Pam North – Nederland
The Nederland Board of Trustees (BOT) met on Tues. evening, Oct. 15, 2013. Mayor Joe Gierlach, Mayor pro tem Kevin Mueller, and Trustees Peter Fiori, Randy Lee, Annette Croughwell, Ledge Long, and Chris Perret were present. Also in attendance were Town Administrator Alisha Reis, Town Treasurer Eva Forberger, and Town Clerk Michele Martin.
The meeting schedule for the remainder of 2013 was approved. Regular BOT meetings are scheduled for Nov. 5 and 19, Dec. 3 and 17.
Resolution 2013-10, regarding policy of the Board of Trustees taking positions of advocacy on statewide issues was approved. The Board has wished from time to time to express its collective opinion related to certain ballot measures. In order for the Board to consider taking a position on a ballot measure, they must do so by motion, second and approval of a super-majority (five or more members) of the Trustees. Any position taken by the Board regarding any ballot measure must be done as an action of the entire Board, not of any single member. The Board has in past years adopted resolutions of opinion related to ballot issues, such as: Resolution 2012-10 Support for the DDA in the April 2012 municipal election; Resolution 2010-19 Opposition to State Proposition 101, Amendments 60, 61 (reduction of various taxes); and Resolution 1992-37 Opposition to Amendment 1 (TABOR).
Town Treasurer Eve Forberger submitted the 2014 Budget Draft for public hearing. She also reported that she had been busy with budget preparation for the Town and the Nederland Downtown Development Authority (NDDA), as well as flood assessment for streets, utility plants, and the Community Center. CIRSA will cover damages to town facilities (i.e. Community Center/Wastewater plant) at 100% of repair/replacement, with a $500 deductible. FEMA will cover damages to infrastructure (i.e. culverts, roads, sewer lines). However, FEMA’s current payout rate is 75% and the state has committed to pick up 50% of the remaining 25%,which means the Town currently will need to cover 12.5% of its infrastructure damages. Forberger is in the process of accessing estimated damages. She also had contacted Xcel to proceed with the undergrounding of power for the wastewater plant, per the Board of Trustee’s directive, and has been helping the Backdoor Theater coordinate the installation of its new digital equipment at the Community Center.
Staff reports included several news items. Three new employees have been hired (municipal judge, utility billing clerk, and a utilities assistant trainee) by the Town. The water plant functioned smoothly during the recent flooding; three times the usual amount of water was handled without any problems (800,000 gallons of water daily as opposed to the normal 250,000 gallons per day). The new judge will be introduced to the Board members at the Nov. 4 BOT meeting. Dawn Baumhover, Community Center Coordinator, had submitted a report which said that the Community Center had been activated as an emergency shelter which had provided accommodation for 14-15 people during the flooding, and that the Community Center is undergoing renovation and repair for the damage it sustained during the flooding.
Mayor Joe Gierlach mentioned his report that highlighted 5 reasons why the EcoPass program is important to the community, and that it could be viewed on his blog and would be printed in that week’s Mountain-Ear.
Town Administrator Alisha Reis touched briefly on the 3012-2014 Goals Objective update.
The Board approved Sopa Harmann to the Sustainability Advisory Board (SAB), for a term expiring June 1, 2015. Harmann was on hand to speak briefly about her qualifications, and to answer questions from the Board members.
During the Public Comment on Non-Agenda Items segment, David Stites requested a physical review of how the NedPed project affects his residential property.
Matt Robbins, Community Relations Specialist for the Colorado Lottery, presented the Colorado Lottery Starburst Award to the Town of Nederland for its Parks, Recreation, and Open Space Trails Program. For the past 30 years the Colorado Lottery has been providing funds for parks, recreation, open space, conservation, education, and wildlife projects. The Starburst Award recognizes excellence in the use of Lottery funds for community and conservation projects. Starburst nominations are reviewed, and winning projects are chosen based on the creativity of the project, economic and social impact to the community, and whether the project achieved its goal. The Chipeta Park Enhancement Project was funded with a $52,000 grant from Great Outdoors Colorado.
Ordinance 722, amending Nederland Municipal Code Sec. 16-32 (c) Use Group Table to include club uses, was considered, in response to direction by the Planning Commission at its June 26 meeting and review of an application for zoning designation related to a social club/cannabis café proposal. The Planning Commission had considered several issues related to club uses, such as the intent of the club use definition, type of use anticipated, and if the current definition supports a cannabis club-type use. The Colorado Indoor Air Act also would come into consideration for such a use. After the initial review of the subject, the Colorado Department of Revenue had issued rules prohibiting on-site consumption of marijuana or the sale of marijuana in establishments that also sell liquor (bars) and/or food (cafés, restaurants).
Club uses initially were included in Nederland’s zoning code in Ordinance 209 (1981). The definition common to many communities around Colorado was adopted at that time: any membership organization, including a lodge catering exclusively to members and their guests, and whose facilities are limited to meeting, eating and recreational uses, and whose activities are not conducted principally for monetary gain. Although defined in that ordinance, the club use never was translated to the Use Chart,
which documents which zoning districts within uses are permitted to operate. The Planning Commission voted to support the proposed Use Chart inclusion of club uses in the draft ordinance, and in that ordinance, Town staff had offered a preliminary assignment of zoning allowances for consideration, based upon existing allowances for similar business types, including use by right in the Central Business District and General Commercial zones, use by Special Review in the Neighborhood Commercial zone, and prohibited in Residential, Forestry and Public zones.
At its meeting of Oct. 1, 2013, the Board had directed that staff amend the introduced ordinance to include two definitions of clubs, and to include them in two line items in the zoning Use Chart. This was meant to differentiate between non-profit, fraternal-type organizations and for-profit, commercial-type establishments.
Club uses had been defined within the Zoning Code as: “…any membership organization, including a lodge catering exclusively to members and their guests, and whose facilities are limited to meeting, eating and recreational uses, and whose activities are not conducted principally for monetary gain.” The Board approved the ordinance 4 to 3, with Long, Croughwell, and Lee voting against.
Ordinance 723, to sell property identified as Lot 1, Caribou Ridge Replat A, First Amendment, located on CR126, and owned by the Town of Nederland, was approved. In order to proceed with the transaction, passing of this ordinance was required to sell public land. The sale of the land will increase the Town’s liquid reserves by $90,000, minus broker’s fees of 5%. The Board approved the ordinance to sell the 1-acre residential lot.
Consideration of Resolution 2013-11 in support of Amendment 66 (education state income tax measure) was discussed. An initiative on the November 2013 ballot, Amendment 66 is intended to reduce class sizes, provide more one-on-one attention for all students, and ensure that new money is used only for education reforms or enhancements to existing programs. Voters will be asked to approve an income tax increase to raise money for P-12 education, while keeping Colorado’s tax burden among the lowest in the country. Amendment 66 is expected to raise $950 million for schools, and cost the average Colorado approximately $133 per year. The revenue would hire thousands of new teachers to reduce class size, The Board approved the resolution to support Amendment 66 with a vote of 6 to 1, with Mueller voting against.
A resolution to name the gateway park area (west of Barker Reservoir) was discussed. Parks, Recreation, and Open Space (PROSAB) had conducted a public poll regarding preference for the name of the future park near Barker Reservoir.
Suggestions were submitted by the public in an earlier phase of the process; PROSAB members then selected ten of the best of these for a vote by interested community members. The top three community choices, as determined by this poll, were Barker Meadow Park, Tungsten Park, and Shoreline Park, with Barker Meadow Park selected as the overwhelming favorite. The Board of Trustees approved that name for the park.
The meeting adjourned at 9:56 p.m.
The next regular meeting of the Nederland Board of Trustees will be on Tues. Nov, 5, 2013, at 7:00 p.m. at the Community Center.