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Trinidad City Council makes way for incoming council

TRINIDAD — The Trinidad City Council met for the last time in 2015, on Tuesday, December 22, for both a work session meeting and a special meeting, seeking to wrap up old business and clear the way for the incoming City Council in January 2016. Les Downs, out going City Attorney, made his last appearance before City Council in that capacity. Wearing a green shirt and tie that played electronic Christmas tunes, he broadcast his own brand of Christmas cheer before the meetings were called to order, sounding a light note on what at times can become a contentious affair. Picking up business during the work session, the council heard from the city’s financial director Larry Lochard, who reported on tax collections for the city up to the end of November. Marijuana taxes dropped 18 percent from October to November with the city losing about $20 thousand during the one month period. However, Trinidad has picked up around $480 thousand from the marijuana tax over the course of the year. “Marijuana revenue is about 9 percent of the General Fund budget,” Lochard said. Another $4.4 million was earned on general sales taxes for the year to October. With two months to go, the city still could bring in another $330 thousand. Lochard also noted even though property taxes were down six percent the city still

received $69,700 for the year to date. Another bright spot was automotive taxes, up 31 percent for the course of the year or $396 thousand, an increase of $98 thousand over last year. During the special meeting, the city also approved a change of ownership for Peaceful Herbs, a marijuana dispensary, to LivWell6 on a 6-0-1 vote with council member Carol Bolton abstaining. The city council, on a 6-0 vote, with council member Liz Torres absent, authorized City Manager Gabe Engeland to negotiate a purchase contract for the sale of city owned property at the Trinidad Industrial Park. The sale will involve eight lots, 16-24.