Though the economy is a concern, and survey respondents were polled on that as well, the hospital district is prompted to seek voter authorization to borrow money this fall instead of waiting because of something else that’s on the ballot. One of three proposed state constitutional amendments — Amendment 61 — would affect the district’s future ability to take on debt if it passes, according to Casey The hospital is considering a 20-year repayment of the general obligation bonds, but Amendment 61 would require repayment within 10 years. That means a lower interest rate, but significantly higher debt payments, he said.Amendment 61 would double the impact of paying off the debt for taxpayers, Casey said.

ASPEN REAL ESTATE — The Aspen Valley Hospital District will ask voters in November to authorize borrowing $50 million to help fund a planned $73 million expansion and renovation project.The district’s board of directors voted 4-0 on Friday to put the ballot question before voters on Nov. 2, along with a second measure proposing the “deBrucing” of the district — in essence, exempting it from state revenue limitations. Board chairman John Sarpa was called out of town and did not attend the special meeting.The board agreed to ask voters for permission to issue general obligation bonds for the expansion after a survey of district voters indicated the request would win approval, though the polling did not indicate overwhelming support.
By Janet Urquhart, August 21, 2010 Aspen Times

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