City applies for state GOCO recreation grant

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The Craig Parks and Recreation Department has applied for a $29,000 Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO) building and planning capacity grant to update its 16-year-old master plan.

The master plan would evaluate recreational opportunities in Craig and the surrounding area and plan for recreational improvements through the next 10 to 15 years. It will take recreational facilities, parks, open space and trails into consideration, and plan for each.

The Craig City Council and the Moffat County Board of Commissioners have partnered in providing funding for the grant match.

"It will be a comprehensive plan for both entities," city Parks and Recreation Department Director Dave Pike said. "We need to work together and collaborate."

The collaboration will help eliminate concerns from the Department of Local Affairs (DOLA) about duplication of services. When meeting with interested residents in May, DOLA Regional Manager Tim Sarmo said consolidation of city and county efforts was needed.

The city has pledged $9,000 and the county $6,000 for a project total of $44,000. Pike isn't sure $44,000 is an accurate figure for the plan he anticipates. He called other communities to get project cost estimates and said the figures ranged from $15,000 to $75,000 depending on the size of the community and scope of work.

"It's a lot of guesswork," he said. "If we have to throw in more money, I'll have to go to the Council and request that."

Pike attempted to make the bid as competitive as possible, while still getting the funding needed.

"I didn't want to get greedy," he said.

Pike believes the chances of getting the grant are good.

"I'm pretty optimistic we wrote a good grant," he said.

Grants will be awarded in February and Pike said he expects to have a finished product about a year from now.

Pike plans to solicit requests for proposal (RFPs) before the grant is awarded because there is such a need for a parks and recreation master plan. The last master plan was completed in 1983 and is now obsolete, he said, but still has information that can be used to complete a new master plan.

"It won't be like we're starting from scratch," he said. "There's a lot of useful information we can use from that."

Part of the RFP will be a request to investigate the need, support and possible site for a recreation center.

After the plan is complete, the Parks and Recreation Department will be able to prioritize goals and then implement them "as long as the funds last," Pike said.

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