Letter to the Editor: Breckenridge Town Council is hypocritical when it comes to workforce housing

Nathaniel and Roxane Collins

We have been homeowners in Breckenridge for a decade. We recently purchased a lot in the historic district and received approval for new home plans, with a deadline to begin construction by next summer. We rent the existing house to four members of the community.

Since we won’t move for three more years, we approached the town to ask for a two-year extension on our development deadline so that we could continue to provide housing to our renters. After multiple failures to get any response from town government, we hired a local consultant to secure a working session, for which the town charged us $570, where our proposal would be considered by the town council. Despite an endorsement by the community development department, the Breckenridge Town Council dismissed our proposal in less than a minute with no discussion or debate.

The cursory reasons that were given were completely unrelated to the facts at hand. Our request was grossly mischaracterized, and we were afforded no opportunity to speak despite the fee we paid for this “session.”

In the end, our house will be built according to our approved plans. But, now, instead of providing two additional years of affordable workforce housing to four local residents, their house will be demolished and the new house will sit largely unused. This is tragic. We are being forced to evict tenants to adhere to a meaningless timeline that will ultimately not change anything.

Despite its public messages to the contrary, Town Council is clearly not interested in affordable public housing. When presented with an opportunity to keep four public housing units with no cost to the town, they turned their noses up. This is, at best, mindless, unthinking bureaucracy or, at worst, greedy interest only in maximizing property tax revenue.

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