Colorado Springs News, Sports & Business

Gazette Premium Content Falcon incorporation target shrinks

By JANE REUTER THE GAZETTE Updated: August 4, 2005 at 12:00 am
FALCON - A new Falcon committee proposes creating a far smaller city than the one envisioned by incorporation supporters weeks ago. The new map outlines an approximate 5-squaremile area that includes Falcon’s stores but not heavily populated neighborhoods such as Woodmen Hills and Meridian Ranch.
That’s about a quarter the size of the 20-square-mile area included in the previous map, committee spokesman Tom Cline said. The smaller area is home to about 3,000 people. The original boundaries included as many as 15,000. The Falcon Incorporation Committee aims to put the incorporation idea on the April ballot. The area was reduced, in part, because it’s easier to educate a small group of people about the benefits of incorporation, Cline said. An important advantage, he said, is keeping sales tax revenue in Falcon instead of Colorado Springs. “We need to protect the commercial area from being annexed into the city,” Cline said. “I believe they have intentions of picking up the commercial zone of Falcon so they can get the 7.4 percent sales tax. “Without that core, Falcon could not exist.” Cline doesn’t think Colorado Springs wants to annex the other areas of Falcon. “The residential is a liability,” he said. Colorado Springs City Councilwoman Margaret Radford, like other city officials, denies the city’s interest in annexing any part of Falcon. Annexations happen at the request of the developer or landowner, she said, not involuntarily. “There are a heck of a lot of reasons to look at incorporation,” Radford said. “Being afraid that Colorado Springs is going to come and involuntarily annex Falcon is probably not the best one. The best reason has to do with local control.” Falcon is not included on the city’s annexation plan, city planner David Litzelman said. Public meetings about the new incorporation proposal are planned, Cline said, but have not been set. The proposed boundaries could be expanded, he said, if neighboring residents want to be included. Although many members of the original Falcon Exploratory Incorporation Committee are part of the new group, former chairman Art Van Sant is not. Cline said Van Sant, a Colorado Springs resident who owns land in Falcon, chose to withdraw. Van Sant did not return calls for comment.
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