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El Paso County Colorado District 49

Builders commit 10 more years to D 49

In January 2015, the 10-year mutual donor agreement between home builders in the Falcon community and nearby areas and the Falcon Community Builders for Classrooms expired. Sarah Jack, FCBC contractor administrative assistant, said the FCBC reintroduced a new mutual donor agreement, asking the builders to sign on for another 10-year commitment; about 95 percent of them agreed.ìThe mutual donor agreement is between the builders and the nonprofit Falcon Community Builders for Classrooms,î Jack said. ìThe builders would agree to pay a $1,500 voluntary impact fee for every single-family home they built. They already pay school fees and other fees in lieu of taxes that are required by statute. This is completely voluntary and completely separate from those fees.îDoug Stimple, chief executive officer with Classic Homes, came up with the idea for the 501 (c) 3 organization after noticing D 49 was struggling with overcrowding, Jack said. ìHe thought of going to the major builders and developers that were building in the district, explaining to them the need to assist the district in some way,î she said.The voluntary fee is determined using a sliding scale; single-family homes are assigned a $1,500 fee, while multi-family homes are assigned a lower fee, Jack said.In an email to The New Falcon Herald, Stimple wrote, ìFalcon Community Builders for Classrooms has raised and spent, on behalf of the District, over $5 million for capital infrastructure in the first 10 years of this absolutely voluntary fee, which is being paid by the builders to assist the District in delivering a quality education for their students. No other district in the state of Colorado benefits from this kind of an organization or voluntary fee.îJack said the FCBC has already committed to spending more than $600,000 on capital needs this year alone.The money raised by the FCBC funded the construction of the two-story second wing of Vista Ridge High School and the installation of the artificial turf at Falcon High School, among other things, Jack said.The voluntary fee will not cover all capital need problems that face D 49, despite new construction, Jack said. The market demands affordable homes, and builders in the district want to provide them, she said. However, if the builders are on their own to voluntarily provide money to the district from each new home construction, it becomes difficult to keep the cost of the homes down, and that cost gets passed on to the buyer, Jack said.ìAt some point, it is incumbent upon the patrons of the district to pass a bond issue so that these critical capital needs can be addressed,î Stimple wrote. ìIt really is unfair to put the responsibility on the backs of the new home buyers alone.îThe FCBC meets regularly and welcomes ideas for capital improvements within the district, Jack said. Anyone interested in the process should contact the school board or the district accountability advisory committee, she said.

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