By Joseph Lekarczyk 

No pre-meeting workshop, no post-meeting executive session. One might have suspected it would be an early evening at Town Hall for the Board of Trustee (BOT) meeting Tuesday night (Monday was the Fourth of July). One would have been wrong; very wrong.

Lyons Substation Supervisor Sgt Nick Goldberger of the Boulder County Sheriff’s Office reported that due to a “low turnout” for Good Old Days, he sent his extra deputies home early, and

that things went very well overall. Not so at Black Bear Hole over the Fourth of July weekend celebration. With Bohn and LaVern M. Johnson Parks not yet ready for the public, things got a little out of hand at the Black Bear as hundreds of people went down to the river to beat the heat. Some of the problems included drinking of alcohol, smoking of cigarettes etc., use of illegal grills, not enough trash containers, inadequate number of port-a-potties, graffiti, and even topless sunbathing! “Oh yes I say we got trouble, Right here in River City! Capital T, and that rhymes with B, and that stands for Black Bear.”

Goldberger also informed the Board that his deputies have monitored the increased traffic flow on Evans and Park Streets from drivers looking to avoid the congestion on Main Street. He said that there has been an increase, but of the sixty or so vehicles that his crew checked with radar, only one was exceeding the twenty-five mile per hour speed limit, and that one was going twenty-six mph. Goldberger speculated that “heavy volume” of cars makes it seem like they are speeding.

During staff reports, Town Planner Matt Manley updated the Board on various aspects of the progress toward affordable replacement housing (see Amy Rheinholds’ column in this edition), and Town Administrator Victoria Simonsen informed the Trustees that a break in a water main at a business in Lyons that was not repaired in a timely fashion has resulted in a “spike” in water use, and in addition to increased cost, will also result in a “fine” from our provider (the City of Longmont). Apparently the leak has now been addressed, leaving only the recouping of costs.

The Trustees heard from Bill Eliasen of the Lyons Fire Protection District Board of Directors. He was floating the idea of coming up with an Intergovernmental Agreement between the Town and the District for Life Safety Services. This will involve bringing the Town’s fire codes, which Eliasen indicated were, “antiquated” up to date and more aligned with current international standards. There will be a future workshop to address this issue.

A couple of girl scouts approached the Board to seek permission to set up a lemonade stand near “the bears” during RockyGrass. It seems they are trying to earn money for a trip to Europe. It seems, according to Simonsen, that doing it by-the-book is a little more complicated than just a wink-and-a-nod. But Mayor Connie Sullivan came to the rescue by offering the patio space at the St. Vrain Market (private property) to the young entrepreneurs. The “fee” for the temporary business license, citing the “youth clause,” will presumably be waived.

Good luck ladies, and now we all know where to go to get our lemonade during the festival.

Acting as the Lyons Liquor Authority the Board approved a bevy of special event permits for benefits to be held at the Lyons Farmette in July and September, and one for the River Bend in late August.

During General Business a resolution determining that a business providing end of life professional services (but not on site embalming or cremation) shall be considered a permitted use in the Commercial Downtown Zone District was approved. Trustee Dan Greenberg indicated he “was not comfortable with the process,” (meaning the BOT’s process for approval, not the business) but was in favor of the innovative business model. Trustee Juli Waugh was also in favor of the business, but felt that perhaps this should have been deemed a “conditional use,” and therefore was not go vote in the affirmative. The measure passed in a six to one vote.
Next up was a public hearing and resolution to approve a plat amendment and lot line realignment for a property at the top of Fourth Avenue abutting the cemetery. This was dealt with in a matter of minutes. Then it was on to the “main event,” the second reading and public hearing for an ordinance to change the zoning for the former Valley Bank property from commercial to a PUD-Commercial and PUD-Residential so that the site can accommodate six units of Habit For Humanity affordable housing as well as commercial use of the bank building (see Amy Rheinholds’ column in this edition).

Not too surprisingly, this last item took a little time to explain and hash out, especially since no one: the Trustees, the Housing Coordinator, the Attorney, the Clerk, the Planner, the Administrator, nor the petitioner seemed to have the same draft/copy of the ordinance. After about fifteen minutes of trying to figure out what page they were on, what paragraph was being referenced, what had been red-lined, what was deleted, and what changes and amendments where being discussed, Mayor Sullivan suggested a “five minute” recess to get thing sorted out and organized.

When the meeting was reconvened the presentation/discussion/public hearing went on into the night. After the “usual” 10:30 p.m. “drop dead” threshold had come and gone and the hour approached 10:45, a vote to approve was taken. It passed, and Trustee Waugh suggested that a new “11:30 p.m. drop dead” line be drawn in the sand to finish up the remaining items (vacating a certain right of way, approving the final plat for improvements for the Valley Bank parcel, the consent agenda, a discussion with Town Attorney on a lodging tax, and TABOR requirements on enterprise funds, and Trustee reports) on the agenda. The press (both the Lyons Recorder and the Redstone Review) cried “uncle,” and packed up their notebooks and left the proceedings. That left only ever-diligent Amy Rheinholds to witness the final disposition of the evening’s agenda. Rumor has it, they made the 11:30 cut off with a few minutes to spare.    

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