01/26/15 SCIP Bonds

In 1998, the voters of Colorado Springs approved the sale of $88 million of bonds called SCIP (Springs Community Improvement Program). Over 7 years, 29 projects were completed as promised and in 2016 these bonds will be retired as the obligation to pay back the bond holders will have been satisfied. The Mayor has proposed issuing new bonds to pay for new capital projects, but keeping the tax obligation the same as it has been during the payment timeframe over the past 17 years, so therefore no “new” taxes, but a continuation of the original SCIP taxes for another 20 years. Due to the low interest rate environment, the City could issue new bonds for about $160 million with the net proceeds from the issuance being about $145 million. The Mayor has proposed the use of these funds to be spent over the next 5 years for 70 capital improvement projects as follows (please see the links below for a complete list of the proposed projects):
  • Neighborhood Streets $75M
  • Stormwater $40M
  • Public Safety $20M
  • Parks $10M

The Mayor would like City Council to place this SCIP proposal on the April 2015 ballot to allow the City’s voters to decide if they would allow these new bonds to be issued. There may not be enough votes on Council to place this on the ballot, but Colorado Springs Forward (CSF) will attend the Council meeting on January 27th and voice our support for the SCIP proposal. CSF thinks that we cannot afford to wait any longer to fix our roads and repair the thousands of potholes that are only growing larger every day. The City must begin the repair of our infrastructure now, and this SCIP proposal will provide money sooner than any other means to begin that process. The City thinks that if SCIP were to be approved by the voters, that there could be a way to “wrap” the existing bonds with the new bonds to be able to generate funds as early as this summer to begin the repairs. CSF also realizes that the amount designated for stormwater is less than 5% of what is really needed to fix the regions’ stormwater problem, but at least some projects would get started while a new plan to address the stormwater problem is being strategized by the community. CSF supports the SCIP proposal and encourages City Council to place it on the April ballot to allow the voters of Colorado Springs to decide this issue.

5 Year Summary of Project Spending

Financing Plan – Summary of proposal

Resolution Referring Rev Bonds to April 2015 Ballot