Nederland receives clean audit

John Scarffe, Nederland.  The Nederland Board of Trustees received a clean audit and heard presentations on Eldora parking and from the Peak to Peak Housing and Human Services Task Force during a regular meeting at 7 p.m., August 15, 2017, at the Nederland Community Center. Town Treasurer Jennifer Hogan announced that the Town has completed and filed its 2016 audit.

 

John Cutler with Cutler & Associates, which conducted the audit, said he has great news this year. “This year we improved.

 

Jen did a great job. We made it to another level,” Cutler said. The Town received an unmodified, clean opinion.

 

Cutler said he sees really good things for next year. The General Fund did spend down some money, but that was planned for capital projects. The Town can’t spend down the general fund $60,000, and the Nederland Downtown Development Authority budget was over.

 

Mayor Pro-Tem Charles Wood acknowledged Hogan’s achievement. The Town had four different accountants before she took over, he said.

 

Brent Tregaskis, general manager for Eldora Mountain Resort, presented a proposal for Eldora Mountain Resort to utilize Guercio Field for overflow parking on peak use days. Eldora will pay the Town $500 per day with 41 days in the season for a total of $20,500 for one year and $41,000 for two years.

 

Tregaskis told the Board that Eldora’s business is growing well, and that’s the challenge because they don’t’ have enough parking. He is working with Boulder County for a significant onsite parking lot, but it’s a nine-month to one year-long process to change their special use permit, to 1,000 cars.

 

He presented a two-year proposal with one-year renewals that would focus the effort on employee parking. Eldora has been leasing space from Boulder Valley School District for the high school parking lot, and it has been a great staging area for employee parking.

 

Eldora would like to move employees to the town of Nederland and park more guests in the high school lot, Tregaskis said.

 

He was thinking about 120 cars, which would be easier than picking up employees from multiple little lots.

 

“We want to be a good partner and figure out parking and related problems we cause. We will do more car-pooling and incentives for employees. This would help us for a short period of time,” Tregaskis said.

 

Mayor Larsen said the goal of this discussion was to introduce the idea to the Board, so the Trustees can put it on the agenda as an action item for a future meeting. Trustee Alan Apt asked how Eldora will prevent a grass and snow mess. “We don’t have the resources to groom it.”

 

Tregaskis said Eldora’s goal would be to put it back to what it was. Once March hit they would probably pull out of there.

 

“We know what to do and what not to do. The ultimate answer is more parking. This is just a stop gap.”

 

Trustee Dallas Masters said he is 50/50 on this. He wants to partner with Eldora and needs money to match grant funds, but to do it with parking on the ballfield? People in Nederland are going to see a muddy mess.

 

Trustee Topher Donahue said the field has deteriorated. It needs help. Eldora could reseed it and make it better than they left it. “There will be some outcry against it. If we can make it better, that would really help.”

 

A solution for the Hesse Trailhead problem would be to run the trailhead from Eldora, Donahue said. It might be more appealing if that was part of the big picture plan.

 

Tregaskis said: “We could probably make it look better and work that into the contract. I’m the one who is going to have egg on my face if it doesn’t look good.”

 

Eldora and the U.S. Forest Service are having that conversation about using the Eldora Mountain Resort parking lot in the summer, and all those groups have come together and have agreed in concept, Tregaskis said. “No environmental work has been done, but that’s where we’re going and the kind of thing we want to do for the community.”

 

Larsen said this would need to go through the Nederland Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces Advisory Board for more of a plan regarding outreach and repairs.

 

Rebecca Lawrence, consultant for the Peak to Peak Housing and Human Services Task Force, presented an update to the Board. The task force has a grant for her position, a part-time, one-year contracted position.

 

Lawrence said she just got hired as the consultant. Lawrence has been a mountain victim advocate for the Sheriff’s Department for 16 years and is the founder of the Inter Mountain Alliance. She also was the community advocate for Jamestown during recovery from the 2013 flood.

 

Lawrence plans to spend the next year assessing needs in the Peak to Peak Corridor, including the towns of Ward, Jamestown and Allenspark. She will conduct focus groups on housing, food and socialization and then pull together a report to come up with a plan. The Task Force will also be creating an emergency response manual.

 

The Task Force, through the Mountain Human Services Collaborative, has identified grant funding through Foothills United Way for a mountain resource liaison, a part-time position filled by Kristi Venditti, the outreach coordinator for the Nederland Elementary School.

 

In early 2013, the Task Force was established out of a request from local officials to bring together and coordinate the services of local nonprofits and County service providers in the Peak to Peak region, according to a written report. The Task Force has been meeting monthly ever since to share information and data, to assess needs and to work toward solutions for better coordinated services. Members include representatives from local nonprofits and government agencies, Boulder County, EFAA, United Way, VIA and community advocates.

 

This consultative body identified several areas of need, prioritizing housing, basic needs, transportation and healthcare. The Task Force is dedicated to improving access to housing, transportation, health care and human services for residents of the mountain communities in western Boulder County.

 

For more information contact Lawrence at rjlawrence333@gmail.com or Peak to Peak Housing and Human Services Chair Dennis Whalen, at Dennis.W.Whalen@gmail.com.

 

Larsen said the best point of contact for the Task Force with the Board would be through the Community Center and Coordinator Dawn Baumhover. He also said he would get the group on the agenda for updates at future meetings.

 

(Originally published in the August 24, 2017 print edition of The Mountain-Ear.)