- Associated Press - Sunday, January 24, 2016

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) - Officials in Steamboat Springs are struggling to find money to make sure the historic Howelsen Hill ski area remains open, along with its iconic ski jumping complex and training ground for winter athletes.

City officials are concerned about costly repair bills, caused by small landslides.

The city is also reconsidering its operating agreement with the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club, and improving the ski area.

Council members say the hill is a valuable marketing tool and a boon to its reputation.

Recommendations have included a lift ticket tax, or creation of a parks and recreation district could levy taxes, Steamboat Today reported (https://tinyurl.com/gog8dnh).

Other suggestions included the creation of a hut system on Howelsen and Emerald Mountain to raise money.

Penny Fletcher, the mother of a pair of Steamboat Olympians who grew up skiing on Howelsen, wants a better strategy to promote Howelsen.

She said services cut during the recession need to be restored.

“We need to gather that back,” she said.

She said not everyone who visits the community can afford to purchase the higher-cost lift tickets at Steamboat Ski Area.

“We need to improve Howelsen. It is just the most incredible place,” she said.

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Information from: Steamboat Pilot & Today, https://steamboatpilot.com/

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