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Keep CSP office here

THE GENERAL Assembly quickly must find funding to keep the regional office of the Colorado State Patrol in Pueblo.

The area’s demands on state law enforcement are rapidly outgrowing what can be handled at Pueblo’s current regional CSP office on North Erie Avenue, so a larger facility here is a forgone conclusion.

“If we cannot secure the CSP here, where will it go?” asks state Sen. Leroy Garcia, D-Pueblo, who sponsored SB109 along with Sens. John Cook, R-Weld County, and Nancy Todd, D-Aurora. State Rep. Daneya Esgar, DPueblo, sponsored the legislation in House.

The bill will combine the CSP regional office with a new Colorado Department of Transportation headquarters already planned to be built in the city. The proposed concept is modeled after an existing CSP-CDOT combined facility in Greeley.

“This makes sense to taxpayers,” Garcia said. “What happened in Greeley is best practices for the state.”

And we concur.

Currently, CDOT is about to acquire a Pueblo-area property on which to build its facility, Garcia said, adding that CDOT is a large operation with much more resources and therefore more economic flexibility than the CSP.

“In Greeley, CDOT put up the money for the patrol office, and the CSP will pay CDOT over a number of years,” Garcia said. “CDOT has a much bigger budget, and that’s the kind of setup we’re looking at.”

And to us this makes sense because the roads CDOT builds and maintains are kept safe by the state patrol.

The SB109 passed the Joint Capital Development Committee on Feb. 11 and passed unanimously in the Senate Transportation Committee on Feb. 16. It now languishes in the Senate Appropriations Committee of which Garcia is a member. It will remain there until revenue sources can be worked out.

Again, we urge the Legislature to fast-track funding for Pueblo’s regional CSP office.

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