to the Head Start/Russell Elementary School building saving on rental costs and increasing accessibility for residents.

    The Commissioners will go forward with the project to replace the central plant and mechanical systems at the 26-year-old detention center, and increase space for the crime lab and evidence vault. However, new buildings for the Community Corrections or Work Release programs have been placed on indefinite hold.

    “It is imperative to address outdated infrastructure in the detention center,” Rosier said. “The mechanical systems in the jail have already doubled their projected life span, and replacement systems would operate more efficiently and economically.”

    Odom, who also serves on the Community Corrections Board, said, “Community Corrections is a cost effective alternative to incarceration. It costs on average $37,000 a year per inmate at the jail, compared to $7,000 at a community corrections facility. A new facility on the Jeffco campus would not suit the needs of the users especially when it comes to transportation as many of them work or volunteer very close to the current location.”

    The commissioners will wait on selling the New York Building in Lakewood, where Community Corrections is now housed, instead working with the current contractor, ICCS, to determine the best solution to future facility needs.

    Put on hold for the present is the building of a Sheriff’s mountain substation on land purchased for that purpose between Evergreen and Conifer.

    Money to finance the CIP projects will come from 2009 Certificates of Participation that were issued after the last payment was made on the Administration and Courts Facility, freeing up $7 million a year in bond payments for the 18-year-old building. Some of the funds are already being spent on energy upgrades on the county campus and county libraries, and purchasing automatic book sorters for libraries.

    April 6, 2011

    Last Updated: 5-31-2013