Forest Lakes FAQs
What does Forest Lakes Metropolitan District do?
Forest Lakes Metropolitan District (“FLMD”) is the operating District for the three Pinon Pines Metropolitan Districts (referred to as “PPMD #1”, “PPMD #2” and “PPMD #3”, collectively the “Pinon Districts”). We provide water, sewer and landscaping services for the Pinon Districts. We maintain Waterfront Park and the trails within the Forest Lakes area. We also maintain the stormwater discharge facilities within the Pinon Districts. FLMD has contracted with Donala Water and Sanitation District to operate the water and sewer systems. We have contracted with other providers for maintenance of the other infrastructure – for example, taking care of the Waterfront Park.
What are the rates for the various services?
The rates, fees and charges schedule for FLMD are included on the website (ForestLakesMetroDistrict.com) under the Utilities tab.
What does the mill levy for the Pinon Districts pay for?
PPMD #1 certifies mill levies for both Operations & Maintenance (“O&M”) and for Debt Service. Currently (in 2016) the total mill levy for both functions is 44.097 mills. The O&M mill levy helps to cover a portion of the administrative and legal expenses incurred by FLMD to operate the various systems within the Forest Lakes development. The debt service mill levy helps to cover some of the repayment obligations incurred by both PPMD #1 and FLMD for past development activities with respect to the utility, parks, trail, storm water and road infrastructure.
Why are the mill levies expected to increase for 2017?
As homes are completed and residents move into Forest Lakes, we are better able to estimate the costs of operating the various facilities and the associated administrative and legal costs. The PPMD #1 Board is expected to certify the following mill levies for 2017: 10 mills for Operations and Maintenance (O&M) and 40 mills for debt service, providing for a total of 50 mills (in District). This does not include the out of district mills such as fees associated with bridge, roads, school, fire district, etc. The 10 mill O&M levy will help support a portion of the operating and maintenance costs for the non-utility systems. The 40 mills for debt service will support the debt service on a PPMD #1 bond issue that was completed on October 6, 2016.
Where do the Lakes get their water?
The water in both Bristlecone and Pinon Reservoirs comes from the Beaver Creek watershed, which runs through the Forest Lakes area from its origin on the Rampart Range.
Why does the Lake level fluctuate?
At this time, since we are not using water from Bristlecone Reservoir for drinking water purposes, fluctuations in the level of the lake are due solely to changes in the amount of flow in Beaver Creek, potential drought from year to year, precipitation and evaporation rates from the lake. Once the surface water treatment plant is constructed and in operation, we will actually be withdrawing lake water for treatment and for drinking water purposes – and that activity will cause modest declines in the lake level.
How safe is the Dam?
Both the Bristlecone and Pinon Dams were constructed in 1986 and are continually monitored by our District Engineer and Caretaker and are subject to rigorous inspections by the State Dam Inspector every three years. The State Dam Inspector provides detailed directions on the specific maintenance activities to be accomplished and our District Engineer oversees the resulting work.
What is the depth and size of the Lakes?
Bristlecone Reservoir is about 65 surface acres and has varying depths with a 55 foot depth at its deepest part. Pinon Reservoir is about 14 surface acres and is generally about 20 feet deep at it deepest point.
What is a Water Surface Treatment Plant?
Not to be confused with a wastewater sewage treatment plant – The water surface treatment plant will purify water taken from the lake and be used for drinking water for the Forest Lakes Development. The plant will be constructed within the next 2 years.
Do the lakes ever dry up?
While both Bristlecone and Pinon Reservoirs do shrink during dry periods, we have never seen the level in Bristlecone Reservoir fall more than 10 feet or so. Because Pinon is so much smaller – and fed by releases from Bristlecone Reservoir – in very dry periods it has virtually dried up. The Water Shortage Provisions that are included in FLMD Utility Rules and Regulations are designed to prevent significant declines in the level of Bristlecone Reservoir as this is the primary drinking water source for Forest Lakes once the surface water treatment plant is completed.
Why can’t we swim in the Lakes?
Because the water in Bristlecone Reservoir will be used as a drinking water supply for the Forest Lakes development – once the surface water treatment plant is constructed. We have been advised by our engineers that it is prudent to avoid having human contact with the water. From a water quality perspective therefore, we have determined that it is best to prohibit any activities that result in human contact with the water in the Reservoir, such as swimming. Pinon Reservoir will not be used as a source of our drinking water supply and is a non-recreational lake.
How is Pinon Lake fed?
Pinon reservoir is fed almost exclusively from Bristlecone Reservoir. When Bristlecone is full and spilling, the spill water can be directed by pipe into Pinon Reservoir. When Bristlecone is relatively full but not spilling, lake water can be delivered by pipe to Pinon Reservoir. If the lake level of Bristlecone drops significantly, pumping would be required to get lake water into the pipeline to Pinon Reservoir. Thus, typically during low flow, low lake level periods, the level of water in Pinon Reservoir materially declines.
Can we have water activities on Pinon?
This lake is a non-active lake which means NO recreational activities of any kind (humans or pets), such as, but not limited to, fishing, swimming, wading boating or access of any kind. Bristlecone is the only recreational lake.
How is the water quality?
Currently, the water quality from both our Dillon Well and for Bristlecone Reservoir is tested quarterly. The water in both sources meets all water quality standards of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. We also routinely test the “treated water” quality after the water has been through our well-head treatment plant. Again, that water quality meets all State requirements.
How often is it checked for quality?
As noted above, raw water from both the Dillon Well and Bristlecone Reservoir are currently being tested quarterly. Treated water from our well-head treatment plant is tested monthly. We are currently preparing the necessary documents to be classified as a “community” water system. Once that classification occurs, we will follow all testing and reporting timeframes as dictated by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (“CDPHE”).
Where can I check to see how safe the drinking water is?
The State requires that “community” water systems file Consumer Confidence Reports with the State and transmit that report to its consumers annually. We currently expect that the first FLMD Consumer Confidence Report will be distributed about June of 2017. If you have any specific concerns about the quality of your drinking water, you may contact our system operator, Donala Water & Sanitation District, at any time.
What does Donala do?
Donala Water & Sanitation District is under contract with FLMD to run both the water and wastewater systems that serve the Forest Lakes development. Donala has years of experience operating its water and wastewater systems, which serve the Gleneagle area. Its operators are licensed operators fully qualified and certified by the State. Donala also provides all meter reading and billing services for FLMD and all its customers within the Forest Lakes area.
What is the relationship between FLMD and the Forest Lakes Residential Owners Association (HOA)?
Basically, the two have very different functions. Forest Lakes Metro District (FLMD), as explained in the questions above, operates the water, wastewater and landscaping functions for the Forest Lakes development. While FLMD owns and maintains the parks, lakes and trails within the Forest Lakes development, it has hired the HOA to manage the reservation and permit activities with respect to the park and lakes. The HOA mainly serves to fulfill the purposes of the Homeowners Association as they are specified in the Association’s Declaration of Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions, as well as other governing documents (Design Guidelines). Those purposes include covenant control, architectural control and general administrative responsibilities. The HOA web page can be located at ForestLakesColorado.com.