Storm Drainage Fee Bond Language

On Tuesday, July 26th at 7pm, Longmont City Council will be voting on whether to approve a resolution to submit a ballot question to be voted on on election day (November 8, 2022). If Council approves the resolution, voters would be asked to approve issuing up to $20 million of storm drainage revenue bonds to finance the completion of the Resilient St Vrain flood mitigation Project (RSVP). On Tuesday night, City Council can either approve the proposed ballot language, modify the language and approve, or neither approve the language nor put the language on the ballot.

Stand is asking that City Council amend the proposed ballot language to include the following language (in red) ensuring that the City will not use our Storm Drainage fees to destroy Bank Swallow habitat at Roger’s Grove during flood mitigation work:

Without imposing new taxes or increasing existing taxes, and while preserving the established Bank Swallow habitat at Roger’s Grove, shall the City of Longmont be authorized to borrow up to $20,000,000 for the purpose of financing storm drainage system improvements, including but not limited to improvements to the St. Vrain Creek drainageway from Sunset Street to Hover Street to protect downstream areas from future flooding; and shall the borrowing be evidenced by bonds, loan agreements, or other financial obligations payable solely from the City’s storm drainage enterprise revenues and be issued at one time or in multiple series at a price above, below or equal to the principal amount of such borrowing and with such terms and conditions, including provisions for redemption prior to maturity with or without payment of premium, as the City may determine? 

Please consider showing your support for Bank Swallows at the Council meeting by wearing green and signing up to speak during public invited to be heard.

If you are unable to attend the meeting or are unable/unwilling to speak, please consider sending an email to Council urging them to consider adding language protecting the Bank Swallow colony at Roger’s Grove in the ballot measure. 

You may contact City Council using the following link: City Council and Mayor Contact Form

Some potential talking points for an email to Council are below:

  • Any plans the City might consider to use storm drainage fee bond $$ to mitigate future flooding along the St. Vrain Creek must be designed so our bank swallow habitat will not be destroyed.
  • I do not want my tax dollars nor fees used by the City to wipe out the Bank Swallow habitat at Rogers Grove.
  • Please include language in the flood mitigation plans in the area of Rogers Grove that will ensure protection of the nesting habitat of Bank Swallows.
  • Our St. Vrain greenway, particularly near Rogers Grove, is a very special natural environment including the presence of nesting Bank Swallows who migrate many thousands of miles every spring/summer to have babies. Please use your authority as our council and representatives to ensure protection of this precious and rare habitat for this species, which is listed as “a species of special concern” in Longmont’s Wildlife Management Plan.
  • I understand the favored option for Longmont’s flood mitigation project in Roger’s Grove will almost certainly wipe out the rare nesting Bank Swallow habitat, which currently hosts 30-50 nesting pairs of the smallest of our North American swallows. These special, threatened birds travel every April from Central and S. America and the Eastern Caribbean to nest and have babies. I don’t believe I can support a ballot measure allowing my storm drainage fee increase to be used to ruin this habitat.
  • Please use your position as our elected city officials to direct City staff involved with flood mitigation plans to come up with a plan to protect our special, rare, and sensitive Bank Swallow colony habitat by Roger’s Grove. I will continue to monitor this development and will vote on the proposed ballot measure accordingly.
Here’s a KGNU Nature Almanac recording from 2018 featuring the Bank Swallows from Roger’s Grove: July Nature Almanac–A Colony of Bank Swallows

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