This month, Arapahoe County Open Spaces distributed $15.7 million in Shareback funds to 12 incorporated cities and towns to support local parks, trails and open space projects. Even though the County runs this program every year, funding is even more critical in 2020 to the communities that rely on sales tax revenue to fund many recreation projects.
One-half of the annual Open Space Sales and Use Tax revenue is distributed directly back to participating cities and towns across the County through the annual Shareback program. The funds are allocated according to population, and they contribute to the quality of life and overall health of County residents via trail, playground and park improvement projects. The 2019 open space Shareback funds distributed to each community are listed below.
“We know many cities have seen a reduction in sales tax revenue this year because of the business shutdowns,” said Arapahoe County Open Spaces director Shannon Carter. “We hope these Shareback funds will enable our partners to keep critical projects moving forward, especially now, when more people are taking advantage of the great outdoors and are mostly doing so in or near their home communities.”
Arapahoe County owns and manages 13 properties across the County, from Dove Valley Regional Park in Centennial to Richmil Ranch Open Space on Colorado’s Eastern Plains, and many parks and trailheads in between. In 2003 and again in 2011, voters approved a countywide quarter-cent sales and use tax to support these natural resources. This means that for every $100 spent in Arapahoe County, 25 cents is invested directly in the outdoors – the places our residents cherish. The tax will be up for renewal in 2023.
Since its inception, the Arapahoe County Open Spaces Program has built or improved more than 73 miles of new trails, supported more than 160 park and trailhead projects, and conserved more than 31,000 acres of open space. The public is encouraged to learn more about Arapahoe County Open Spaces and join the conversation about the future of the County’s open spaces through a yearlong master planning process. Visit arapahoegov.com/osmasterplan to sign up for updates and read more about how to get involved.
2019 Open Space Sales Tax Shareback Funds Distribution, based on tax revenues received May 16, 2019-May 15, 2020: