In this issue of City News, you’ll find out how to join upcoming budget forums, how to celebrate our local businesses and how to stay flood ready.

- Kelly DiMartino, Interim City Manager

2022 Recommended Budget

The 2022 City Manager’s Recommended Budget will be published and posted online in early September. It is the budget proposed by City staff, informed by community input and the 2020 Strategic Plan, that outlines which services to maintain, increase or decrease in 2022.

Through the next couple of months, City Council will review and revise the budget, before its final adoption in November.

Generally, the City creates a biennial budget every two years. Due to the economic uncertainty related to COVID-19, the City created a one-year budget for 2021 and is doing the same for 2022.

There are several upcoming opportunities to help shape the City budget:

  • Visit fcgov.com/2022budget to learn more and share your thoughts on what is and is not included in the Recommended Budget.
  • Attend an online budget forum to dive deeper into funding recommendations within specific areas:
    • Budget Forum #1: Sept. 2, 5:30-6:30 p.m.
      • Outcome Areas: Neighborhood Livability & Social Health | Environmental Health
    • Budget Forum #2: Sept. 8, 4-5 p.m.
      • Outcome Areas: Safe Community | Transportation & Mobility
    • Budget Forum #3 :Sept. 9, 5:30-6:30 p.m.
      • Outcome Areas: Economic Health | Culture & Recreation | High Performing Government
    • Plan to participate in the City Council Budget Hearings on Sept. 21 and Oct. 5.

More opportunities will be available throughout the fall. Visit ourcity.fcgov.com/2022budget for the latest.

What Should the Future of Outdoor Dining be in Fort Collins?

In 2020, the City began allowing businesses to add dining and retail space in the public right-of-way, in places like sidewalks and on-street parking spots, provided they comply with City regulations. Since that time, we’ve received interest from both the business community and the public about keeping these expanded outdoor dining and retail areas into the future.

City staff is currently studying what a future outdoor dining and retail program could look like and we would like to collect feedback from Fort Collins residents and visitors. Businesses are being surveyed separately. To take the survey, visit https://ourcity.fcgov.com/forfoco and find the survey under the “Surveys” tab.

Take the Survey

Muralists are Hitting the Streets

Be on the lookout for new murals on transformer cabinets across the city. Murals will be painted by 20 local artists on over 30 transformer cabinets in the sixteenth year of our Transformer Cabinet Mural program. Artists are currently painting, and murals are already at different stages of completion. Shown above is Chelsea Ermer.

The project started in 2006 as a collaborative effort between The City of Fort Collins Utilities Light and Power and the Art in Public Places Program to help mitigate graffiti on transformer cabinets and bring art into the community. The project has lowered maintenance costs of repainting graffitied cabinets, and it has been replicated in many cities across the state and country.

At the end of this season, there will be murals on over 378 utility cabinets!

Learn More

Water Supply Status Update
Post-wildfire watershed recovery efforts continue over the Cameron Peak Fire burn scar to stabilize hillslopes and reduce long-term erosion.

We continue to monitor our water supply for excess ash, sediment and debris and have the flexibility to rely primarily on Horsetooth Reservoir for high-quality drinking water, as needed.

As fall begins and the weather cools, you can continue to help by watering your lawn no more than two days a week to use less water and improve the resiliency of our water supplies.

Stay updated on the status of our water supplies and water restrictions at fcgov.com/water-status.

Shift Your Water

In 2020, 91% of all Fort Collins water customers turned off their outdoor irrigation by October 1, saving more than 100 million gallons of water. Let's do it again this year!

Save money on your water bill and help preserve our community's vital water supplies: Join the Shift Your Water Challenge and pledge to turn off your outdoor irrigation by October 1.

Eligible Fort Collins Utilities residential water customers who pledge and turn off their irrigation by October 1 will be entered to win $50 off their next water bill. Sign up today for your chance to be one of the 100 winners!

Sign up for the Pledge!

Kids in the Park

Kids in the Park is back at Twin Silo Park this year! On Sunday, September 26 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. kids of all ages will learn about exciting recreation opportunities, play in the park, dance to live music, enjoy snacks from local food trucks and, of course, fly kites. See you at the park!

Learn More

Vine and Lemay Overpass Construction Continues

In mid-August, Lemay Avenue north of Lincoln Avenue reopened to traffic following an extended closure that allowed crews to begin reconfiguring Lemay Avenue’s route to connect to the new Vine and Lemay Overpass. We appreciate the patience of the traveling public as work continues in the area on this long-awaited project.

In late September, Vine Drive will have full closures in place to allow the placement of girders for the new bridge. This will be an exciting and highly-visible step in the bridge construction. Drivers should plan ahead for the Vine closure, and more details will be available later in September.

For up-to-date information on the project, visit www.fcgov.com/vineandlemay.

Learn More about the Project

Share Your Ideas on Mountain Avenue Improvements

Do you have thoughts about how Mountain Avenue could be improved? We want to hear from you!

FC Moves is looking at new design ideas to improve Mountain Avenue from Howes Street to Willow Street. Specifically, FC Moves is looking at current use and circulation for pedestrians, bikes, vehicles, pick-up/drop-off, deliveries, and other new ideas like outdoor dining and green space. With input from the community, the City hopes to create a toolbox of ideas from long-term streetscaping to short-term projects that could be easily piloted.

Take a short survey at http://ourcity.fcgov.com/mountainavenue and learn more about this visioning project!

Take the Survey

Fort Collins Utilities Helps Customers Go Solar

As the City of Fort Collins navigates towards 100% renewable energy, Utilities is offering rebates to help customers make the switch to solar. Every year, hundreds of customers benefit from cash incentives after installing panels and batteries on their homes.

Right now, you can take advantage of Fort Collins Utilities rebates of up to $1,000 for solar panels and $1,500 for battery storage. To qualify, make sure to work with a participating solar contractor through the sales, design and installation stages of your project. These contractors have passed Utilities’ review and pledged to uphold high standards of business ethics.

Fort Collins Utilities can help you navigate your renewable energy path as a trusted source of unbiased information. The ‘Getting Started’ tab at this link provides an overview of the process and what you need to know before hiring a contractor.

Solar Rebates

Help Shape Our Recovery

The pandemic has brought serious challenges to our community, often worsening existing issues. As we begin to shift from response to recovery, we know we cannot return to the pre-pandemic status quo, and must focus on a recovery that benefits all.  

The City of Fort Collins is working to create a long-term Recovery Plan. As we develop the Recovery Plan, we want to hear your ideas about what a vibrant and resilient recovery looks like for our community and what priorities we should focus on as we work to build back stronger. 

Whether you have a one minute, 5 minutes or more than an hour, we want to hear from you.  

Have 1 minute? 

Have 5 minutes? 

Have more time? 

Share Your Ideas

Recycle Antifreeze, Batteries, Oil & Paint at the TRC

Did you know there is no entry fee in 2021 at the Timberline Recycling Center’s Hard-to-Recycle Materials Yard to recycle antifreeze, batteries, oil, or paint? Thanks to funding from the City’s Stormwater Utility, the Timberline Recycling Center can accept these materials from community members to keep them out of our water supply and improve indoor air quality. In 2020, more than 92 tons of these materials were collected.

Learn More

Make It Happen: Nature in the City Implementation Grants

Nature in the City helps fund projects that bring natural spaces into your neighborhood and community! Applications for 2022 funds are available beginning today, Sept 1, and will be due Oct 20. Visit the grant application portal to apply today or visit the NIC granting opportunities page for helpful information about how to apply.

You can check out past projects here and learn more about our goals in the Nature in the City Strategic plan.

Apply Today!

Knowledge is Power: Stay Informed During a Flood

Did you know our community can experience flooding from April through September?

Know How to Stay Updated

Tune into local TV or radio stations – don’t call 911 for information. The best weather information is from the National Weather Service’s website or weather radio. Fort Collins Utilities also provides emergency information on FCTV, online and through social media (details: fcgov.com/utilities).

Know the Difference

  • Watch: severe weather is possible—be alert and prepared
  • Warning: severe weather has been reported or is imminent—take immediate precautions

View Real-Time Rainfall and Streamflow

Our early flood warning system includes numerous streamflow and precipitation gauges. When rain intensity or stream level thresholds are exceeded, employees from Utilities and the City’s Office of Emergency Preparedness are notified, providing greater lead time to respond to flooding. View real-time data at fcgov.com/flood-warning-system.

Remember:

  • Turn Around, Don’t Drown®
  • Be Red Cross Ready: Get a kit. Make a plan. Be informed.
  • Sign up for emergency notifications: leta911.org.
  • Flood safety videos: fcgov.com/flood-safety.
Learn More

Upcoming Closures: Labor Day

In honor of Labor Day, all City offices will be closed Monday, Sept. 6. The Fort Collins Museum of Discovery and all library branches will also be closed. Edora Pool and Ice Center, Senior Center, and Foothills Activity Center will maintain regular hours. The Gardens on Spring Creek will also remain open. All other recreation facilities will be closed.

Essential services such as fire, police and utilities will continue as usual, but Transfort services will not be available.

City Park Pool is already closed to the public for the season.

All City offices and facilities will resume regular hours on Tuesday, Sept. 7. 

Stay Connected to Your City

As a City News subscriber you receive monthly updates on what's happening in Fort Collins, but did you know there are numerous other ways to stay connected day-to-day with City projects, programs and services? 

Share feedback on major projects at OurCity

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Communications & Public Involvement Office
215 N Mason St
Fort Collins, CO 80524