Capital Improvements Program
Capital improvements are part of the city's infrastructure, and must keep pace with the community's needs.
The Capital Improvements Program (CIP) includes a wide range of projects. CIP can include fire and police stations, transportation and drainage projects, or swimming pools and recreation centers. CIP also includes ongoing maintenance and emergency repairs. However, there is a gap between needs and funding to accomplish capital improvements. To narrow this gap, City Council and City Administration continually seek ways to fund Colorado Springs' CIP needs.
Annual and Five-Year Capital Improvements Program (CIP)
In April 2005, the voters of the City of Colorado Springs approved a charter amendment requiring the creation of a Five-Year Capital Improvements Plan. Since that time, the City Council has adopted an annual five-year CIP plan which is comprised of the following components:
The annual CIP Budget includes funding for the City's immediate capital needs, including: financial commitments; projects, repair, and maintenance; infrastructure maintenance; local grant match funds; public safety projects; parks development and maintenance; and bicycle and trail improvements. It also includes CIP projects funded by the City's Enterprises, such as the Airport, Parking, and Pikes Peak America's Mountain.
Project sheets for each funded project in the annual CIP budget lists funding for the current year and any planned funding in the following four years. The City's unfunded projects are listed as well, and brief descriptions are provided for the high priority unfunded projects.
Previous successful capital funding efforts include:
- PPRTA - Pikes Peak Rural Transportation Authority - approved 2004
- PSST - Public Safety Sales Tax - approved 2001
- SCIP - Springs Community Improvements Program - approved 1998/1999
Citizens in Colorado Springs repeatedly ranked transportation improvement as a top priority. The City of Colorado Springs and El Paso County have joined efforts in creating a Pikes Peak Rural Transportation Authority, or PPRTA. In November 2004, voters approved a county-wide 1-cent sales and use tax increase to fund the PPRTA program. The PPRTA program is managed by the Pikes Peak Area Council of Governments, or PPACG.
Public safety is a critical government function. City Council supported and voters approved the Public Safety Sales Tax (PSST) in November 2001 to fund 20 public safety projects personnel and equipment for Colorado Springs Police and Fire Departments. Since then, this 4/10ths of a cent sales and use tax increase has funded 12 completed public safety projects, including a new police substation in Stetson Hills and three new fire stations in the northeast part of town. PSST will fund another eight projects, six of which are underway. The PSST also funds the personnel, equipment and operations needed for police and fire to improve their emergency response times.
A citizens' oversight committee reviews the PSST fund and reports to City Council to ensure public safety ballot items are accomplished according to voters' wishes.
Springs Community Improvements Program (SCIP) was a unique, citizen-led effort to identify, review, and prioritize capital improvement needs. This award-winning program engaged citizen subcommittees in determining which projects should be completed. The citizens committee presented the list of projects along with financing recommendations to City Council in 1998. City Council and voters supported SCIP in two elections - 1998 and 1999 - to fund 34 SCIP projects. These 34 projects were funded for over $100 million. All 34 of the SCIP projects are now complete.