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MINUTES OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS

 

Monday, DECEMBER 5, 2005

 

LAND USE HEARING

(#127 & 128)

 

The Board of County Commissioners met at 3:00 p.m. with Rob Helmick, Principle Planner.  Chair Rennels presided and Commissioners Wagner and Gibson were present.  Also present were:  Matt Lafferty, Porter Ingrum, and David Karan, Planning Department; Jim Reidhead, Rural Land Use Center; Christie Coleman, and Traci Downs, Engineering Department; Doug Ryan, Environmental Health Department; Jeannine Haag, Assistant County Attorney; and Gael Cookman, Deputy Clerk.

 

Chair Rennels opened the meeting with the Pledge of Allegiance, and asked for public comment on the County Budget and Land Use Code.  No one from the audience addressed the Board regarding these topics.   Chair Rennels explained that Items 1 - 3 are consent items and would not be discussed unless requested by the Board, staff, or members of the audience:  

 

1.  WENNINGER PRELIMINARY RURAL LAND USE PLAN (RLUP) TIME EXTENSION - 04-S2234:   This is a request to extend the preliminary approval for the Wenninger Preliminary RLUP until June 1, 2006.  The preliminary approval for the Wenninger RLUP was granted on August 16, 2004, and the Findings and Resolution was signed by the Board of County Commissioners on September 21, 2004.   The applicant is requesting this extension due to health problems that have caused delay in proceeding with the project.   The applicant has received one 90-day extension to the Final Plat and Final Development Agreement deadline (allowed by the Rural Land Use Process, Section 5.8.5.C.17), which will expire on December 20, 2005.  This application is requesting an extension of the final plat deadline up until and including June 1, 2006.  Staff findings are as follows: 

 

1.   The Wenninger Preliminary RLUP was approved September 21, 2004, with conditions.

2.   The applicant is requesting a time extension until June 1, 2006, to submit the Final Plat, Final Development Agreement and other required submittals.

3.   The proposed project is important because it is compatible with other land conservation efforts in the Hidden Valley/Devil’s Backbone area.  Developing through the RLUP, rather than the other development alternatives, will provide significant benefits to Larimer County.

 

Staff recommendation is for approval of the time extension of the Wenninger Preliminary Rural Land Use Plan until and including June 1, 2006.  All conditions of approval as stated in the Findings and Resolution dated September 21, 2004, continue to apply.

 

2.  MCCORMICK MINOR RESIDENTIAL DEVELOPMENT LOTS 1 AND 2 AMENDED PLAT - 05-S2506:   This request is for an amended plat to reconfigure the boundary line between Lots 1 & 2 of the McCormick Minor Residential Development to coincide with the fencing separating the properties.  Parcel sizes will retain their original platted acreages. The Development Services Team recommends that the Board of County Commissioners approve the Amended Plat for McCormick MRD Lots 1 and 2, File #05-S2506, subject to the following conditions and authorization for the Chair to sign the plat when the conditions are met and the plat is presented for signature:

1.  All conditions of approval shall be met and the Final Plat recorded by June 5, 2006, or this approval shall be null and void.

2.  Prior to the recordation of the Final Plat the application shall make the technical corrections required by Dale Greer, Land Surveyor of the Larimer County Engineering Department.

 

3.  ROSELLE-SHIELDS MINOR LAND DIVISION LOTS 1 AND 2 AMENDED PLAT - 05-S2505:  This is a request to amend the plat of Roselle-Shields MLD to adjust the lot lines between Lot 1 and Lot 2 to increase the acreage on Lot 1.  There have been no objections to this proposal by surrounding neighbors.  Additionally, the following Larimer County agencies have stated that they have no objections to this proposal: The Larimer County Department of Health and Environment, the Land Surveyor of the Larimer County Engineering Department, the Larimer County Engineering Department Development Review Team. 

A concern was raised from Engineering and Planning staff with regards to the lack of access for the portion of Lot 1 that is on the eastern side of the existing ditch.  The applicant has submitted revised plans that show a 30-foot access easement for Lots 1 and 2 along the eastern property line.   The proposed plat amendment to adjust the common lot line between two contiguous lots will not adversely affect any neighboring properties or any County agency.  The Amended Plat will not result in any additional lots.  Staff finds that the request meets the requirements of the Larimer County Land Use Code.

The Development Service Team recommends approval of File #05-2505, the Amended Plat of the Roselle-Shields MLD, subject to the following conditions and authorization for the Chair to sign the plat when the conditions are met and the plat is presented for signature:

 

1.   The Final Plat shall be recorded by June 5, 2006, or this approval shall be null and void.

2.   Prior to the recordation of the Final Plat the applicant shall make the technical corrections requested by Dale Greer, Land Surveyor of the Larimer County Engineering Department.

 

M O T I O N

Commissioner Gibson moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve Items 1 - 3, as listed on the Consent Agenda for December 5, 2005, and outlined above.

Motion carried 3-0.

 

4.  REDMON LOT SIZE APPEAL - 05-G0088:   This is a request for an appeal to the 10-acre, O-Open zoning district minimum lot size (LCLUC Section 4.1.5.B.1.a)  The parcel is located on the south side of County Road 62E, 1.5 miles west of Wellington.  On July 15, 2004, it was determined that there are two legal lots under one parcel number.  The owner wants to adjust the boundary line between this 10-acre parcel and an adjacent 15-acre parcel.  The (concurrent) Boundary Line Adjustment would result in a 2.5 acre parcel which would contain the existing house and accessory buildings.  A Boundary Line Adjustment (BLA) application was submitted concurrent with this appeal.  The BLA would result in one 2.5 acre parcel and one 20+ acre parcel.  During the pre-application conference, the applicant made the argument that other parcels in the area are less than the minimum lot size and the 2.5 acre lot would fit the existing development pattern. 

Staff does not support approval this appeal due to the following:  1) The balance of the property would be more than 20 acres and could be further divided.  Approval of this request would allow creation of a 20-acre parcel and a 2.5 acre parcel.  Under Section 5 of the LCLUC, the resulting 20-acre parcel could be further divided.  In effect, this appeal would result in an up-zoning.  2) Most of the parcels in Section 32 are larger than 10 acres.  Most of the parcels which form the viewshed from the Redmon property are significantly larger than 10 acres.  It is true that most parcels in the east ½ Section of the Southwest Quarter of Section 32 are less than 10 acres.  However the Southeast Quarter Section is intact.  The Northeast quarter is divided into only two parcels, both larger than 10 acres.  All of the lots in the Northwest Quarter are significantly larger than 10 acres.  The dominant development pattern in the area conforms to zoned densities. 

The Development Services Team recommends denial of the request to allow creation of a lot smaller than the minimum lot size required by existing zoning.   The other option is to revise the proposal so the resulting lots are less than 20 acres.

Mr. Karan stated that currently the applicant only has the ability to create two parcels; however, if the appeal is approved, it results in an up-zoning, as it allows him the opportunity to develop three parcels. 

The applicant, Travis Redmon, and his representative, Lou Kinzli, addressed the Board.  Mr. Kinzli explained that the proposal is consistent with the surrounding properties in the area, when focusing on the southwest portion of Section 32.  Mr. Kinzli noted that currently the land value is disproportionate to the improvement value, which has caused the property to be less marketable; he stated that Mr. Redmon's proposal would help rectify this problem.  Mr. Redmon explained that he does not intend to further subdivide the 20-acre parcel, and that he simply wants to build a home for himself on this piece of land. 

There was no public comment on this item.

Commissioner Gibson questioned if the surrounding properties had been divided prior to the Land Use Code taking affect.  Mr. Helmick replied in the affirmative.  Commissioner Wagner stated that part of the basis for creating the Land Use Code was to make sure that up-zoning and down-zoning did not occur; therefore, she would only support the appeal if the larger parcel was restricted from further development.  Chair Rennels asked if Mr. Redmon would be willing to place a deed restriction on the parcel to protect it from further development.  Mr. Redmon conferred with Mr. Kinzli, and then stated that he would accept the deed restriction if the only other option was denial of the appeal. 

M O T I O N

Commissioner Wagner moved that the Board of County Commissioners grant a lot size variance to create a 2.5 acre parcel, and place a deed restriction on the balance of the remaining property to prohibit further subdividing this property; however, such deed restriction could be removed by the Town of Wellington should annexation occur.

Motion carried 3-0.

 

5.  COUNTRY ROAD CONDOMINIUM MAP - #05-S2504:  The applicant requests that the County ratify the Condominium Plat for Country Road Condominiums that has been recorded without the required County Commissioner approval.  The property includes a 1.5 acre parcel and 6 buildings of 2 condominium units each, for a total of 12 condominium units.  The plat and associated homeowners documents were recorded in 2001.  The applicant has indicated that he was initially misinformed that there was no process through the County to turn existing property into condominiums.  Prior to the adoption of the current Land Use Code this was correct.  However, a Condominium Map process was included with the adoption of the Larimer County Land Use Code in 1999.  This application is a request by the original owner of the property for ratification of the recorded Condominium Map so that the property is in compliance with the Land Use Code requirement for County approval of this type of land division. 

A condominium application requires the applicant to submit a condominium plat illustrating all the common elements such as parking and open areas, as well as the Condominium Declarations, disclosing the maintenance responsibility and use of property around and common to the condominium units.  The required, previously recorded, items have been submitted to the Planning Department.  Review of the submitted material reveals appropriate documentation of the common elements and adequately described and assigns maintenance responsibility of the property.

The County does not have a process specifically designed for approval of a Condominium Map after it has been recorded.  As a result this application is being processed without creating a new Condominium Map and associated property owners documents, with the resulting Findings and Resolution being the mechanism to serve as a record of County action on this application.  All current owners and lienholders (information provided by applicant) of the properties have been notified of this application and this hearing.

The Development Services Team findings are as follows:

1.   All improvements for the Country Road Condominiums are currently in place.

2.   The Country Road Condominium Map and declarations are in compliance with the Larimer County Master Plan and Land Use Code.

3.   The Country Road Condominium Map is compatible with the other development in the surrounding area.

4.   Ratification of the Country Road Condominium Map will not result in any significant impacts to the neighboring properties, the natural environment, or the provision of services and infrastructure.

5.   Property values in the surrounding area would not be adversely affected by the approval of the Country Road Condominium Map.

6.   Maintenance of the buildings, parking lots, and other common areas will continue to be the responsibility of the property owners association, pursuant to the Declaration of Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions for Country Road Condominiums.

 

The Development Services Team recommends approval of the Country Road Condominium Map, File #05-S2504.

Mr. Helmick explained that the plat was recorded without first receiving the required approval from the Commissioners.  The applicant, Mike Turner, stated that he did not know of the requirement for the Board to approve the plat, and requested the Board's approval in order to correct this issue.   During public comment, Clark Patterson, Country Road Condominium property owner, stated that he too requested the Board's approval on this action.

M O T I O N

Commissioner Gibson moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the Country Road Condominium Map, File #05-S2504.

Motion carried 3-0.

 

6.   HOFF CONSERVATION DEVELOPMENT - #03-S2205:   This is a request for approval of a Preliminary Plat and review for a proposed Conservation Development to divide 146 acres into 14 lots including three residual lots.

 

On December 15, 2004, the Larimer County Planning Commission considered the Hoff Conservation Development.  This proposal went to the Planning Commission with a recommendation of denial.  Staff’s basis for this recommendation was that a cluster located in the center of the property did not adequately achieve the Conservation Development Master Plan goal of retaining agriculture.  In the Development Services Team’s opinion:  1) This puts residences in the way of irrigation.  2) Three Residual Lots were proposed.  All other things being equal, the larger the parcel the more likely land will be farmed.  3) Adjacent property to the east is undeveloped and is in active agriculture.  Centralized placement of the cluster does not take advantage of the potential for creating more than a quarter section of contiguous agricultural land.  Staff recommended placement on the western border of the property, clustering with existing residential use.  Staff believed that requiring “cross-property clustering” was warranted in this case.

During public comment, Mr. Brad Pomeroy spoke in behalf of the mineral estate for the Wellington Operating Company.  The Company operates an oil well on the Hoff property.  Mr. Pomeroy stated their company would be opposed to locating the cluster on the western portion of the property.

 

The Planning Commissioners discussed the issue of cluster location at some length.  The Commission voted 7-1 to recommend approval of the proposal.  Given the Planning Commission’s position and the comments of Wellington Operating Company, staff decided not to reopen discussion of the residual land/cluster design issue.  Since the hearing, staff and the applicant have resolved all other outstanding issues through proposal revisions or appeals.  The two appeals are:

1) LCLUC Section 5.3.6.B.1.f which requires all residual lots in a Conservation Development to be at least 35 acres, and;

2) LCLUC Section 8.14.2.Q which requires a second access for emergency purposes when a dead end cul-de-sac access in Ranges 68 and 69 exceeds 660 feet. 

Staff supports Appeal 1 because the proposed residual lot configuration is needed to provide connectivity to the large parcel to the south. In this location, a 20.6 acre parcel would not be significantly less farmable than a 35 acre lot.  The applicant also states that the design facilitates irrigation and drainage. 

Staff supports Appeal 2 because the Poudre Fire Authority has agreed that individual sprinklering of the homes will be sufficient fire protection.  In summary, the Development Services Team supports the proposal as revised. 

The Development Services Team recommends to the Board of County Commissioners:

 

1.   Approval of the appeal to LCLUC Section 5.3.6.B.1.f.

2.   Approval of the appeal to LCLUC Section 8.14.2.Q.

3.   Approval of the Hoff Conservation Development (file # 03-S2205) with the following conditions:

a.   The Final Plat shall be consistent with the approved Preliminary Plat and with the information contained in the Hoff Conservation Development (File #03-S2205).  The applicant shall be subject to all other verbal or written representations and commitments of record for the Hoff Conservation Development.

b.   Engineered foundations are required for new habitable construction on this site as recommended by the Colorado Geologic Survey.

c.   Passive radon mitigation measures shall be included in the construction of all new residential structures on these lots.  The results of a radon detection test once the structure is enclosed but prior to issuance of a Certificate of Occupancy shall be submitted to the Building Department.  As an alternative, a builder may present a prepaid receipt from a radon tester that specifies that a test will be done within 30 days. A permanent Certificate of Occupancy can be issued when the prepaid receipt is submitted.

d.   The following fees shall be collected at the time a building permit is applied for the new single family dwellings:  Poudre R-1 school fee, Larimer County fees for County and Regional Transportation Capital Expansion (TCEFs), Larimer County Regional Park Fee (in lieu of dedication) and drainage fee.  The fee amount that is current at the time of building permit application shall apply. Both the Development Agreements and the Disclosure Affidavits will reference this requirement.  The County Engineer’s office also requires a Developmental Construction Permit, prior to commencing development construction.

e.   The applicant shall execute a Disclosure Notice for approval by the County to be recorded with the Final Plat.  This notice shall provide information to all lot owners of the conditions of approval and special costs or fees associated with the approval of this project.  The notice shall include, but not be limited to, issues related to rural development, fire department requirements, requirements for any access permits and culverts, recommendations of the State Geological Survey (addressing foundations), building envelopes, the need for passive radon mitigation, and issues raised in the review and/or related to compliance with the Larimer County Land Use Code.

f.   The applicant shall provide connectivity to the south property line by constructing the local road to County local road standards and dedicating the 60-foot public right-of-way to the south property line.  The Final Plat and construction plans showing this connection shall be approved by County Planning and Engineering Departments during the Final Plat process.

 

Mr. Karan gave a brief presentation of the application as outlined above.  Commissioner Wagner expressed concern with the manner in which the homes are situated as it could negatively affect development regarding the parcel to the south.  Mr. Karan noted that the home sites were placed as they are mainly due to the oil and gas wells located in the area.  The applicant, Mike DiTullio, stated that they have worked very hard to come up with a project that meets the Land Use Code and maintains good use of the land.  

 

Chair Rennels opened up the hearing for public comment and Harry Elder, adjoining neighbor, stated that he is in favor of the proposal as it is presented, and is happy that the homes are situated as they are, because it maintains the open space that they are accustomed to.  There was no additional public comment.

 

Chair Rennels also expressed concern that the placement of the home sites, but indicated support for the project, as did Commissioner Gibson.  Commissioner Wagner stated that in her opinion, this proposal fails to meet the objectives of conservation developments; therefore, she did not support it.

 

M O T I O N

Commissioner Gibson moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the appeal to Section 5.3.6.B.1.f. and Section 8.14.2.Q of the Larimer County Land Use Code, and approve the Hoff Conservation Development, File # 03-S2205, with the conditions recommended by staff.

 

Motion carried 2-1, Commissioner Wagner dissenting.

 

7.  KELLER RANCH RURAL LAND USE PLAN (RLUP) - #05-S2435:   This is a request for preliminary approval to divide 254 +/- acres into twenty (20) lots in the following manner:  Thirteen (13) new single-family residential lots located on about 34 acres (lots ranging from 2 to 6.5 acres in size) and seven (7) Residual Lots (private open space). Four of the residual lots will have a one-acre building envelope for support buildings.  Residual Lot D will contain the existing residence and ag-related buildings within a 4-acre building envelope.  Out of the total assembly of 254 acres, 212 +/- acres will be protected from any further development in perpetuity by either a covenant or conservation easement, as required by the RLUP.  The existing agricultural uses (irrigated crop land, dry pasture land, and wetlands surrounding Bubbles Lake) on the residual land will continue.

The property is located in Section 12, Township 9 North, Range 69 West and Section 7, Township 9 North, Range 69 West and Section 7, Township 9 North, Range 68 West.  It is generally located 4 ½ miles northwest of the Town of Wellington, about 1 ½ miles north-northeast of the Waverly community, immediately west and east of County Road 13 between County Roads 70 and 72.  The land could be divided into seven (7) 35-acre parcels without County input.  The property is zoned O-Open.  Under the property’s current O-Open zoning (1 home site per 10 acres), up to 25 homes could potentially be built if brought through the County's Conservation Development (CD) process if adequate public facilities are provided. 

One residence already exists on the proposed Residual Lot D.  The size of the new residential lots has been kept relatively small (subject to suitability of soils for on-site septic systems) in order to maximize the amount of land that will remain in agriculture or preserved as open space and wildlife habitat.  Most of the new residential lots are located on the non-irrigated portion of the property in the vicinity of Bubbles Lake, formerly used as a water-storage reservoir by North Poudre Irrigation Company.  All construction will be kept 300 feet from the historic high-water line of the reservoir.  These lots have good views of the mountains.  One existing home is located on Residual Lot E within a 4-acre building envelope.  Access to these new lots is proposed from County Roads 13 and 72.      

The residential lots will range from 2 to 6.5 acres in size.  Water to these lots will be provided by Northern Colorado Water Association and one on-lot well will provide water to the existing home site on Residual Lot D.  The applicant is proposing appropriate architectural guidelines for this project to mitigate the visual impact of the proposed new residences and associated structures.  The surrounding properties consist of parcels ranging in size from 5 to 520 acres in size.

There is significant development pressure in this area for 35-acre parcels and smaller residential lots, if available.  This pressure is caused by general growth along the Front Range, as well as by pressure specifically associated with growth in Fort Collins and Wellington to the south, and attractiveness of “close-in” rural property.  The proposed density of the Keller Ranch Rural Land Use project, one unit per 18.2 acres, appears to be compatible with the neighborhood.

The residual land, approximately 212 acres and comprising roughly 83.4% of the property, will be protected from further development in perpetuity by either a covenant or conservation easement, as required by the RLUP.  Most of the western portion of the property, roughly 130.5 acres, will remain as residual land.  It’s particularly important to keep the irrigation pivot in operation.  The project has been designed to allow for that. 

Although no longer used as a water storage reservoir, Bubbles Lake continues to have small amounts of water through sub-irrigation.  This area, including stands of mature trees around the abandoned reservoir, appears to be an important wildlife habitat, both for birds and mammals.  The applicants wish to reserve the right to use the reservoir for future storage of irrigation water if feasible.  Until that time, it will be maintained in its current state with sub-irrigated small ponds with wetland vegetation.  The residual lots will have a management/use plan to foster its long-term health.  The management/use plan will address grazing practices, including flash grazing protocols, weed control, and management of the Bubbles Lake wetland and wildlife habitat area.  The owners of the residual land parcels will be responsible for maintaining the residual land and for providing a periodic monitoring report(s) to the County. 

A neighborhood meeting was held on September 27, 2005, at the Comfort Inn in Wellington.  Seven area residents attended.  The concerns were mainly about architectural controls and location of home sites.   

Referral agency comments were also solicited.  Representatives from the County Engineering Department, Health Department, and Rural Land Use Advisory Board have visited the site and have consulted with the Rural Land Use Center during the conceptual design phase.

 

The centerline of County Road 13 generally runs along the north/south section line between Sections 12 and 7.  The two parcels that make up the subject property are divided by County Road 13 but share a common boundary which is the section line.  Therefore, for the purposes of the Rural Land Use Process, both properties are considered to be contiguous.

 

In their comments, Mr. Doug Ryan with the Health Department and Mr. Porter Ingrum, Environmental Planner, addressed the need to create appropriate buffers between the Bubbles Lake wetlands on Residual Lot A and new residential construction.  Mr. Ryan’s recommendation is that “the minimum buffer should be at least 100 feet from the shoreline or wetland edge.  If soil testing shows shallow groundwater within the area of the lots, that buffer may need to be increased”.   Mr. Ryan also states that it is important to coordinate the buffer for septic system issues with the buffer for wildlife protection. 

 

Referring to the original conceptual plat, Mr. Ingrum states “that the applicant should move Lot 10 and perhaps Lot 11 further away from the cottonwood trees on the eastern edge of Bubbles Lake.  DOW recommends a ¼ mile buffer for a red-tailed hawk’s nest.  This buffer may be larger than the applicant can accommodate, so the buffer should be as large as possible”.  Regarding the lots on the west side of Bubbles Lake, Mr. Ingrum states: “Building envelopes on Lots 1-9 should be placed near the road that provides access to the lots to provide additional buffer space to the cottonwood trees located along the western edge of Bubbles Lake”.

In response to these concerns, the applicants will create building envelopes on Lots 1-9 which will ensure that all construction will be at least 300 feet from the historic high-water line of the reservoir.  Also, in response to the request to create a buffer between Lot 10 and the “cottonwood trees on the eastern edge of Bubbles Lake” (the site of the raptor nest); the eastern cluster was reduced from 4 to 3 lots, with one lot being placed on the western side of the project.  Mr. Ingrum also suggested that since a ¼-mile buffer from the raptor nest is not feasible, a non-construction period from March 1 through June 15 (the typical raptor nesting period) for Lots 10-12 would be a good idea.  This will be made a condition of approval.

Preliminary soil testing prior to final plat review shall be performed to determine suitability for on-site septic systems.  Test results shall be reviewed and approved by the Health Department.

 

The County Engineering Department asks that all existing fences and structures be moved out of the existing and proposed dedicated right-of-way as part of this development proposal.  The Engineering Department anticipates no right-of-way conflicts with the Keller RLUP project.

 

Global Engineering Issues:

 

1.   Drainage paths and basins for historic flows must be identified and preserved.  Effective drainage paths for new development must be provided.  All building envelopes must be sited so that they do not interfere with existing drainage patterns.

2.   This project will access off of LCR 13 and LCR 70.  The Larimer County Transportation Plan, adopted in September of 2000, functionally classifies LCR 13 and LCR 70 as Local Roads that require a 60-foot right-of-way (30-foot half right-of-way).  In the next submittal, delineate the existing and any proposed dedicated right-of-way necessary to satisfy this requirement (see Section 9.7.2 of the LCLUC).

3.   The County Engineering Department asks that all existing fences and structures be moved out of the existing and proposed dedicated right-of-way as part of this development proposal. 

4.   Due to various topographical constraints the sight distance at the site entrance off of Larimer County Road 13 may be compromised.  A sight distance evaluation as part of the Final Plat process could assist in placing the site access in a safe location and insure that adequate sight distance is provided.

5.   For informational purposes only, the most recent traffic counts recorded are referenced below (taken on LCR 13 north of LCR 70):

 

(ADT = Average Daily Traffic)
(YR = Year count was taken)

(WK = Calendar week subject year)

(% = Percentage increase or decrease)

 
ADT

Yr/Wk

%

-

-

-

30

1998/26

-

33

2002/30

+9.1%

 

6.   For informational purposes only, the most recent traffic counts recorded office are referenced below (taken on LCR 72 east of LCR 13):

(ADT = Average Daily Traffic)
(YR = Year count was taken)

(WK = Calendar week subject year)

(% = Percentage increase or decrease)

 
 


ADT

Yr/Wk

%

-

-

-

60

1998/26

-

52

2002/30

-15.4%

Per Section 9.5 of the LCLUC, Engineering Staff would like to notify the applicant that Transportation Capital Expansion Fees will be required at the time of building permit issuance in accordance with duly enacted transportation capital expansion fee regulations then in effect.

 

The farmstead on Residual Lot B uses an existing well for its water supply.  Water for the 13 cluster lots is to be supplied by the Northern Colorado Water Association.  The County’s Land Use Code contains level of service standards for domestic water service in Section 8.1.2.  In order to demonstrate compliance with those standards, the applicant will need to obtain a letter of commitment from the Association for inclusion with the Final Plat submittal.  The letter needs to specifically state that the water distribution system is (or will be) designed to meet the normal and minimum pressure design standards contained in Section 8.1.2.A.1 of the Land Use Code, or more stringent standards as required by the Association. If the water system will be designed to provide fire protection, the letter of commitment also needs to address the pressure and delivery standards outlined in Section 8.1.4 of the Land Use Code. 

Sewer is to be by individual on-site systems.  A preliminary indication of the suitability of the property for septic systems can be obtained by a review of the county soil survey.  Because of the emphasis on protecting prime irrigated farmland, the residential lots have been located on the east side of County Road 3.  As might be expected, soils in this area are more constrained for septic systems than on the prime agricultural land.  The principle constraints are shallow depth to sandstone bedrock, and the potential for wet soils near the reservoir.  Based on these constraints, preliminary soil tests should be conducted prior to the Final Plat review.  Other important site features include the wetlands and shoreline associated with Bubbles Lake.  The preliminary plan shows a buffer between the shoreline/wetlands and the adjacent residential lots.  The minimum buffer should be at least 100 feet from the shoreline or wetland edge.  If soil testing shows shallow groundwater within the area of the lots, that buffer may need to be increased.  It is also important to coordinate the buffer for septic system issues with the buffer for wildlife protection.  Assuming that soil tests indicate reasonable soil and groundwater conditions, the proposal to cluster with two-acre size lots should be workable. 

Lot 10 appears to be located within the high-water/spillway area south of the earthen dam.  This lot should be shifted to the south. 

The area surrounding this proposal is rural in nature and future occupants should be aware of some unique issues that may be encountered.  Examples include lack of mosquito control, potential conflicts with wildlife, and adjacent agricultural operations. Disclosure affidavits should be prepared to inform potential owners about these types of issues. 

The zoning for this area allows for horses and other livestock.  If livestock are to be kept, the owners should be aware that lots of this size must be managed very carefully in order to maintain grass cover in the pasture.  Overgrazing produces lots with bare ground and scattered weeds.  Erosion and polluted runoff results from such a situation, and affect the lot owner, neighbors and the environment.  The Larimer County Cooperative Extension Service has extensive information about pasture management.  Lot owners should contact that office if they intend to keep livestock.

All construction activities are required to obtain coverage under a State level stormwater management permit if they disturb one or more acres of land. The permits are administered by the Colorado Department of Health and Environment, Water Quality Control Division.  The main pollutant of concern for construction activities is sediment.  The permits require holders to control or eliminate the sources of pollutants in stormwater through the implementation of a Stormwater Management Plan, developed as part of the application process.  These Stormwater Management Plans must include Best Management Practices (BMPs) that include treatment of stormwater discharges along with source reductions.  Inclusion of the BMPs allows most permits to avoid numeric effluent limits. 

Staff conducted a site visit to verify the existing environmental features of the property and the site visit revealed that the lake contains little water but does have a large wetland.  The wetland is dominated by Cattail (Typhus) and the lake has stands of mature cottonwoods located at the eastern and western edges of the wetland. Staff found the raptors nest in one of the cottonwood trees near Lot 10 and a cavity in one of the cottonwoods that could be a nesting site for a cavity nesting raptor.  Cottonwood trees are generally regarded by the Division of Wildlife to be valuable habitat for migratory songbirds and raptors. 

The Larimer County Land Use Code (LCLUC), Section 5.8.3 states that one of the goals and purposes of the RLUP is:  “To preserve and protect critical County areas by designating and recognizing distinctions in the land such as agricultural land, open lands, regional preserves, parks and trails, as well as distinct landscapes, forest land, ecosystems, water-sheds, ridge lines, wildlife, wetlands…and to encourage development that respects these critical areas.”

 

In order to protect the existing environmental features that the RLUP seeks to protect, staff offers the following recommendations:

·  The applicant should move lot 10 and perhaps lot 11 further away from the cottonwood trees on the eastern edge of Bubbles Lake.  DOW recommends a ¼ mile buffer for a red-tailed hawk’s nest.  This buffer may be larger than the applicant can accommodate, so the buffer should be as large as possible.

·  Building envelopes should be placed on Lots 1-9 near the road that provides access to the lots to provide additional buffer space to the cottonwood trees located along the western edge of Bubbles Lake.

 

Larimer County Parks and Open Lands has reviewed this application and has no comments at this time.

·  Fees for regional parks are assessed on all new residential developments in Larimer County.

·  The fee amount depends on the type of structure being built.

·  Park fees are collected by the building department at the time of building permit issuance.

·  Please note that fee amounts may vary over time.  The building department will collect the park fee that is in effect on the date the building permit is issued.

 

Department of the Army—Corps of Engineers:   If any work associated with this project requires the placement of dredged or fill material, and any excavation associated with a dredged or fill project, either temporary or permanent, in waters of the United States at this site, this office should be notified by a proponent of the project for proper Department of the Army permits or changes in permit requirements pursuant to Section 404 of the Clean Water Act.  Waters of the U.S. include ephemeral, intermittent and perennial streams, their surface connected wetlands and adjacent wetlands and certain lakes, ponds, drainage ditches and irrigation ditches that have a nexus to interstate commerce.

Work in waters of the U.S. should be shown on a map identifying the Quarter Section, Township, Range and County of the work and the dimensions of work in each area of waters of the U.S.

Staff finds that this proposal is consistent with the policies of Section 5.8—Rural Land Use Process of the Larimer County Land Use Code.   Support for the Keller Ranch Preliminary Rural Land Plan is based on the following:

·  Applicant’s planning and design rationale for the project, which is consistent with the RLUP.

·  Conservation values of the residual land, including perpetual preservation of irrigated crop land, grazing land, open space and wildlife habitat.

·  The plan is generally compatible with the existing neighboring land uses.

 

Support for this proposed plan takes into consideration the various other land development and design options, particularly the 35-acre alternative, for which there is no County review.  The greater number of residential units possible under the zoning and the general development pressure within the immediate area for use-by-right 35-acre division of land supports our belief that this is an appropriate project.

As proposed, this project will also provide commensurate long-term benefits to citizens of Larimer County.  Those benefits are summarized below:

·  Perpetual protection of residual land.

·  Transportation capital expansion fees received from the project.

·  School and park fees received from the project.

·  Fewer residences than likely allowed through subdivision process.

·  Ability to influence design of project, as compared to use-by-right division of property into 35-acre parcels.

 

This project was reviewed by the Rural Land Use Advisory Board on October 17, 2005.  The RLUAB unanimously recommended approval of the project.   The Rural Land Use Director recommends that the Board of County Commissioners approve the Rural Land Plan.  The following contingencies must be met prior to approval of Final Plat by the Board of County Commissioners:

 

1.   The Final Plat shall be consistent with the approved preliminary plan and with the information contained in the Keller Ranch Rural Land Plan (File # 05-S2435) except as modified by the conditions of approval or agreement of the County and applicant.  The applicant shall be subject to all other verbal or written representations and commitments of record for the Keller Ranch Rural Land Plan.

2.   All roads constructed within the Rural Land Plan shall be in accordance with Section 5.8.6.D of the Rural Land Use Process.  All designs must be prepared and stamped by a qualified professional engineer licensed in the State of Colorado and certified that design standards in 5.8.6.D. were followed, before final approval.  Internal roads may be contained in a private access and utility easement.  Road names and addressing shall meet standards in the “Road Naming and Site Addressing System Resolution”.

3.   An on-lot well already exists for Residual Lot D and public water shall be provided for the remaining lots.  A letter of commitment from the water provider must be provided prior to Final Plat approval.  This letter of commitment must specifically state that the water distribution system is (or will be) designed to meet the normal and minimum pressure design standards contained in Section 8.1.2.A.1 of the Land Use Code or more stringent standards as required by the District.  If the water system will be designed to provide fire protection, the letter of commitment also must address the pressure and delivery standards outlined in Section 8.1.4 of the Land Use Code.

4.   Preliminary soil testing prior to Final Plat review shall be performed to determine suitability for on-site septic systems.  Test results shall be reviewed and approved by the Health Department, prior to Final Plat approval.

5.   Building envelopes shall be placed on each lot.  All building envelopes shall be located outside the floodplain and drainage areas and shall meet minimum setback requirements listed in the Larimer County Land Use Code.  The building envelopes for Lots 1-9 shall be located so that all construction will be at least 300 feet from the historic high-water line of the reservoir. 

6.   Automatic fire protection sprinklers will be required for all new residential structures or written permission for variance from this requirement from the fire district.

7.   The residual land protective covenant and use plans (including grazing practices, flash grazing protocols, weed control, and management of the Bubbles Lake wetland and wildlife habitat area) must be reviewed and approved by the County Attorney and the RLUC Director prior to Final Plat approval. 

8.   No exterior residential construction on Lots 10-12 or road construction in the vicinity of Lots 10-12 will be allowed from March 1 through June 15 (the typical raptor nesting period). 

9.   Restrictive covenants, including provisions for internal road maintenance, small acreage management, architectural guidelines, and other requirements must be reviewed and approved by the Rural Land Use Center Director prior to Final Plat approval.

10.   The final development agreement must be reviewed and approved by the County Attorney prior to Final Plat approval.

11.   A Lot Sale Prohibition shall be placed on this property preventing the sale of any new lots until the applicable improvements (i.e., legal access and public utilities, including but not limited to water supply, electricity, and telephone facilities) have been completed and/or installed according to the project requirements.  The lots cannot be sold, transferred or conveyed unless and until Developer provides written designation stating whether the improvements have been completed for the lot proposed to be sold, transferred or conveyed.  The Lot Sale Prohibition will be recorded in the records of the Larimer County Clerk and Recorder and will be a covenant running with the Lots.  Upon receipt of such written designation, County will provide to Developers a release of the Lot Sale Prohibition for the particular lot(s) for which the improvements have been completed. 

12.   Applicants will engage in good faith discussion to resolve the North Poudre Irrigation Company concerns.

13.   The following must be listed as a note on the Final Plat and on a disclosure statement, approved by the County Attorney, available to lot buyers through the public records at the time of purchase: 

a)   LOT SALE PROHIBITION.  Developers have executed a Lot Sale Prohibition Agreement which stipulates that Lots 1 through 14 and/or Residual Lot(s)A through G cannot be sold, transferred or conveyed unless and until Developers provide to County a written designation stating that all the applicable improvements (i.e., legal access and public utilities, including but not limited to water supply, electricity, and telephone facilities) have been completed and/or installed according to the project requirements.  The lots cannot be sold, transferred or conveyed unless and until Developer provides written designation stating whether the improvements have been completed for the lot proposed to be sold, transferred or conveyed.  The Lot Sale Prohibition is recorded in the records of the Larimer County Clerk and Recorder and is a covenant running with the Lots.  Upon receipt of such written designation, County will provide to Developers a release of the Lot Sale Prohibition for particular lot(s) for which the improvements have been completed. 

b)   The construction of any single-family residence in this development will require the installation of residential fire sprinklers if fire hydrants and/or a public water supply are not present to provide fire protection unless written permission for variance from this requirement from the fire district is received.

c)    Passive radon mitigation measures shall be included in construction of structures designed for habitable space on these lots.  The results of a radon detection test conducted in new dwellings once the structure is enclosed but prior to issuance of a certificate of occupancy shall be submitted to the Building Department.  As an alternative, a builder may present a prepaid receipt from a radon tester which specifies that a test will be done within 30 days.  A permanent certificate of occupancy can be issued when the prepaid receipt is submitted.

d)   Some or all lots in this development include building envelopes.  All structures must be located within these Larimer County approved building envelopes, as shown on the approved Plan.  If a structure within the building envelope is located 5’ or less from the boundary of the building envelope, the owner/applicant for a building permit will be required to demonstrate that the structure(s) is located within the building envelope prior to the approval of the footing and foundation inspection.  This shall be accomplished by a written certification by a Colorado Licensed Surveyor.

e)   All structures and septic systems must be located within the building envelopes on any Residual Lots.

f)   Engineered footings and foundations may be required for new habitable construction. Please check with the Larimer County Building Department for requirements prior to submitting a building permit application.

g)   Lot owners should be advised that there is a potential for nuisance conflicts from wildlife (such as skunks, mountain lions, bears, raccoons, foxes, coyotes, prairie dogs and snakes).  The Colorado Division of Wildlife can provide information to property owners about how to handle these situations, but lot owners are responsible for addressing wildlife conflicts if they arise.

h)   Many other species of wildlife live in the area; some can be dangerous to humans and pets.  It must be remembered that landowners will be living with wildlife.  Species that may be found in the area are coyotes, mountain lions, bobcats, skunks, badgers, raccoons, deer, elk, hawks, owls and eagles.

i)   Pets must be contained on property, either by leash or enclosure.

j)   During certain times of the year mosquitoes may present a significant nuisance.  Larimer County does not have a mosquito abatement program.  Any mosquito abatement activity will be the responsibility of the homeowner; such activity must be according to applicable Federal, State and local rules and regulations.

k)   Prairie dog colonies exist in the general area; prairie dogs can be a nuisance if they migrate to developed residential property.  At times these animals are implicated in the transmission of plague to people or their pets.  It is important for residents to observe animal control requirements for dogs and cats.

l)   Agricultural operations and farming practices on adjacent properties can produce odors, noise and dust.  These are a normal part of agriculture and should be expected to occur.  In addition, plowing, planting, cultivating, spraying, harvesting, and various livestock operations may be carried out at all times including nighttime.

m)   If livestock will be kept on these lots, it will be important to carefully manage grazing in order to maintain grass cover in the pasture.  Overgrazing will produce bare ground, weeds, erosion and polluted runoff.  Management of these lots should be coordinated with drainage and erosion control issues, siting of sanitation systems, fencing and feeding.

n)   Larimer County has adopted a Right to Farm Resolution.

o)   The following fees shall be collected at building permit issuance for new single-family dwellings: Poudre R-1 school fees, Larimer County fees for County and Regional Transportation Capital Expansion, Larimer County Park Fees (in lieu of dedication), and Rural Land Use Process fees.  The fee amount that is current at time of building permit application shall apply.

p)   Larimer County shall not maintain roads or streets in this development.  Maintenance of the streets shall be the responsibility of the property owners.  Failure to maintain streets may result in a lien being placed on these lots.

 

Mr. Reidhead presented photos of the property and briefly described the project as outlined above.   John Barnett, representative for the applicant, explained the placement of the proposed home sites, noting that one home site has been earmarked as a horse property.  Mr. Barnett stated that they realized the importance of preserving the wildlife habitats and stated that they are working with the Department of Wildlife to achieve this goal. 

Chair Rennels opened up the hearing for public comment.  Joann Blehm, adjoining landowner, stated her objections to the proposal.  Ms. Blehm expressed concern that the wildlife in the area would be jeopardized.  Ms. Blehm also noted that the noxious weeds in the area will need to be controlled and stated that County Road 13 is a rather dangerous road that should be dealt with.  Brad Pherson, adjoining neighbor, asked for clarification as to where the access point on County Road 13 would be.  Steven Smith, Manager for the North Poudre Irrigation Company, explained the history of Bubbles Lake and noted that the irrigation company maintains a perpetual right-of-way to the lake for maintenance purposes.  Mr. Smith stated that he does not see anything in this proposal that addresses the North Poudre Irrigation Company's perpetual right-of-way, and expressed concern that the applicant has not engaged him in discussions regarding this.  There was no further public comment.

Mr. Barnett explained that they plan to conduct substantial and extensive education on wildlife preservation.  He noted that they did not approach the North Poudre Irrigation Company sooner because they did not have a firm plan, but stated that they have a meeting scheduled with them at 10:00 a.m. the following morning, and will negotiate in good faith with the irrigation company. 

Ms. Blehm addressed the Board noting that she is a stockholder in the North Poudre Irrigation Company, and commended them for their efforts.

The Board agreed to support the application with the condition that the applicant engage in discussions with the North Poudre Irrigation Company to resolve their concerns.

M O T I O N

Commissioner Gibson moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the Keller Ranch Preliminary Rural Land Plan subject to the conditions recommended by the Rural Land Use Center Director, and the addition of the following condition which has been added as condition number 12 above:  Applicants will engage in good faith discussions to resolve the North Poudre Irrigation Company concerns.

Motion carried 3-0.

The hearing recessed at 5:10 p.m.

 

LAND USE HEARING

(#128 & 129)

 

The Board of County Commissioners reconvened at 6:30 p.m. with Rusty McDaniel, Assistant County Engineer.  Chair Rennels presided and Commissioner Gibson was present.  Also present were:  Dale Miller, Road and Bridge Department; George Hass, County Attorney; and Gael Cookman, Deputy Clerk.

 

1.  CHANGE IN USE OF LARIMER COUNTY ROAD 16 RIGHT-OF-WAY APPEAL:  This is a request for the Board of County Commissioners to approve a change in use to the right-of-way on the section of CR 16 that crosses the dam and spillway for the South Side Reservoir.

Over the last two years, Larimer County and the South Side Reservoir Company have had ongoing discussions regarding the future of Larimer County Road 16 (CR 16) as it crosses over the dam and spillway of the South Side Reservoir.  This subject was originally brought to the attention of the County by the reservoir company as they wrestled with how to accommodate filling their reservoir to its maximum approved storage capacity and, at the same time, comply with requirements of the State Engineer’s office relative to spillway maintenance and elevation control. 

In order to meet both objectives, the reservoir company was charged with the development of a plan to reconstruct and maintain the reservoir spillway in a precisely determined fashion of flow allowance, restriction and height.  It was determined that the only way to accomplish this and keep the road open to vehicular traffic would be to hard surface (pave) the road and adjacent side slopes in the spillway area; however, Larimer County has no immediate or long-range plans to pave or otherwise improve CR 16 in this area.  The most recent traffic counts indicate that this continues to be a low volume road with counts staying relatively at the same level over the last 9 years.  The counts in 1996 were 266 trips per day and 260 trips per day in 2005.  Also of concern is that the cross section templates of approved spillway designs do not effectively match any prudent roadway design criteria.   

In addition, the road width on top of the dam is very narrow and its side slopes so steep that it is not safe for two-way traffic.  The installation of guardrail along the roadsides would compromise spillway capacity and defeat one of the dam safety requirements of the State Engineer.  Widening the road would be very costly and would impact the storage capacity of the reservoir.

During the course of discussions with the Reservoir Company, the subject of road ownership and dedicated road Right-of-Way arose.  Often public roads in the unincorporated County areas exist through a deed of dedication.  In some instances, however, roads exist through “prescriptive rights”.  This term defines more of an evolutionary use and assumption of maintenance by Larimer County.  We believe this to be the only connection to Larimer County for the portion of CR 16 from CR 19 to, and across, the South Side Reservoir spillway and dam.  Given this fact and in consideration of the information presented above, Larimer County would prefer to discontinue maintenance of CR 16 in this localized area. 

Therefore, staff proposes that CR 16 from CR 19 east across the spillway and southerly across the dam to the point at which it resumes an easterly course be permanently closed to public vehicular traffic.  Staff is not proposing to vacate the public right-of-way, only to restrict its use and eliminate maintenance costs.  In addition, the proposal includes the requirement that the South Side Reservoir Company continue to allow the road to exist for public pedestrian, bicycle and equestrian uses in conjunction with their own motorized vehicle use. The Reservoir Company would need to work with any utility companies that have existing utilities in the area to allow for access for maintenance of their facilities.

Staff recognizes that this proposal may impact residents of the area and travelers who regularly use this route; however, given the traffic count data, staff believes the impact to be minimal.  Staff also believes that the timing of this proposal is appropriate and beneficial to any future transportation planning efforts in response to potential land development projects in the area and/or annexations of the City of Loveland. 

In April, 2005, letters were sent to local residents in the area and signs were posted at both ends of the road informing the public of this proposal.  To date, staff has received 45 responses by phone and email.  Of the 45 responses, 33 were in favor of the proposal, 6 would prefer that the road remain open to vehicular traffic but indicated they understood the reasons and would not oppose the proposal, and 6 responded that they were opposed to the proposal.

Staff has received written correspondence from both the City of Loveland Fire Prevention Bureau and the Larimer County Sheriff’s Department.  Both agencies indicated that they do not oppose this request.  The City of Loveland Public Works Department has also been contacted and they do not feel this change in use will have a negative impact on the transportation system in the area.

The Development Services Team findings are as follows:

 

1.   Loveland Rural Fire Department and the Larimer County Sheriff's Department have reviewed the proposed road closure and stated no objections.

2.   The City of Loveland Public Works Department reviewed the proposed change in use and stated no objections.

3.   Residents of the area were notified of this proposal and out of 45 who responded, six were opposed to the change in use.

4.   The South Side Reservoir Company must cooperate with Larimer County and any other public entity or utility to allow them to freely access this section of road to maintain existing utilities or provide for the health, safety, or welfare of the public.

5.   The proposed change will not affect any utility company’s existing rights to maintain or improve their facilities in the area.

6.   It would be in the best interest of the citizens of Larimer County and the South Side Reservoir Company to change the use of this portion of County Road 16 to allow only trail type uses such as bicycles, pedestrian, and horses and no longer allow public vehicular traffic.

 

Staff recommends approval of the proposed change in use for County Road 16 across the dam and spillway of the South Side Reservoir to no longer allow public vehicular use on this section of road.

 

Mr. McDaniel gave a brief explanation of the proposal and displayed photos of the road which depicted where the gates would be placed.  Chair Rennels asked if gating the road would "trap" any homeowners.  Mr. McDaniel showed which homeowners would be most affected, but stated that they would have access to Taft Avenue.  Commissioner Gibson asked if there would still be emergency access available on CR 16.  Mr. McDaniel stated that both the Sheriff's Department and the Fire Department have indicated that they would remove this access from their response maps.  John Whiteside, representative from the South Side Ditch Company, addressed the Board.  Mr. Whiteside stated that they wish to fill the reservoir to capacity, and explained that they would need to narrow the road and reduce the slope to help accomplish this. 

 

Chair Rennels opened up the hearing for public comment.  John Juhasz, Doug Gibson, Carolyn Dobbins, surrounding neighbors, were all were in favor of closing the road due to safety issues, speeding, and the number of oversized vehicles that utilize the road.  Ms. Dobbins also read letters from two other area neighbors that were in favor of closing the road. 

 

Jerry and Shirley Bybee, Carey Ashton, Robert Gross, Peter Bryant, and Art Rodriquez were all opposed to closing the road, as all use the road on a regular basis and believe that the road is safe if driven slowly, and closing the road will cause an inconvenience to the area residents.  There were also concerns that the emergency access will be compromised if the road is closed. Commissioner Gibson also read a letter from John Smethurst, who was also opposed to closing the road.

 

Chair Rennels closed public comment and asked what it would take to install guard rails and how much width of the road would have to be surrendered to do so.  Mr. Miller stated that approximately 2.5 feet on each side of the road would be required to install guard rails, and that the guard rails could only be installed on the dam portion, not on the spillway portion of the road.  Chair Rennels asked how the ditch company will achieve the additional capacity.  Mr. Whiteside stated that they will need to cut into the road to make a larger level area, which in turn will make the road unsafe.  Chair Rennels asked about the likelihood of installing a traffic light on Taft Avenue.  Mr. McDaniel stated that the City of Loveland will be installing a traffic light as development continues in this area, and it may be installed as soon as next spring. 

 

Robert Gross again stated that he travels the road everyday and questioned the improvements there have been made in recent years.  Mr. Miller stated that the road was resurfaced approximately 2 years ago.   Mr. Whiteside stated that the state required them to build up the topside of the reservoir, which has also occurred within the past few years.  Carey Ashton noted that many county roads are not dedicated and only have prescriptive rights of use. 

 

Chair Rennels stated that there is a problem for the ditch company as they cannot achieve their capacity levels as the road is currently situated, and the area residents have become accustomed to the road as a prescriptive right of use.    She asked how much it would cost to improve the road to everyone's satisfaction.  Mr. Miller stated that if they were to improve the road to allow for additional capacity in the reservoir, and make it safe for public use, they would need to acquire land on the non-reservoir side, and would need to conduct a fair amount of earth work.  He estimated is would cost over $100,000 to accomplish this. 

 

M O T I O N

 

Commissioner Gibson moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the proposed change in use for County Road 16 across the dam and spillway of the South Side Reservoir to no longer allow public motorized vehicular use on this section of road.

 

Under discussion of the motion, Chair Rennels asked that staff  pursue the installation of a  traffic light on Taft Avenue, and allow emergency access along the section of County Road 16 that will be closed.

 

Motion carried 2-0.

 

The meeting adjourned at 7:50 p.m.

 

 

Tuesday, December 6, 2005

 

ADMINISTRATIVE MATTERS

(#130)

 

The Board of County Commissioners met at 9:30 a.m. with Assistant County Manager Neil Gluckman.  Chair Rennels presided and Commissioners Wagner and Gibson were present.  Also present were:  Deni LaRue and Donna Hart, Commissioners’ Office; Kate Tremblay, Risk Management; Rob Helmick, Planning; Gary Buffington, K-Lynn Cameron and Ernst Strenge, Parks and Open Lands; Jerry White, Kyle Arend, and Rusty McDaniel; Engineering; Marc Engemoen, Public Works; George Hass, County Attorney; and Angela Myers, Deputy Clerk.

 

1.  PUBLIC COMMENT:  There was no public comment.  The Board previewed the Commissioner video that will soon be aired on Channel 14 in Fort Collins and Channel 16 in Loveland.

 

2.  APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES FOR THE WEEK OF NOVEMBER 21, 2005:

 

M O T I O N

 

Commissioner Wagner moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the minutes for the week of November 21, 2005, as presented.

 

Motion carried 3-0.

 

3.  REVIEW THE SCHEDULE FOR THE WEEK OF DECEMBER 12, 2005:  Ms. Hart reviewed the upcoming schedule with the Board.

 

4. CONSENT AGENDA:

 

M O T I O N

 

Commissioner Gibson moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the following items as presented on the Consent Agenda for December 6, 2005:

 

12062005A001           WARRANTY MEMORANDUM FOR PUBLIC IMPROVEMENTS TO COUNTY ROAD 16H AS PART OF THE BLACKBIRD KNOLLS SECOND SUBDIVISION, A CITY OF LOVELAND DEVELOPMENT BETWEEN THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF LARIMER COUNTY AND CENTEX HOMES

 

12062005A002           AMENDMENT NUMBER TWO (2) TO THE SUBCONTRACT BY AND BETWEEN THE REGENTS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF COLORADO, ON BEHALF OF THE UNIVERSITY OF COLORADO AT DENVER AND HEALTH SCIENCES CENTER AND LARIMER COUNTY WORKFORCE CENTER

 

12062005A003           SITE LEASE AGREEMENT BY AND BETWEEN GCR ELECTRONICS, LLC AND BCC OF LARIMER, COLORADO

 

12062005A004           DEVELOPMENT AGREEMENT AND RESIDUAL LAND USE RESTRICTIONS FOR WILD VALLEY NORTH R.L.U.P. BETWEEN THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF LARIMER COUNTY; AND GREGORY WILD AND THE WILD VALLEY NORTH HOMEOWNERS ASSOCIATION

 

12062005A005           ADDENDUM TO CHAPLAIN SERVICE AGREEMENT PROPOSAL NUMBER: 04-13 BETWEEN THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF LARIMER COUNTY AND FREEDOM FELLOWSHIP

 

12062005A006           AGREEMENT BY AND BETWEEN THE STATE OF COLORADO, FOR THE USE AND BENEFIT OF THE COLORADO DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION, OFFICE OF TRANSPORTATION SAFETY AND THE LARIMER COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE

 

12062005R001           FINDINGS AND RESOLUTION APPROVING THE BUILDING ENVELOPE CORRECTION IN MARY’S LAKE ESTATES SUBDIVISION

 

12062005R002           FINDINGS AND RESOLUTION APPROVING THE KINARD JUNIOR HIGH SCHOOL MINOR LAND DIVISION

 

12062005R003           FINDINGS AND RESOLUTION APPROVING THE VACATION OF PUBLIC UTILITY EASEMENT

 

12062005R004           FINDINGS AND RESOLUTION APPROVING THE AMENDED PLAT OF LOTS 17 AND 44 IN THE THUNDER MOUNTAIN PARK PLANNED UNIT DEVELOPMENT

 

12062005R005           FINDINGS AND RESOLUTION APPROVING THE ROCKY POINT PRELIMINARY CONDOMINIUM PLAT MAP

 

12062005R006           FINDINGS AND RESOLUTION APPROVING THE ROCKY POINT FINAL CONDOMINIUM PLAT MAP

 

12062005R007           FINDINGS AND RESOLUTION APPROVING THE STAPLES MINOR RESIDENTIAL DEVELOPMENT LOT 2 EASEMENT VACATION

 

12062005R008           FINDINGS AND RESOLUTION APPROVING THE EXTENSION OF THE WAGNER RURAL LAND USE PLAN PRELIMINARY PLAT APPROVAL

 

12062005R009           FINDINGS AND RESOLUTION APPROVING THE HOPKINS MINOR LAND DIVISION

 

12062005R010           FINDINGS AND RESOLUTION APPROVING THE CHAPMAN-DUFFIELD MINOR LAND DIVISION

 

12062005R011           FINDINGS AND RESOLUTION APPROVING THE NYTES REZONING

 

12062005R012           RESOLUTION ADOPTING AMENDMENTS TO THE LARIMER COUNTY LAND USE CODE

 

12062005R013           RESOLUTION CONCERNING ELECTION ON REFERRED ISSUE 1A

 

12062005R014           RESOLUTION FOR EXPENDITURE FROM OPEN SPACE SALES FUNDS TO ASSIST THE ESTES VALLEY LAND TRUST IN THE PURCHASE OF THE COHEN CONSERVATION EASEMENT

 

12062005R015           SUPPLEMENT TO THE FINDINGS AND RESOLUTION APPROVING THE WILD VALLEY NORTH PRELIMINARY RURAL LAND PLAN

 

12062005R016           RESOLUTION FOR STATUTORY VESTED RIGHTS FOR WILD VALLEY NORTH RURAL LAND PLAN 03-S2076

 

MISCELLANEOUS DOCUMENTS:  Hopkins Minor Land Division; Final Plat for Wild Valley north R.L.U.P. 03-S2076; Disability Program Navigator Modification; Amendment No. 4 Larimer County Contributory Retirement Plan.

 

LIQUOR LICENSES:  The following licenses were approved and issued:  Windjammer Liquors, Loveland – Retail Liquor Store; Sylvan Dale Ranch, Loveland – Hotel and Restaurant with Optional Premise.  The following licenses were issued:  Ptarmigan Country Club, Fort Collins – Hotel and Restaurant with Optional Premise; Western Ridge Restaurant and Resort, Livermore – Hotel and Restaurant; Swing Station, LaPorte – Tavern.

 

Motion carried 3-0.

 

5.  MODIFY POLICY 390.7, LARIMER COUNTY INSURANCE PROGRAM, TO INCLUDE A SECTION REGARDING USE OF CELL PHONES WHILE DRIVING ON COUNTY BUSINESSKate Tremblay provided for the Board a history of the proposed policy and how it has evolved into its current form.  Discussion ensued regarding personal versus County cell phones and applicability to personal versus County vehicles in use for County business. 

 

Commissioner Gibson asked if this policy is being prompted by a specific problem or incident that the County has experienced.  Ms. Tremblay indicated that there have not been specific instances, perhaps because information regarding cell phone use is not collected when accidents occur during County business.  She explained that Risk Management is making every effort to be proactive with respect to potential risks, and studies indicate that cell phone usage while driving can be more dangerous than alcohol usage.  Commissioner Gibson indicated his reluctance to create new rules when history had not actually indicated that the County is having a problem with this issue.

 

Chair Rennels asked about the State’s policy regarding cell phone use.  Ms. Tremblay indicated that the State does not have a policy regarding this issue at this time.  Discussion ensued regarding the difference between of hands-free and hands-on cell phone use.  Ms. Tremblay quoted statistics on accidents attributable to the distraction of cell phone use while driving.  Discussion continued regarding traffic issues in Larimer County versus other, more congested parts of the country and conversation in general while driving.  Discussion continued regarding the reasons County employees are issued cell phones and the affect the proposed restrictions could potentially have on productivity.

 

Chair Rennels suggested that hands-free equipment be provided to County employees driving County vehicles and that training on how to use cell phones responsibly be considered, rather than the adoption of the proposed policy.   Discussion ensued regarding the use of personal cell phones while driving on County business and how cell phone use policies could and would be policed.

 

The Board unanimously agreed not to make a decision regarding this policy.  Instead, Ms. Tremblay was directed to modify the proposed policy to one that indicates hands-free equipment will be provided for cell phone use in County vehicles; employees can have cell phone conversations while driving (but should be encouraged to keep such conversations brief); and phone records will be reviewed if an employee is in an accident while on County business.

 

6.  APPOINTMENTS TO THE ESTES VALLEY PUBLIC LIBRARY:  Neil Gluckman explained that the Estes Valley Public Library District Board of Trustees is recommending Diane Jordan and Bruce Brown be appointed to the Estes Valley Public Library District for a four-year term, ending December 31, 2009.

 

M O T I O N

 

Commissioner Wagner moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the request by the Estes Valley Board of Trustees to appoint Diane Jordan and Bruce Brown to the Estes Valley Public Library District for a four-year term effective January 1, 2006, and terminating December 31, 2009.

 

Motion carried 3-0.

 

7.  COMMISSIONER ACTIVITY REPORTS:  The Board noted their attendance at events during the past week. 

 

8.  DETERMINATION REGARDING PLANNING COMMISSION REVIEW OF AN APPEAL TO SECTION 5.3.2.h OF THE LARIMER COUNTY LAND USE CODE:  Rob Helmick explained that John Hanna has submitted an appeal to the Land Use Code requirement that all parcels over 30 acres may only be divided through the Conservation Development Process.  The Appeals section of the Code requires that the Board of County Commissioners decide if an appeal should be reviewed by the Planning Commission or not.  This request is to determine whether this appeal requires Planning Commission review and comment; it is not a decision on the appeal itself (which will be scheduled for hearing within the 60-day time limit).  Mr. Helmick went on to explain why it is being suggested that Planning Commission review is not necessary.

 

M O T I O N

 

Commissioner Gibson moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve proceeding to a hearing with the Board of County Commissioners without Planning Commission review and comment.

 

Motion carried 3-0.

 

9.   APPROVE THE COMMITMENT OF FINANCIAL SUPPORT FOR THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE BISON ARROYO SECTION OF THE POUDRE RIVER TRAIL:  Ernst Strenge explained that, if financial commitment is approved, the Bison Arroyo Section of the Poudre River Trail will be constructed between County Line Road (Weld County Road 13) to the southeast and State Highway 392 to the northwest and will consist of approximately 5380 feet of trail construction.  This section of trail occurs within the town of Windsor along or near the south bank of the Cache la Poudre River and is entirely within Larimer County.  Larimer County’s River Bluffs Regional Open Space occurs to the north across State Highway 392.  The trail easement for the Bison Arroyo Section was donated to the Town of Windsor by the River West P.U.D. Community Association.

 

In the Larimer County Open Lands Master Plan (2001), the Lower Poudre River, between Timnath and Windsor and including the Bison Arroyo section, was identified as a priority trail corridor.  This regional trail corridor was also selected as one of the top seven priority trails during the recent trails prioritization exercise conducted by the Open Lands Advisory Board.  The Bison Arroyo section will be the first section of off-street trail constructed in Larimer County along the lower Poudre River.

 

Commissioner Gibson expressed concern regarding the fact that this extension of the trail will create a dead-end situation where the trail meets Highway 392 and asked about the plan to provide access from the trail to the highway.  Discussion ensued regarding the history of this connection, future highway construction planned by CDOT at this interchange and why this quarter-mile extension to the trail is so valuable.

 

K-Lynn Cameron emphasized that Parks and Open Lands will, based on the Commissioner’s concern, make every effort to ensure Highway 392 is not a “stumbling block” for the trail.  She said that, although the situation at that location cannot be resolved at this time, it will be made a priority going forward.

 

M O T I O N

 

Commissioner Wagner moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the commitment of financial support in the amount of $206,750 to Poudre River Trail Corridor, Inc. for the construction of the Bison Arroyo section of the Poudre River Trail.

 

Motion carried 3-0.

 

10.  APPROVE DOCUMENTS TO THE EAGLE’S NEST OPEN SPACE:  Gary Buffington explained that the Larimer County Open Lands Program purchased the 755-acre Eagle’s Nest Open Space in 2001.  The portion of the ranch retained by the seller (550 acres) is now in the process of being purchased by a new owner.  Three “loose ends” require resolution prior to the December 8, 2005, closing on that property and include:

 

            a)  Termination of the County’s Right of First Refusal on the 550 acres.

b) The original Deed to the County on the 755 acres was based upon a GPS legal description.  When the survey was completed after closing, there were minor discrepancies with the GPS description.  By executing reciprocal deeds based on the survey description, the boundaries of the two parcels are more precise and consistent with the survey markers and new fencing.

c) When the County made improvements to the access road to the Open Space parking area, the access leading to Mr. Avis’ house was relocated about 50 feet to the east.  This necessitates that the County grant Mr. Avis an access easement which reflects the road relocation.

 

M O T I O N

 

Commissioner Gibson moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the following three documents related to Eagle’s Nest Open Space:

 

TERMINATION OF RIGHT OF FIRST REFUSAL

 

12062005A007           GRANT OF EASEMENT AND AGREEMENT BY AND BETWEEN COUNTY OF LARIMER AND EAGLE’S NEST OF COLORADO, LLC AND EAGLE’S NEST OF AMERICA LLC

 

12062005R017           RESOLUTION FOR CONVEYANCE BY BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF LARIMER COUNTY AND BARGAIN AND SELL DEED TO EAGLE’S NEST OF COLORADO LLC AND EAGLE’S NEST OF AMERICA, LLC


Motion carried 3-0.

 

11.  WORKSESSION:  Mr. Gluckman discussed in detail the process for determining the division of responsibilities for the Board in the coming year.  Discussion ensued among the Board and all members agreed to follow the process suggested.

 

12.  LEGAL MATTERS:  There were no legal matters to discuss.

 

13.  EXECUTIVE SESSION:  (Tape #131)

 

M O T I O N

 

Commissioner Wagner moved that the Board of County Commissioners go into Executive Session for the purpose of purchase acquisition, lease, transfer or sale of any real or personal property interest per 24-6-402(4)(a) C.R.S.

 

Motion carried 3-0.

 

The meeting adjourned at 10:40 a.m., with no further action taken.

 

 

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 8, 2005

 

SPECIAL MEETING OF THE

BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS

(No audio available)

 

The Board of County Commissioners met at 10:00 a.m. with Kathy Snell, Health and Human Service Director.  Chair Pro Tem Gibson presided and Commissioner Wagner was present.  Commissioner Rennels attended via teleconference.  Also present were:  Richard Guest, Health and Human Services Department; and Gael Cookman, Deputy Clerk.

 

Mr. Guest requested Board approval on a Federal Transit Grant Application, in the hopes of hiring a .5 FTE to explore transit needs and conduct research, particularly regarding rural county needs.  He explained that the grant request is for $57,654, and the County will provide a matching contribution of $19,296 (in-kind services).  Ms. Snell stated that they received short notice of these funds being available, and that the application needs to at the Colorado of Transportation by December 9, 2005, at 5:00 p.m. 

 

M O T I O N

Commissioner Rennels moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the Federal Transit Grant Application for the Health and Human Services Department as presented.

Motion carried 3-0.

The meeting adjourned at 10:10 a.m.

 

 

 

    __________________________________________

                                    KATHAY RENNELS, CHAIR

            BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS

 

SCOTT DOYLE

CLERK AND RECORDER

 

ATTEST:

 

___________________________________

Gael M. Cookman, Deputy Clerk     

 

 

___________________________________

Angela Myers, Deputy Clerk