Voters in the Mancos Conservation District approved a half-mill tax in Tuesday’s special district election.
Conservation District manager Gretchen Rank said 315 voted in favor of the tax and 199 voted against it, according to unofficial results.
“It means we can continue to keep the lights on at the office and can continue to provide programming and services to landowners in the Mancos Valley,” she said.
Also in the election, three board members who ran unopposed were re-elected for four year terms. Ben Wolcott received 353 votes; Michael Nolan, 322 votes; and Robert Becker, 318 votes.
The newly approved tax will raise about $18,000 per year and help pay for a director and operating costs. The 0.5 mills add about $7.20 per year to the taxes on a residential property worth $200,000.
Rank said that in the short term, the money would go toward repairing the Conservation District headquarters in Mancos. The funding will also provide leverage for federal and state grants sought by the conservation district.
The Mancos Conservation District oversees a wide variety of water and soil conservation programs in Montezuma County, including the Montezuma School to Farm Project.
Ballots were mailed out to property owners throughout the Conservation District, which borders the Mancos River from the New Mexico border to just northeast of the town of Mancos.
This is the first time the Mancos Conservation District has sought a mill levy, and state law will not allow it to seek an increase in the future.