For the week of December 16 thru December 22, 1998  

North Valley Trails opening best in 20 years

Bond payoff on schedule, board says


By KEVIN WISER
Express Staff Writer

The Blaine County Recreation District Board of Directors met with the Galena Advisory Committee last week to count the past and hope for the future.

The board heard tallies from the past fiscal year and tidings of success for 1999 due to the best snow season start in 20 years.

An audit report showed an even trend for revenue and expenditures in 1998.

The general allocation bond passed by the public in 1988 to fund the Wood River Valley Trail System is on schedule to be paid off in 1999, according to the report. Recreation District director Mary Austin Crofts said paying off the bond opens up potential for new recreation projects, such as a community recreation center planned for Hailey.

As for the upcoming winter season, Crofts reported that ski pass sales for the Galena and the North Valley Trails System are up 20 percent compared to this time last year.

Tom Downey, Galena Lodge concessionaire, said Galena Lodge is up and running, skiing conditions are great, and the trails system is set up for a great year.

The rec board then discussed a request to change a driveway access, which would effect the Wood River Trail System.

Chairman Bob Rosso questioned whether the request would benefit the public and the trail system—or simply act to satisfy the needs and demands of the property owners involved.

Rosso also wondered out loud whether the proposal might be preceding plans for a future subdivision, and said the concern of the recreation district should be with the integrity of the trail rather than driveway easements for future subdivisions.

"If we keep giving things up to developers and property owners, we’ll end up giving the whole valley away," Rosso concluded.

The meeting ended with a party and cake for departing board members Bob Rosso and Will Van Ert. Van Ert praised his counterparts as a dedicated bunch whose efforts during the last four years have made recreation in the Wood River Valley the success that it is today.

 

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