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Bond Committees Present Mayor with Recommendations

After more than three months and 90 hours of meetings, the 2017 general obligation bond (“GO bond”) stakeholder committees, led by Executive Committee Chair Roxane White, today presented Mayor Michael B. Hancock with their final project recommendations.

The proposed package of citywide projects totals $749 million. Half of the funds are dedicated to transportation and mobility projects based on concerns from throughout the community about aging infrastructure and changing modes of transportation. The other half of the funds will be used to improve, replace, or build new infrastructure in parks, arts and cultural facilities, police and fire stations, and other city buildings.

“I want to thank each of the 60+ volunteer committee members who participated in this bottom-up, community-driven process,” Mayor Hancock said. “They listened to the needs of our residents and crafted a smart investment package that will make it easier to get around town and improve the facilities we’re all so proud of.”

Over the next few weeks, Mayor Hancock will work closely with City Council leadership to determine if additional adjustments to the project list are needed, staying within the city’s range of $800 million to $900 million. City Council is expected to refer the final proposal to the November ballot in August.

“Five subcommittees had difficult decisions to make during this process. The Executive Committee then had to further prioritize into a package of projects that balanced needs around deferred maintenance with the desires of the public, city agencies, city-owned facilities, and City Council and put the projects into an equitable, citywide context,” said Executive Committee Chair Roxane White. “I’m incredibly proud of the work our committees did to reach a unanimous decision and, I speak on behalf of all of the committee members when I say it was an honor to serve the Mayor and the people of Denver.”

The diverse, 60+ volunteer committee members were tasked with thoroughly examining the capital facilities and infrastructure needs of Denver and making project recommendations for bond funding. Their committees focused on five programmatic areas: transportation and mobility, parks and recreation, city-owned facilities, safety facilities and arts and culture. The Executive Committee was responsible for balancing the recommendations of each of the subcommittees and prioritizing them based on citywide needs to finalize their recommended list of projects. Committees were provided foundational criteria that primarily focused on project readiness, bond funding eligibility (e.g., serves a government purpose and has at least a 10-year useful life), equity, cost considerations, and critical system needs.

The city began the GO bond process in 2016 by engaging the Denver community in a conversation about the enhancements they want in their neighborhoods and throughout the city. With six public meetings, a map-based online tool, City Council engagement and comment cards located at libraries and recreation centers, the city received more than 3,000 investment ideas. The stakeholder phase of the GO bond process saw hundreds more emails from residents advocating for projects and each stakeholder committee meeting featured a public comment period.

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