Glimmers of Hope in Long Battle
Pueblo County, Colorado, has a beef with its neighbor to the north, Colorado Springs. Five years ago, Pueblo County allowed Colorado Springs and El Paso County to build a section of the Southern Delivery System, a project to provide Colorado Springs with water from the Arkansas River. Immediately thereafter, Colorado Springs caved to public pressure and ended the fee that paid for funding stormwater projects, causing problems downstream.
“Water is tearing up our county,” says Pueblo County Commissioner Terry Hart. “Erosion, debris, sediment and flooding are all affecting Fountain Creek from the north. We’ll have to close Overton Road in the north part of the county because the creek keeps moving.” Pueblo County commissioners recently approved an agreement with an engineering firm to better understand how a list of proposed projects would affect the county.
Hart is encouraged by recent statements from Colorado Springs’ Mayor John Suthers, who plans to meet with Pueblo County leaders before the end of June. Suthers says that Colorado Springs and El Paso County have spent millions on stormwater projects. “I do believe it’s very much in our interest to meet with Pueblo, hear their concerns and do what we can to alleviate their concerns.”