By Joseph Lekarczyk
In the interest of full disclosure, let it be known that the author of this article is married to the Mayor.
After a pre-meeting workshop on the guidelines of a possible retail recreational marijuana ordinance, the Board of Trustees (BOT) went into an executive session on Monday night to discuss “determining positions relative to matters that may be subject to negotiations, developing strategy for negotiations, and instructing
negotiators for the possible purchase of real property.” Spoiler alert! If you don’t want to know the results of their “determinations” until they chronologically unfold, don’t read the rest of this sentence and instead skip to the next paragraph; they agreed to purchase the Hains property adjacent to Meadow Park.
During Lyons Substation Supervisor Sgt. Nick Goldberger’s report, he informed the Trustees that the recent robbery at the St. Vrain Pharmacy was still an “open case, and under investigation.” He added that the female robber was after prescription medicines. He also reported that a motorcycle rider had to “lay his bike down” to try to avoid a collision with a vehicle that the driver of the motorcycle thought was going to pull out in front of him. Neither the motorcycle driver nor his passenger was seriously injured. Goldberger also informed the Board that there have been reports of “funny money” being passed at businesses in Lyons. So far, all the denominations have been tens and twenties, but the Secret Service has been called into the matter, and they have warned all local businesses and banks to be extra vigilant.
The request by the Golden Gang for a special event liquor permit to sell beer and/or wine during the Thursday Night Sandstone Park Summer Concert Series was postponed, by request of the petitioner, until a date to be determined. Also, the consent agenda, consisting with the July 1, BOT meeting minutes, the July accounts payable, and the May financials was passed in a 6 – 0 vote (Trustee Dan Greenberg was out of town).
The first reading of an ordinance adopting design standards and guidelines for commercial and mix use zones outside of the downtown area (i.e. the Commercial Eastern Corridor) was approved for second reading and a public hearing on Monday, August 5. Planner Bob Joseph went over the particulars, which has been worked on and batted back and forth between the Planning and Community Development Commission, the BOT, and the Economic Development Commission for seemingly the last eighteen months or so. Some of the topics discussed and refined were: landscape design, set backs, parking, lighting, roof and building design, color, enhancing pedestrian access, integrating existing natural features. And then there were the usual typos, numbering problems, and “word-smithing” that go into crafting the language for an ordinance. It was a bit of a slog.
During general business, the Trustees passed a resolution to approve the purchase of the Hains property within Meadow Park for $325,000 to be paid over the next four years at approximately three percent interest. The property is the private home located behind the fence in the northwest corner of Meadow Park near the “old swimming hole.” No immediate or long-term plans are on the drawing board for what to do with the property, but according to Trustee LaVern Johnson, “the Town has wanted to get their hands on that piece of land for a long time "(and she should know). Presumably, the BOT will task the Parks & Recreation Board with getting public input, and going over the POST Plan (Parks, Open Space, and Trails), which is similar to the Comp Plan that the Town uses as a planning tool/guide, to come up with ideas and priorities. The Trustees also instructed Administrator Victoria Simonsen to get together with Parks & Rec. Supervisor Dave Cosgrove to start putting together a GoCo (Go Colorado) grant for land acquisition immediately to help pay for the purchase.
A second resolution approving a professional services agreement with Natural Capitalism Solutions, a firm located in Hygiene, to help create a sustainability plan for the Town of Lyons. The cost of the plan (a $25,000 contract) will be split between the Town and Boulder County. There was also an approval of a resolution to merge the water and sewer enterprise funds. This was an approved practice by the State of Colorado, and will help in the financing of the proposed replacement of the existing wastewater treatment plant. Concerning the same matter, a fourth resolution was passed authorizing Staff to submit a proposal for a Colorado Water Development and Power Authority loan. The Town would be seeking a loan for as much as 5.2 million dollars for the upgrade of the wastewater plant, but the actual amount borrowed could be lower depending on the final approval of plans.
Still sticking with the wastewater treatment theme, Trustee Sandy Banta presented the Board with an informational update on the wastewater treatment plant improvements. There wasn’t much to report during Trustee and Staff reports since many of the Boards and Commissions were taking time off because of summer vacations, etc. But Trustee Banta did mention that everyone should check out Jake Pinello’s latest sculpture “As The Crow Flies,” which is located next to Steamboat Natural Foods on High Street. Mayor Julie Van Domelen reported that attendance was down at the last swimming pool steering committee meeting (maybe everyone was over at the Sunset Pool in Longmont or the Boulder Rez), but progress continues to be made and information gathered. Simonsen advised the Board that at the last Colorado Municipal League meeting, the Town of Lyons was awarded a “Most Improved” plaque by CIRSA (the group that insures municipalities in Colorado) in recognition of the strides that the Town has made in safety procedures and protocols, and decreasing insurance claims. This was quite a feather in Simonsen’s cap since when she came on the job about three years ago, the Town of Lyons had been put on probation by CIRSA. The Trustees voted to give Simonsen a three hundred dollar bonus for a job well done.
It was getting late, and everyone had been there since 5:30 p.m. A motion was made to adjourn, and they did.