Elk in Rocky Mountain National Park
 

MINUTES OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS

 

 

Monday, May 12, 2014

 

LAND USE HEARING

 

The Board of County Commissioners met at 3:00 p.m. with Matt Lafferty, Principal Planner. Chair Donnelly presided and Commissioners Johnson and Gaiter were present. Also present were: Rob Helmick, Karin Madson, and Brenda Gimeson, Planning Department; Traci Shambo, Engineering Department; Doug Ryan, Environmental Health Department; Jeannine Haag, County Attorney’s Office; and Gael Cookman, Deputy Clerk.

 

Chair Donnelly opened the hearing with the Pledge of Allegiance.  Mr. Lafferty then requested that the Board add item #8 to the consent agenda, as long as no one in the audience was in attendance to address the Board on this item.  Chair Donnelly ensured there was no opposition to this request by the Board or members of the audience.  Seeing none; item #8 was moved to the consent agenda as well.  Some discussion then ensued regarding item #7 and whether or not the utility companies needed to be contacted prior to vacating the easement; however, the Board and staff ultimately agreed that the conditions were appropriate, as written.

 

1.         LEFLAR MINOR LAND DIVISION TRACTS 1 & 2 AMENDED PLAT, FILE#14-S3222:    This is a request to amend the property boundary lines between Tracts 1 and 2 of the Leflar MRD. 

These properties are located in the Leflar MRD, located southeast of Fort Collins, east of the Timberline/Trilby Intersection on Silver Mist Lane.  The Leflar MRD was recorded in April, 1993.  This property is currently zoned FA-1 and that will remain the same.  Both lots are owned by the same person.  This application is requesting a reconfiguration of the lot lines to accommodate an existing fence line that creates a narrow strip of land with limited use.  The smallest lot is 7.5 acres and with the reconfiguration will be 5 acres in size but this is still larger than the minimum lot size allowed by zoning which is 2.3 acres.  There are no proposed changes in the existing access or drainage. 

The following agencies have provided comments or verbally indicated they have no comments to the proposal:

·   The Larimer County Department of Health and Environment

·   The Larimer County Engineering Department

·   The Larimer County Addressing Coordinator

·   The Larimer County Land Surveyor

 

All the affected utility companies have agreed to the request stating no conflict.  The County Land Surveyor and Planning staff has indicated there are some corrections needed to the final plat.  See condition # 2. 

The proposed Amended Plat of Tracts 1 and 2, Leflar MRD reconfiguring the lot lines will not result in any additional lots.  The staff finds that the request meets the requirements of the Larimer County Land Use Code with the conditions as outlined below.

The Development Services Team recommends Approval of the Amended Plat of Tracts 1 and 2, Leflar MRD, File # 14-S3222, to reconfigure the lots subject to the following conditions and authorization for the chairman 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 November 12, 2014, or this approval shall be null and void.

 

2.   Prior to the recordation of the Final Plat the applicant shall make the technical corrections required by County Planning Staff and Brian Helminiak, Land Surveyor of the Larimer County Engineering Department.

 

3.   The reconfiguration of the lots lines shall be finalized at such time when the plat and findings and resolution of the County Commissioners are recorded. 

 

2.         AMENDMENTS TO THE LARIMER COUNTY LAND USE CODE – HOUSEKEEPING ITEMS, FILE #14-CA0141:    This is a request to make several housekeeping changes to the zoning table, Section 01., 5.8.5.B.1.b., 4.3.2.1., Table 12.3.1., 5.13.1, 4.3.10.I.2.f.,9.5.6.C.2., 9.6.7.C.2., and 15.1.1.

These proposed housekeeping amendments were presented to the Planning Commission on April 16, 2014.  There was no public comment or discussion.

 

The Planning Commission recommends to the Board of County Commissioners approval of the Amendment to the Larimer County Land Use Code, file #14-CA0141, subject to the following conditions:

1.    Delete the following Category/Use combination from the zoning table(redundant):

Category

Use

Industrial

General Commercial

Industrial

Outdoor Display and Sales

 

2.   Add “S” to the zoning table under the “AP” column as follows:

Category

Use

AP

Commercial

Outdoor Display and Sales

S

 

3.    Modify the Section 0.1 Definition of Community Development Director as follows:

Community Development Director. The person appointed by the County Commissioners to head the Community Development Division, including the term Planning Director and Rural Land Use Center Director as referenced in this code and those persons designated to act in his/her stead.

4.   Modify Section 5.8.5.B.1.b. as follows:

Director of the Rural Land Use Center (RLUC director): The RLUC director will be a designated staff person in the planning and building services division and will report to and be under the immediate supervision of the director of planning. The RLUC director will be responsible for administering and enforcing the rural land use process.

 

5.   Add “S” under the B,C,I columns (in addition to “SP”)

Category

Use

B

C

I

Institutional

Community Hall

SP/S

SP/S

SP/S

 

6.   Clarify language used in Section 4.3.2.I. 

4.3.2. I. Storage buildings and garages on vacant lots. Prior to the construction of a single family dwelling each lot may include a storage building or garage for the purpose of storing personal property of the lot owner. All storage must be inside the storage building or garage. No residential, business or commercial activities are permitted in these buildings unless approved by the County Commissioners through the special exception, special review or minor special review processes. On lots of less than two acres (net area) these buildings may not exceed 800 square feet. On lots of two to five acres (net area) these buildings may not exceed 2,400 square feet. On lots over five acres (net area) there is no limit to the size of these buildings.   In no event shall the total square footage ground floor area of detached storage buildings and garages exceed ten percent of the net area of any lot. Only those buildings that are designed, constructed and approved by the Larimer County Building Department as storage buildings or garages may be used for this purpose. Manufactured homes, including pre-1974 mobile homes, cannot be used as storage buildings or garages. 

 

7.   Correct the “Easement Vacation” portion of Table 12.3.1. as follows:

Type of Hearing

Published Notice**

APO Notice**

Sign Posted**

Easement Vacations

14 days

14 days N/A

N/A

 

8.   Correct a spelling error in Section 5.13.1. as follows:

The purpose of the land division process is to promote the health, safety, morals, convenience, prosperity and welfare of county residents by approving only those development proposals that are consistent with the guiding principals principles and strategies of the master plan and the standards and requirements of this Code.

 

9.   Modify Section 4.3.10.I.2.f. to reflect current procedure as follows:

Note:  Permits issued under this subsection are effective for such period of time as the county commissioners determine is appropriate based on the particular hardship after considering all the information presented at the public hearing. The county commissioners may not extend the permit may be extended administratively for additional three-year periods, provided the conditions noted in subsection 2. below continue to exist. without a public hearing and finding that standards above continue to be met.

 

10.   Modify Section 9.5.6.C.2. as follows:

During the month of February of each year, the The fees in the road fee schedule shall be updated annually by the fee administrator to reflect changes in road construction costs during the previous year. The updated fees shall become effective on the first day of April July. To calculate an updated fee, each fee in the road fee schedule shall be multiplied by a ratio, the numerator of which is the annual two-year eight quarter moving average in the Colorado Construction Cost Index Report prepared by the Colorado Department of Transportation and the denominator of which is the same index for a period one year earlier than the numerator. If the ratio is less than, or equal to 1.05, the fees in the road fee schedule shall be updated by the fee administrator without further action by the county commissioners. If the ratio is greater than 1.05, the fee administrator shall report the ratio to the county commissioners, and the county commissioners shall determine the ratio that shall be used to update the fees. All obligations to pay the non-regional road capital expansion fee shall apply to the most recent update of the fees in the road fee schedule.

 

11.   Modify Section 9.6.7.C.2. as follows:

During the month of February of each year, the The fees in the road fee schedule shall be updated annually by the fee administrator to reflect changes in road construction costs during the previous year. The updated fees shall become effective on the first day of April  July. To calculate an updated fee, each fee in the road fee schedule shall be multiplied by a ratio, the numerator of which is the annual two-year 8 quarter moving average in the Colorado Construction Cost Index Report prepared by the Colorado Department of Transportation and the denominator of which is the same index for a period one year earlier than the numerator. If the ratio is less than, or equal to 1.05, the fees in the road fee schedule shall be updated by the fee administrator without further action by the county commissioners. If the ratio is greater than 1.05, the fee administrator shall report the ratio to the county commissioners, and the county commissioners shall determine the ratio that shall be used to update the fees. All obligations to pay the regional road capital expansion fee shall apply to the most recent update of the fees shown in the road fee schedule.

 

12.   Modify Section 15.1.1.A., B., D. and E. as follows:

15.1.1. - Supplementary engineering regulations.

A. Larimer County Rural Area Road Standards adopted November 20, 2006 updated October 22, 2007 .

B. Larimer County Urban Area Street Standards. Repealed and reenacted October 1, 2002 April 1, 2007

D. Larimer County Access Policy. Adopted April 8, 1987.

E. Larimer County Right-of-Way Permit Application and Construction Guidelines. Adopted January 19, 1999.

F C . LaPorte Plan Area Access Control and Roadway Design. Adopted February 23, 2004.

 

3.         AMENDMENTS TO THE LARIMER COUNTY LAND USE CODE – BUILDINGS 120 SQUARE FEET OR LESS, FILE #14-CA0142:   This is a request to add a new Section 4.9.2.E.  Detached Accessory Building 120 square feet in area or less.

These proposed Land Use Code amendments were presented to the Planning Commission on April 16, 2014.  Many properties within Larimer County have sheds and other small accessory buildings in their rear or side yards.  Many of these buildings were located such that they didn’t meet required building setbacks.  The purpose of the code amendment was to bring many of those structures into compliance, while maintaining minimum safety and access requirements.   Building permits were not typically required if the structure was 120 sq. ft. in area or less and met other building requirements.  There was no public comment or discussion.

 

The Planning Commission recommend to the Board of County Commissioners approval of the Amendment to the Larimer County Land Use Code, file #14-CA0142, by adding Section 4.9.2.E. and renumber the balance of the section as follows:

 

E. Detached Accessory Building 120 square feet in area or less. Detached accessory buildings may be placed within the rear or side setbacks of a lot as long as the following requirements are met:

1.   The accessory building must maintain a distance of five feet from all lot lines (including eaves, etc.). 

2.   All other required setbacks, including those from highways, county roads, and stream, creeks and river, apply.

3.   The building is not on a permanent foundation,

4.   The average roof height does not exceed 12 feet.

5.   The building is not used for any type of commercial or residential purpose.

6.   No part of any building may extend into or above any easement.

7.   The accessory building may be located outside a building envelope unless restricted to the building envelope as part of a specific development approval condition.

 

4.         KOEHLER/ROSE TDU EXEMPTION, FILE #13-S3165:   This is a request for a TDU exemption with 3 residential lots and one non-residential lot.  Appeals to Section 8.14.1.M, Section 8.14.1.M.2.b., Section 8.14.1.R. and Section 8.14.1.P.

 

The proposed TDU (transferable density units) Exemption includes four lots, three of which are proposed to be developed as residential properties and one residual lot which will be non-buildable.  The property is 35.58 acres and is currently undeveloped.  The Land Use Code allows for a TDU exemption process outlined in the Fossil Creek Reservoir Area Plan (FCRAP) transferable density units overlay zone, Section 4.2.3.J.5 of the LUC.  An appeal to increase the allowed number of TDU Exemption lots from 2 to 3 was approved by the County Commissioners on August 19, 2013.   A portion of the property is located with the receiving area of the FCRAP and the balance is in the sending area.  The majority of the property is also designed as part of the Resource Management Area for the Fossil Creek plan area.  The property is adjacent to the 55dB noise contour and is 1.5 miles from the Fort Collins-Loveland Airport.  Public water, sewer, phone and power are located nearby and will be extended to the proposed lots.  The property is served by a private access road, which will be extended to a new paved private access road to serve the proposed new lots.  The new residential structures will be fire-sprinklered.

 

Comments received from referral agencies include:

·  The Health Department dated March 5, 2014.

·  The Engineering Department:

o  Clint Jones dated March 18, 2014.

o  Brian Helminiak dated April 25, 2014.

·  Environmental Coordinator dated February 28, 2014.

·  Addressing comments dated March 6, 2014.

·  Comments from the Department of Natural Resources dated March 18, 2014.

·  The Poudre Fire Authority provided comments dated March 13, 2014. 

·  The City of Fort Collins provided comments dated March 25, 2014.

·  The Colorado Geological Survey provided comments dated March 17, 2014.

·  The Colorado Division of Water Resources provided comments dated March 7, 2014.

·  The Army Corps of Engineers provided a letter dated February 28, 2014.

 

Other major concerns and issues:

 

Wetlands – A good part of the southern portion of the property and a portion of proposed Lot 3 contain wetland areas.  A building envelope (for both primary and accessory buildings) is proposed on Lot 3 to provide a buffer from that area.  The installation of the sewer line will cross the wetland area.  The applicant has provided plans to address this construction and minimize impacts.  The City of Fort Collins has indicated that they would like to receive a copy of the Army Corps of Engineers permit for this construction.  Staff has included this as a condition of approval.  In addition, the City has recommended that a note be placed on the plat restricting future development in this area.  This is also included as a proposed condition of approval.   The applicant has provided a Use Plan for Residual Lot A.

 

Avigation Easement – During Sketch Plan review comments from the Fort Collins – Loveland Airport indicate the lots will be just outside the 55dB noise contour.  The houses should be designed with this in mind.  A Disclosure Notice for these lots should address this potential noise and disclose the presence of the nearby airport and runway which will routinely have aircraft departing and arriving in the airspace above this property.  Additionally, the airport recommends an avigation easement be prepared and recorded for this land division.  The applicant does not wish to execute an avigation easement, but has agreed to include this information in the disclosure notice for the development.  No further comments were received for this TDU Exemption application.

 

Building Envelope on Lot 3- The Colorado Geologic Survey commented that the southwestern 1/3 of proposed Lot 3 is located within a mapped “Severe Geologic Limitation” area.  They recommend modification of the proposed building envelope to exclude the area below the elevation 4887 contour as shown on the plat.

 

The applicant has addressed the concerns and issues raised during review of this proposal.  Those that have not been completely resolved or that should be addressed at final plat have been recommended as conditions of approval. The applicant has committed to meeting the requirements of the Land Use Code, as outlined above and in the application materials and in response to comments generated throughout the review. The applicant has demonstrated that all standards and technical requirements of the Larimer County Land Use Code and all applicable federal, stated and county laws and regulations can be complied with.

 

The Development Services Team would recommend to the Board of County Commissioners the adoption of the following findings with respect to this requested TDU Exemption: 

 

A.   The proposed TDU Exemption Plat is compatible with existing and allowed uses in the surrounding area;

B.   The newly created parcels meet the minimum lot size required by the applicable zoning district;

C.   The newly created parcels meet the minimum access standards required by the County Engineer;

D.   The proposed TDU exemption plat will comply with section 8.1 of this code concerning adequate public facilities with regard to roads, water, sewer, fire protection and drainage;

E.   The proposed TDU exemption plat will not adversely affect special places of Larimer County; and

F.   Applicable transportation capital expansion fees, park fees in-lieu of dedication, school fees and drainage fees will be paid at building permit issuance.

 

The Development Services Team recommends approval of the Koehler/Rose TDU Exemption, File # 13-S3165, and Appeals to Section 8.14.1.M, Section 8.14.1.M.2.b.,Section 8.14.1.R. and  Section 8.14.1.P. subject to the following conditions:

 

1.   The applicant shall submit the final plat materials within one year of approval.  The final plat shall be consistent with the approved preliminary plan and with the information contained in the Koehler/Rose TDU Exemption, File # 13-S3165, 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 Koehler/Rose TDU Exemption.

 

2.   The final plat shall contain a plat note indicating that the proposed Residual Lot A can not be further developed or divided.

 

3.   Prior to the recordation of the final plat the applicant shall make the technical corrections required by Brian Helminiak, Land Surveyor of the Larimer County Engineering Department.

 

4.   The proposed building envelope for Lot 3 shall be modified in accordance with the recommendation from the Colorado Geologic Survey to exclude the area below the elevation 4887 contour as shown on the plat.  All buildings, (both accessory and primary buildings), shall be located within the building envelope.

 

5.   The following fees shall be collected at building permit issuance for new single family dwellings:  Poudre school fee, Larimer County fees for Transportation Capital Expansion, and Larimer County Regional and Community Park Fees (in lieu of dedication).  The fee amount that is current at the time of building permit application shall apply. 

 

6.   All habitable structures will require an engineered foundation system. Such engineered foundation system designs shall be based upon a site specific soils investigation.  The lowest habitable floor level shall not be less than 3 feet from the seasonal high water table.  Basements are not allowed unless prior to building permit application it can be demonstrated through additional groundwater observations, performed over a complete spring-summer-fall period (April through November), that the required separation distance can be maintained year round.

 

7.   Passive radon mitigation measures shall be included in construction of residential structures 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.

 

8.   Concurrent with the recording of the final plat, the development shall provide a Development Agreement for review and approval by the County that at a minimum outlines the conditions of approval and provides details regarding construction of the improvements to serve the development.  The Development Agreement shall also include a covenant that prohibits future development of Residual Lot A, and prohibits resubdivision of the lots.

 

9.   Concurrent with the recording of the final plat, the Developer shall provide Community Development staff with an executed and notarized Annexation Agreement to the City of Fort Collins, Colorado.

 

10.   The Disclosure notice for this development shall include information reading the nearby airport operation including routine landing and departing, airport noise impacts, the proximity of the property to the extended centerline of the primary runway and future airport expansions.

 

11.   Prior to construction of the sewer line the applicant shall provide a copy of the Army Corps of Engineers permit for excavation/trenching in the wetland area.

 

 

5.         OPENHEIMER APPEAL, FILE #14-G0262:  This is a request to appeal for an Exception from Section 5.3.2.H of the Larimer County Land Use Code to process a land division proposal as a Subdivision rather than the required Conservation Development on 40 acres in the FA-1 Farming zoning district.

 

The applicants own a 39.71 acre parcel east of Fort Collins and I-25.  This area is zoned FA-1 Farming and characterized by smaller subdivision lots along with larger agricultural parcels. The applicant is requesting the Board of County Commissioners grant an exception/appeal to the requirement that a parcel in the rural area of the County over 30 acres must use the Conservation Development process for any land division.

 

Appeal for an exception from Section 5.3.2.H of the Larimer County Land Use Code to process a land division proposal as a subdivision of a 35-acre parcel rather than the required Conservation Development.

 

The Land Use Code states that Conservation Development (CD) is intended to ensure that residential development on parcels of 30 acres or more (outside GMA Districts) is designed with creativity to maintain the open character of rural areas and protect and maintain agricultural uses and environmentally-sensitive areas while permitting development consistent with zoning.

 

Exceptions to the requirement for a Conservation Development may be granted by the County Commissioners.  An application for development of the site must be submitted within three years from the date an exception is approved or the exception will automatically expire.

 

1.   The Department of Health and Environment commented that the unique factor for this property is that it functions as an equestrian boarding operation and the proposed Lot 1 would function as a buffer to the residences on the west.

 

2.   The Engineering Department offered no specific recommendation regarding the approval or disapproval of this appeal request.

 

The Development Services Team recommends the Board of County Commissioners approve the Oppenheimer Appeal File #14-G0262, subject to the following conditions:

 

1.   Prior to the submittal of a subdivision preliminary plat application, the applicant shall provide adequate information to the Community Development Director so that he can make a determination of non-conforming use and the level of non-conforming use can be established and documented.  This information shall also include a description of how the equestrian operation is managed and demonstrate that the area proposed for Lot 1 is not integral to the operation of the existing equestrian operation facility.  If the area for Lot 1 is necessary to support the existing Equestrian Operation, the applicant may need to reduce the number of horses kept accordingly.

 

2.   A new residence on the proposed Equestrian Operation lot shall be designed and located in such a way the buildings will be clustered and fit with the existing equestrian.

 

6.         CRYSTAL LAKES LOT 9, 10, AND 21A LOT CONSOLIDATION AND EASEMENT VACATION, FILE #14-S3221:   This is a request for lot consolidation of Lot 9, 10 and 21A in Crystal Lakes 15th filing and to vacate the 10-foot, 20-foot total utility easements along the common lot lines. 

The applicant and owners in the this request propose this lot consolidation to allow for setback and  buffer to adjoining lots and to create the best building site for the property.  The resulting 8.62-acre lot will be substantially larger than the required lot size in the E-Estate zoning district.  This action combines two lots with an adjoining lot that resulted from the prior combination of three lots. The applicant also proposes that all of the common lot line utility easements be vacated which creates a large useable area.  

No agency has commented or noted any issue with the proposed consolidation or vacation.

 

The proposed lot consolidation and easement vacation meet the requirements of the Code and do not negatively affect any adjoining property

 

The Development Services Team recommends Approval of the Crystal Lakes 15th Filing Lots 9, 10 and 21A Lot Consolidation and easement vacation and vacation of the 10’ utility easements located on the common lot lines file #14-S3221, subject to the following conditions:

 

1.   All conditions of approval shall be met and the final resolution recorded by November 12, 2014, or this approval shall be null and void.

 

2.   The resultant lot is subject to any and all covenants, deed restrictions, or other conditions that apply to the original lots.

 

3.   The vacation of the utility easement and the reconfiguration of the lots lines shall be finalized at such time when the findings and resolution of the County Commissioners is recorded. 

 

7.         CRYSTAL LAKES LOT 1 EASEMENT VACATION, FILE #14-S3224:   This is a request to vacate the utility easement that was located along the common lot line that remained when an amended plat was approved 1999 in combining two lots, Lots 2 and 31.  Although no adverse comment or issue was identified at the time related to the easement it was specifically retained.  Now they are proposing to remove the easement.

 

No other agency has commented on this request. 

 

The applicant has provided a legal description for the easement to be vacated.  The request is consistent with the original amended plat approval in 1999 and cleans up what was apparently missed, and is consistent with the requirements of the Code. 

 

The Development Services Team recommends Approval of the Vacation of the utility easement on Lot 1 of the Amended Plat of Lots 2 & 31 Crystal Lakes 5th file # 14-S3224, subject to the following condition :

 

1.   The applicant shall provide a legal description for the vacated easement before the Board of County Commissioner finalize the Findings and Resolution.

 

8.         ART 342 AMENDED SPECIAL EXCEPTIONS, FILE #14-Z1924:   This is a request to amend the Art 342 Special Exception approval for an artist retreat with five studios and a single-family residence and accessory home occupations and studio space.

 

This item was on the discussion agenda for the April 16, 2014, Larimer County Planning Commission meeting.  The Larimer County Planning Commission considered placing the item on consent but one member of the public was present with questions.  The request remained on the discussion agenda.  The Staff made a brief presentation and the applicant made brief remarks.  The one property owner, Mrs. Cram, had questions regarding how the property would be used, if there were kitchens and if the units could be occupied like rental apartments.  The answer to these questions was no.  There are not kitchens and the units cannot be used for accommodation.  The additional concern voiced was that by allowing rental of the units, a business was being allowed in the FA-1 Farming zoning.  The response to this was that the exchange of cash did not alter the nature of the land use and its impacts, and that this proposal was of less impact that the original approval. 

 

The Larimer County Planning Commission and the Development Services Team recommends Approval of the Amended ART 342 Special Exception File # 14-Z1924 subject to the following conditions:

 

The Planning Commission recommend to the Board of County Commissioners approval of the Art 342 Amended Special Review, file #14-Z1924, subject to the following conditions:

 

1.   Failure to comply with any conditions of the Special Exception approval may result in reconsideration of the use and possible revocation of the approval by the Board of Commissioners. The Special Exception approval shall automatically expire without a public hearing if the use is not commenced within three years of the date of approval.

 

2.   The Site shall be developed consistent with the approved plan and with the information contained in the Amended Art 342 Special Exception, File #14-Z1924, 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 Art 342 Special Exception, File #14-Z1924.

 

3.   The Amended Art 342 Special Exception Special Exception is approved without the requirement for a Development Agreement. The Findings and Resolution shall apply and shall be a servitude running with the Property. Those owners of the property or any portion of the property who obtain title subsequent to the date of recording of the Findings and Resolution, their heirs, successors, assigns or transferees, and persons holding under applicants shall comply with the terms and conditions of the Special Exception approval.

 

4.   In the event the applicant fails to comply with any Conditions of Approval or otherwise fails to use the property consistent with the approved Special Exception, applicant agrees that in addition to all other remedies available to County, County may withhold building permits , issue a written notice to applicant to appear and show cause why the Special Exception approval should not be revoked, and / or bring a court action for enforcement of the terms of the Special Exception. All remedies are cumulative and the County ' s election to use one shall not preclude use of another. In the event County must retain legal counsel and/or pursue a court action to enforce the terms of this Special Exception approval, applicant agrees to pay all expenses incurred by County including, but not limited to, reasonable attorney's fees.

 

5.   County may conduct periodic inspections to the property and reviews of the status of the Special Exception as appropriate to monitor and enforce the terms of the Special Exception approval. The Artist Retreat is limited to no more than five artists at a single time coming to the site. No on site sales of artwork, art showings or art instruction are allowed.

 

6.   The applicant shall maintain the vault system for the sink drains in the artist studio building and provide for routine maintenance and pumping of the vault.

 

7.   All activities and uses on site are limited to those for the Special Exception as approved, and shall not include art sales, showings, instruction or other special functions.  The use of the large studio building shall be allowed to contain the home occupation and the resident’s studio space. 

 

M O T I O N

 

Commissioner Gaiter moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the consent agenda, as outlined and amended above.

 

Motion carried 3-0. 

 

The hearing recessed at 3:10 p.m.

 

 

PUBLIC HEARING FOR FLOWER POWER BOTANICALS

RETAIL MARAJUANA SALES AND CULTIVATION LICENSE APPLICATIONS

 

 

The Board of County Commissioners reconvened at 6:30 p.m. with Matt Lafferty, Principal Planner. Chair Donnelly presided and Commissioners Johnson and Gaiter were present. Also present were: Michael Whitley, and Terry Gilbert, Planning Department; Doug Ryan, Environmental Health Department; Clint Jones, Engineering Department; Jeannine Haag, County Attorney’s Office; and Gael Cookman, Deputy Clerk.

 

Chair Donnelly opened the hearing with the Pledge of Allegiance. 

 

1.         FLOWER POWER BOTANICALS LICENSES, FILE #14-G0259:   This is a request for approval of a Retail Marijuana Store License and a Retail Marijuana Cultivation Facility License.  The applications include a waiver request from a provision within Section VIII.A.4 of the Larimer County Resolution for Licensure of Retail Marijuana Establishments to allow the licensed premises to be located closer than 500 feet to a place of amusement or recreation. 

 

The applicant requests approval of a Retail Marijuana Store License and a Retail Marijuana Cultivation Facility License for 1308 & 1310 Duff Drive, which are two units within a multi-tenant building located north of Duff Drive approximately 750 feet northwest of the intersection of Link Lane and Duff Drive. 

 

The property is zoned I – Industrial, is within the Fort Collins Growth Management Area and within the East Mulberry Corridor Plan area.

 

The Larimer County Land Use Code specifies that Retail Marijuana Establishments are uses by right in the C – Commercial and I – Industrial zoning districts, subject to state and local licensing.  The State of Colorado has issued Licenses (conditioned on receiving local licensing approval) for the proposed Retail Marijuana Store and Retail Marijuana Cultivation Facility.

 

The property is 1.89 acres and the building is 29,520 square feet.  Flower Power Botanicals received Special Review approval from the Board of County Commissioners on November 15, 2010 to operate a Medical Marijuana Dispensary & a Medical Marijuana Grow Operation within two units of the building totaling 5,040 square feet.  Flower Power Botanicals is proposing to add the Retail Marijuana Store and Retail Marijuana Cultivation Facility within the same tenant space.   Approval or denial of the proposed Retail Marijuana Establishment Licenses would not affect the Special Review approval. 

 

The surrounding area contains a variety of commercial and industrial uses including a salvage yard, manufacturing, warehousing, contractor shops, outdoor storage and offices.  One unit in the building northwest of the property contains a radio controlled race car track which is classified as a place of amusement or recreation by the Larimer County Land Use Code.

 

The applicant has requested a waiver from a provision within Section VIII.A.4 of the Larimer County Resolution for Licensure of Retail Marijuana Establishments to allow the licensed premises to be located closer than 500 feet to a place of amusement or recreation. 

 

The Larimer County Resolution for Licensure of Retail Marijuana Establishments specifies that Larimer County will issue no more than two Retail Marijuana Store Licenses, no more than two Retail Marijuana Cultivation Facility Licenses, no more than two Retail Marijuana Products Manufacturing Facility Licenses and no more than two Retail Marijuana Testing Facility Licenses.

 

The two existing Medical Marijuana businesses in unincorporated Larimer County have been given the opportunity to apply for the available Retail Marijuana Store Licenses and Retail Cultivation Licenses.

 

Sheriff Justin Smith’s written comments note that although the use and distribution of marijuana has been decriminalized in the state of Colorado, it remains federally illegal. Sheriff Smith objects to the licensing of any marijuana operations in Larimer County.       

 

The Larimer County Planning Commission held a public hearing on the proposed licenses on April 16, 2014.  The items were on the discussion agenda.  The Development Services Team did not make a recommendation on the waiver request; however, Planning’s staff presentation included a discussion of potential arguments for and against the request.    One member of the public spoke against the proposed Retail Marijuana Establishments.  The Planning Commission discussed the waiver request and voted 7 to 2 to recommend denial of the Licenses based on noncompliance with the 500 foot separation between Retail Marijuana Establishments and places of amusement or recreation and compatibility and adverse impact concerns based on that noncompliance. 

 

The Board of County Commissioners may waive any requirement, standard or condition of this Resolution for specific license applications for good cause, including but not limited to:

 

1.    Where the applicant offers an alternative which advances or protects the public interest and the intent and purpose of this Resolution equally or better than the requirement, standard or condition imposed by this Resolution; or

 

2.    Where the requirement, standard or condition would be unreasonably impracticable; or

 

3.    Where compliance would be counterproductive or would minimally promote the intent and purpose of this Resolution.

 

The Development Services Team has not made a recommendation on the waiver request but has presented points that the Board of County Commissioners may wish to consider when deciding whether or not to grant the waiver request.  At their April 16, 2014 public hearing, the Planning Commission voted 7 to 2 to recommend denial of the waiver request.  

 

In favor of the waiver request:

 

The owner of the racetrack has written a letter in support of the Flower Power Botanicals Retail Licenses.  In the letter, the owner states that they have never had a problem with Flower Power Botanicals and that Flower Power has been an exemplary neighbor.  He has also provided 44 signatures from a petition that reads, “I, as a patron of E-team Hobbyplex, support Flower Power Botanical’s Retail Marijuana Sales and cultivation application at 1308-1310 Duff Drive.” 

 

The applicant has operated Flower Power Botanicals in strict compliance with the Special Review approval for the last three years with no reported negative impacts and the business is at a low visibility location near the terminus of a dead end street within an industrial park.

 

Against the waiver request:

 

A 500-foot buffer from places or amusement or recreation was added to the Retail Marijuana Establishment resolution to protect the patrons of those establishments because those patrons often include minors.  The existing medical marijuana dispensary and cultivation facility have operated without complaints from the patrons of the racetrack but it is not known if there will be different impacts from the retail operation.

 

General notes regarding the waiver request:

 

The method of measuring separation requirements for new Retail Marijuana Establishments is more restrictive than the method that had been used when Flower Power Botanicals and Choice Organics were approved as medical marijuana businesses.  Because both businesses had conflicts when using the more restrictive measurement method (Flower Power Botanicals would be too close to a church and Choice Organics would be too close to a drug rehabilitation facility), the Board of County Commissioners accommodated the existing businesses by adopting regulations that allow them to use the method of measurement utilized for medical marijuana businesses when applying for Retail Marijuana Establishment Licenses.

 

As a medical marijuana business, Flower Power Botanicals was not required to have any separation from places of amusement or recreation. The separation requirement was added for Retail Marijuana Establishments at the request of a citizen and when the resolution was adopted, Larimer County staff, the Planning Commission and the Board of County Commissioners were unaware that Flower Power Botanicals did not meet the standard.  Had the conflict been known, there could have been discussion about whether or not to include an accommodation for this specific separation conflict in the regulations.   It’s possible that no accommodations would have been granted but there wasn’t an opportunity for the discussion to occur before adoption of the licensing resolution.

 

If the proposed licenses are not issued to Flower Power Botanicals, the application process will be opened to the general public.  The available Retail Store and Retail Cultivation Licenses could be applied for at two different locations, potentially in more prominent locations than Duff Drive. 

 

Flower Power Botanicals will continue to operate as a medical marijuana dispensary and concentrating medical and retail operations at this location complies with the review criteria with the alternative being dispersing retail marijuana-related businesses.

 

Retail Marijuana Establishment Licenses must be renewed annually. In deciding whether or not to renew the Licenses, the Board of County Commissioners can take into account whether the licensed premises has been operated in a manner that adversely affects the public health or the safety of the immediate neighborhood, whether complaints about the establishments have been made and whether there has been increased need for law enforcement in the vicinity as a result of the operation of the establishments.  If there are actual negative impacts from the operation of the proposed store or cultivation facility, the Board has the ability to deny the License renewals.  Section XX.A of the Resolution also grants the Board of County Commissioners the ability to suspend or revoke Licenses.

 

At their public hearing on April 16, 2014, the Planning Commission voted 7 to 2 to recommend denial of the Flower Power Botanicals Retail Marijuana Store License and denial of the Flower Power Botanicals Retail Cultivation Facility License based on non-compliance with the land use standards and review criteria referenced in Section X(F)(6) of the Larimer County Resolution for Licensure of Retail Marijuana Establishments (motion passed 7 – 2).

 

The Development Services Team has not made a recommendation on the proposed waiver request to allow the Retail Marijuana Establishments to be located less than 500 feet from a place of amusement or recreation.  If the Board of County Commissions finds that there is good cause for the waiver and supports the request, it would reasonable for the Board to find that the Retail Marijuana Establishments complies with the review criteria found in Section XII of the Resolution and approve the licenses.  If the Board of County Commissioners finds that there is not good cause to approve the waiver request, it would reasonable for the Board to find that the Retail Marijuana Establishments do not comply with the review criteria found in Section XII of the Resolution and deny the licenses. 

 

Mr. Whitely then gave a brief presentation, noting that if the Board chooses not to grant the waiver request, then it would allow others to come in and apply for both a retail marijuana store license, and a cultivation license.  So if the Board’s intention was to concentrate the licenses within a certain local, and with a known and trusted owner, then they might wish to consider granting the waiver. 

 

The applicant, Peter Verchick, explained that he was not trying to sneak this application in under the radar, and that he truly was not aware that the hobby shop and activities there would be a conflict.  Mr. Verchick stated that if the Board granted the waiver, it would not be setting a precedent for others, as his is a completely unique situation being that he already has an approved Medical Marijuana facility and is the only one able to currently apply for the retail licenses.  Mr. Verchick requested the Board approve his waiver request and applications.

 

Chair Donnelly opened up the hearing for public comment and both Eric Sutherland, and Jathan Trevina expressed concerns with problems associated with marijuana facilities, exposure to youth in the vicinity, and protecting public safety. 

 

Adam Elan explained that he moved to Colorado as he wants to raise his children in a more progressive state.  Mr. Elan stated that he is impressed with how Larimer County is implementing the retail marijuana stores, and further stated that he is in favor of granting Mr. Verchick the applications.

 

There was no further public comment.

 

Mr. Verchick reiterated that approving the waiver would not be setting precedence for other applicants, and he appreciated the Board’s consideration of the waiver request.

 

Under discussion, Commissioner Gaiter stated he struggles with the fact that there is only a 25-foot buffer from the recreation/amusement facility, so he would support the cultivation facility, but prefers that the retail sales be at a different location.

 

Both Commissioner Johnson and Chair Donnelly stated that they would support the waiver requests as it concentrates the business, and it keeps the sales with a known and proven applicant and owner.

 

M O T I O N

 

Commissioner Johnson moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the waiver request of Section VIII.A.4 of the Larimer County Resolution for Licensure of Retail Marijuana Establishments to allow a cultivation facility to be located closer than 500 feet to a place of amusement or recreation. 

 

Motion carried 3-0.

 

M O T I O N

 

Commissioner Johnson moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the waiver request of Section VIII.A.4 of the Larimer County Resolution for Licensure of Retail Marijuana Establishments to allow a retail sales store to be located closer than 500 feet to a place of amusement or recreation. 

 

Motion carried 2-1; Commissioner Gaiter dissenting.

 

M O T I O N

 

Commissioner Johnson moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the Flower Power Botanicals Retail Marijuana Store License and the Retail Marijuana Cultivation Facility License (File #14-G0259).

 

Motion carried 3-0.

 

The hearing adjourned at 7:45 p.m.

 

TUESDAY, MAY 13, 2014

 

ADMINISTRATIVE MATTERS

 

The Board of County Commissioners met at 9:00 a.m. with Linda Hoffmann, County Manager. Chair Donnelly presided and Commissioners Johnson and Gaiter were present. Also present were: Donna Hart, and Deni LaRue, Commissioners’ Office; Carol Block, Finance Department; and Gael Cookman, Deputy Clerk.

 

Chair Donnelly opened the meeting for public comment during which Norman Jordan, John Stephen, and Eric Sutherland addressed the Board.

 

Chair Donnelly then led everyone in the Pledge of Allegiance

 

1.         APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES FOR THE WEEK OF MAY 5, 2014:

 

M O T I O N

 

Commissioner Gaiter moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the minutes for the week of May 5, 2014.

 

Motion carried 3-0.

 

2.         REVIEW OF THE SCHEDULE FOR THE WEEK OF MAY 19, 2014:   Ms. Hart reviewed the upcoming schedule with the Board.

 

3.         CONSENT AGENDA:

 

M O T I O N

 

Commissioner Johnson moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the consent agenda as outlined below:

 

05132014A001           AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS AND CONNELL RESOURCES, INC. FOR PROJECT NO. 288

 

05132014A002           MUTUAL AID AGREEMENT CONCERNING LAW ENFORCEMENT COVERAGE BETWEEN THE BOULDER COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE AND THE LARIMER COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE

 

05123014A003           AGREEMENT CONCERNING SIGN AND PARKING AREA IN AND ADJACENT TO THE PLATTED RIGHT-OF-WAY OF LARIMER COUNTY ROAD 56

 

05132014D001           DEED OF DEDICATION: SOCIETY OF SAINT PIUS X

 

05132014R001           FINDINGS AND RESOLUTION APPROVING THE AMENDED PLAT OF LOT 49, TRACT 6, AND LOTS 1 AND 2, TRACT 2, IN THE BIG ELK MEADOWS SUBDIVISION

 

05132014R002           FINDINGS AND RESOLUTION APPROVING AN AMENDED PLAT OF LOTS 36 AND 37, ESTES PARK ESTATES 2ND FILING AND VACATION OF UTILITY EASEMENT

 

05132014R003           FINDINGS AND RESOLUTION APPROVING THE VACATION OF A UTILITY EASEMENT IN LOT 78, FORT COLLINS BUSINESS CENTER, AMENDED LOTS 7 & 8, FIRST FILING UTLITY EASEMENT VACATION

 

05132014R004           FINDINGS AND RESOLUTION APPROVING THE AMENDED PLAT OF RESIDUAL LOT C, BUEHLER GREEN ACRES R.L.U.P.

 

05132014R005           LOT CONSOLIDATION RESOLUTION APPROVING THE CONSOLIDATION OF LOTS 30 AND 31, CUSHMAN’S LAKEVIEW, 2ND FILING

 

LIQUOR LICENSES:  The following licenses were issued and/or approved: Loveland County Store – 3.2% Beer Retail – Loveland; Colorado Cherry Company – Beer and Wine – Lyons; Pot Belly Restaurant & Lounge – Tavern – Red Feather Lakes; The Carter Lake Sailing Club – Special Events Permit 3.2% - Loveland; Riversong – Bed & Breakfast 6% - Estes Park. 

 

Motion carried 3-0.

 

4.         ASSIGNMENT OF PRIVATE ACITIVITY BOND ALLOCATION:  Ms. Block introduced Moofie Miller, with the Loveland Housing Authority, and Tim Hoppin, with Citi Bank.  She then explained they were requesting the Board’s approval on a resolution authorizing assignment of the county’s private activity bond allocation for 2104, in the amount of $4,605,600, for the Housing Authority of Loveland.  The money will finance multi-family housing revenue bonds for the Ashley Estates Project.  Some discussion ensued regarding the affordable housing project that would provide 224 units.

 

M O T I O N

 

Commissioner Gaiter moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the resolution authorizing assignment of the County’s Private Activity Bond Allocation for 2014 to the City of Loveland Housing Authority, to finance multi-family housing revenue bonds for the Ashley Estates Project.

 

Motion carried 3-0.

 

05132014R006           CERTIFICATE OF LARIMER COUNTY CONCERNING ASSIGNMENT OF PRIVATE ACTIVITY BOND VOLUME CAP ALLOCATION TO THE HOUSE AUTHORITY OF THE CITY OF LOVELAND

 

 

5.         COUNTY MANAGER WORKSESSION:    There were no worksession items to discuss.

 

6.         COMMISSIONER ACTIVITY REPORTS:  The Board reviewed their involvement at events during the past week.

 

7.         LEGAL MATTERS:   

 

The executive session ended at 10:35 a.m., with no further action taken.

 

 

 _______________________________

TOM DONNELLY, CHAIR

BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS

 

ANGELA MYERS

CLERK AND RECORDER

 

ATTEST:

 

__________________________________________

Gael M. Cookman, Deputy Clerk

Background Image: Rocky Mountain National Park by Sue Burke. All rights reserved.