John Scarffe, Nederland. Nederland Town departments and affiliated organizations displayed their funding needs during the 2017 budget charrette for the 2018 budget on August 22, 2017, at 6 p.m. at the Nederland Community Center. Represented with displays were the Community Center, the Food Pantry and Clothing Closet, Public Works and Police departments.
Town Treasurer Jennifer Hogan said the budget open house was an opportunity for the community to be informed about the Town’s budget and to get input for the 2018 budget, which will direct the actions of Town departments in the next year.
Public Works Director Chris Pelletier displayed lists and information about big projects in 2018 including the Biosolids and waste water treatment plant project, which has been in the works for at least a year, and the roads assessment, illustrating the maintenance needed on streets and roads in Town.
Community Center Staff members, Dawn Baumhover and Carole Handler, displayed lists and handouts of activities hosted by the Community Center. The Community Center houses the Amateur Radio Club, the Fitness Place, the multi-purpose meeting room, the Food Pantry and the Clothing Closet.
Maggie May, with the Nederland Food Pantry, displayed fresh produce grown in the long, narrow patio behind the Community Center. “Volunteers worked hard to clean it out,” May said. The mission of the Pantry is to relieve hunger and provide basic needs support to the Peak-to-Peak community in a respectful and compassionate manner.
The Pantry collaborates with Boulder County Housing and Human Services and the Veteran’s Mobile Agency to have representatives on–site at the Community Center from 10 a.m. until noon each first Thursday of the month.
In 2016, the pantry distributed 80,000 pounds of food to those in need and assisted 3,561 people in the fight against hunger in this service area. Since January 2017, the Food Pantry serves 325 people each month and has distributed more than 90,000 pounds of food this year.
The Food Pantry has taken the Clothing Closet under its umbrella, so the Community Center can provide food, water and clothing. The Clothing Closet will provide free clothing for people of the Peak to Peak Community, said Director Annette Treufeldt-Franck. The closet offers men’s clothes and boots. Needed right now are adult women’s and men’s clothes.
The Food Pantry and Clothing Closet are doing fund raising, and the organizations they approach for funds would like to see the Town of Nederland invest in what the organization provides, so they are asking for funding in the 2018 budget.
Marshal Paul Carrill said he is seeking salary parity for Nederland Police Officers and is asking for an increase for personnel salaries. Officers at other towns on the Front Range can make $20,000 more a year than those in Nederland.
He is asking for an increase in salaries over a three-year period to bring them up to parity with other officers on the Front Range. About 80 vacancies exist among police departments on the Front Range, Carrill said, and those towns have recognized the benefit of having a fully staffed and funded Police Department.
Key dates for the Town’s 2018 budget preparation started with the August 1 Budget Kick-off with a schedule presentation to the Board. Staff budget requests were due to the treasurer on August 9, and on August 22 was the Public Charrette. The first draft of the budget for all funds will be ready on September 12.
On October 12, a draft budget will be posted for public review with the budget hearing at the regular Trustees meeting on October 17. The deadline for public comment is on October 31. On November 21, the draft final 2018 budget will be presented for Trustee Information, and on December 5, the Town will pass the 2018 Budget for the Town and the Nederland Downtown Development Authority and certify the 2018 Mill Levy.
(Originally published in the August 31, 2017 print edition of The Mountain-Ear.)