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PROCEEDINGS OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS

MONDAY, NOVEMBER 20, 1995

MEETING REGARDING OPTIONS IN DEALING

WITH LIQUOR VIOLATIONS AND POSSIBILITY

OF FORMING A LIQUOR AUTHORITY BOARD

(#403)

The Board of County Commissioners met at 1:30 p.m. in regular session with Myrna Rodenberger, Larimer County Clerk; George Hass, County Attorney and Sheriff Shockley. Chair Disney presided; Commissioner Clarke was present. Also present was Sherry Graves, Clerk to the Board and Frank Lancaster, County Manager. Recording Clerk, A. Jensen.

Commissioner Clarke expressed his concerns regarding violations of liquor codes, how they are handled by Larimer County, and discuss the possibility of establishing a liquor authority board. Commissioner Clarke briefly outlined the concept of a liquor authority board. Much discussion followed with respect to the rules and regulations governing liquor licensees, staffing requirements to administer liquor establishments, the pros and cons of establishing a liquor board and the possibility of tagging kegs similar to the requirements set up by the City of Loveland.

Discussion then moved to the topic of a County noise ordinance. The Commissioners instructed Mr. Hass to compose a noise ordinance for review and approval.

CONSENSUS OF THE BOARD was to continue to retain the decision making authority over liquor licenses located in unincorporated Larimer County.

The meeting recessed at 2:30 p.m.







PUBLIC MEETING REGARDING INTERMOUNTAIN CABLE SYSTEMS

(#402 & #403 Side B)

Commissioner Clarke presided over the third public hearing for Intermountain Cable Systems held at 7:00 p.m. in the Commissioner's Hearing Room. The following county personnel were present: Russ Legg, Cable TV Coordinator; Mike Bryant, Public Works Access and Utility Coordinator; Tom Duchen, President, and Marcel Hunter of River Oaks Communications Corporation, Consultants for Larimer County; and Jeannine Haag, Assistant County Attorney. Recording Clerk, S. Graves.

Commissioner Clarke called the public hearing to order, introduced county staff, and turned the meeting over to Mr. Duchen. Mr. Duchen provided a brief overview of the cable renewal process and described how it operates under the cable acts in which a municipality looks at past performance of the cable operator to determine if they have met their franchise obligations, examines the way in which their system is working, or not working, and also looks at the system to see whether it will meet the future needs of the community. Mr. Duchen noted that under the terms of the cable acts, these public hearings are very important because the input is critical and essential in the process.

Craig Poulsen, General Manager Intermountain Cable, addressed the crowd and stated that during the public hearing in January there were a number of complaints raised and they responded to the comments made at that meeting; at the second hearing in April, they received a good progress report. Mr. Poulsen stated he is here tonight to listen and learn and to see what else they need to do to make things rights. Mr. Bryant reported that he is very disappointed in the lack of progress that Intermountain Cable has made and, in his opinion, feels they are not cooperating with the county; he noted that the cable company was given a list of corrective work to perform shortly after the January meeting and in a follow-up inspection performed last week, they found that only one-third of the items had been corrected. Mr. Bryant stated that he has received correspondence from Intermountain Cable addressing the violations and those letters have been misleading and he cited several examples; he added that Larimer County is continuing to get complaints from Poudre Valley REA, Public Service, and Intermountain customers. Jerry Sullivan, consultant for Stove Prairie Inspections Services and hired to do contract inspections for Larimer County, reported that in January he did an inspection of the Intermountain Cable System and came up with 424 regulation violations; last week he did another inspection and came up with 271 of the same violations that were on the original list; he stated that they had been led to believe that most of these had been corrected, but they were not. He noted that there was no work done on the major violations, which are power violations and are hazards where cable could come into contact with electrical services; he did note they made good progress on burying drops, but they are not keeping up to date and in talking to cable customers while doing his inspections, he added there was not a one that was satisfied with service. Commissioner Clarke asked Mr. Sullivan if there was sufficient time for Intermountain Cable to have solved all the problems raised at the January hearing; Mr. Sullivan responded affirmatively. Mr. Bryan summarized by stating that they would rate the performance of Intermountain Cable as very unsatisfactory.

At this time the hearing was opened for public comment and the following persons described their problems and dissatisfaction with Intermountain Cable: Ingrid Simpson, Joe Simpson, Roland Lindner, Carol Huerta, Katherine Williams, Ruth Minges, George Lofton, Mary Hagen, Bob Hoffman, LaVonne Heiman, Phil Soper, Joe Techlux, Charlie Templer, Robin Heiman, Gina Waddis, Barbara Trevarten, and Darrell Hamilton. These persons noted that the problems cited in January are still on-going; they expressed concerns of static on the TV and they are tired of hearing the same old excuses - REA lines in the way and its their problem, weather, signal out of Denver is too weak, they are at the end of the line, etc. The Simpsons stated they have installed a satellite and it works good; they think there needs to be more competition and they don't think they have enough on-line amplifiers because reception is good at 4 a.m. Other concerns raised were: unburied cable, poor service, poor response to customers, discontinuance of service, concern of danger from ground wires, refund should be allowed for days service is out, credibility of the company, outages all the time, and the excuse is always the weather, regardless of what the weather is. Mr. Lindner from Bellvue submitted many letters of complaint from many of his neighbors, Ms. Williams from Cloverleaf Mobile Home City stated she has lived here one year and previously she lived all over the country and never had such bad service - she has had more trouble in five months than she had in 20 years. Ms. Waddis informed Mr. Paulson that there was no one to protest at the April public hearing because they weren't informed of that hearing. Ms. Trevarten, Manager of Cloverleaf Mobile City, agreed with everything said tonight and submitted ten letters from people that couldn't come to tonight's meeting with complaints about Intermountain Cable; she noted that when she called the residents in her park, there were only 3 persons out of 144 that were not unhappy with their cable service and she stated that if Intermountain is allowed to continue, there should be a review system on the company.

At this time Mr. Legg entered three additional public comments into the record: 1) Letter from Ronne Sibley from Lago Vista Mobile Home Park in the Loveland area, indicating she has seen very little improvement; 2) Letter from Mr. & Mrs. Charles in Adriel Hills urging and recommending the company and the county to provide InterConnect; 3) Phone calls about unburied cable which has been there for over 60 days.

Mr. Paulson responded to the problems and issues raised; he noted that his records indicate that 300 of the 400 violations given to them in January have been completed. In addition, during their work resolving those violations, many additional violations were discovered and taken care of at that time; he agreed there are still some major violations out there and he submitted a letter today to Mr. Bryant about what had been completed, what their plans are, and what still needs to be done. Mr. Paulson noted that they are considering upgrading their cable system to include some fiber which will increase the picture quality; he stated that the majority of the citizens here tonight are from Cloverleaf and the east side of I-25 has always been a problem for them and they have done many things to try and solve their problems. Mr. Paulson stated that they have been dragging their feet on correcting some of the problems because they are trying to decide whether or not to put in fiber. Mr. Paulson stated that on the east side they seem to have a lot of REA power outages and their cable relies on power to run; he noted they have included standby power in their 96' budget as they are finally getting enough subscribers to justify and pay for standby power, as it is very expensive. With regard to the 800# line, Mr. Paulson admitted they have had some problems, they are training lots of new people, they have expanded the hours at their call center, and they are in constant contact with them. With regard to the weather related problems, he believes the fiber link would help solve a lot of these problems and he also stated they are in the process of doing an InterConnect with Columbine to bring the county channel to the subscribers. Mr. Paulson did note that there isn't enough electricity on the cable lines to harm anyone and he stated that people do not have to pay to bury their cable as that is part of installation cost; however, if someone cuts their cable by mistake, they have to pay for it. Mr. Paulson assured the folks that they will address all the problems in Cloverleaf, Mill Canyon, Terry Lake, and the Country Club area. Mr. Paulson stated that they have enjoyed their time in Larimer County and he honestly believes this system has improved tremendously for 95% of the customers over the years since they have been involved; he noted that the system was poorly built in the beginning and they have spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to upgrade this system and to do things to try and improve it and they are not going to give up. Mr. Paulson assured Commissioner Clarke that they are going to make these people happy and that is their commitment to the county and to the people; they will give them something that is reliable and the quality they want and he apologized for all the inconveniences they have had. Ms. Trevarten asked Mr. Paulson two questions: 1) What kind of time frame for installation of the fiber system, and 2) What about the Fort Collins news station? Mr. Paulson responded that their goal is to add the news station in the middle of 96' and the fiber link is in the 96' budget, but he doesn't know the time frame for sure.

At this time the public hearing was closed and Commissioner Clarke thanked everyone for speaking tonight. Commissioner Clarke noted that we are in a process which involves a rather lengthy review process which will lead up to renewal or non-renewal of different cable television contracts throughout Larimer County. Commissioner Clarke stated that Mr. Paulson has some real problems and the folks speaking tonight have illustrated their concerns; Mr. Paulson has a franchise given him by Larimer County to operate a cable system and the question now has to be answered whether or not reasonable and substantial progress is being made to resolve those problems. Commissioner Clarke stated that he can see that work is being done on this system, but he is concerned that there are many areas in which this system is not in compliance with the agreement currently held between Larimer County and Intermountain Cable. Commissioner Clarke stated that adequate testimony has been heard tonight that service is very intermittent and Intermountain purchased a poorly constructed system and he suggested they may have to rebuild it in order for them to accomplish the things outlined in their agreement.

Mr. Duchen made several suggestions regarding specific things they are going to put in writing to the company; with respect to the franchise compliance issues, there are numerous sections in the agreement which require in specific terms obligations that are incumbent on the operator to carry out. Mr. Duchen further stated that from the standpoint of an overview in comparison, River Oaks Communications Corporation has been involved in franchise renewal work with many operators in many states throughout this country and he noted that the type and substance of input heard this evening, in addition to what we have seen throughout the process, is very disappointing in terms of the track record; he stated that usually when they are involved in the renewal process, the focus is on rates. Tonight we are hearing complaints regarding signal quality, safety-related violations, customer service issues, responsiveness on the part of the operator, etc. and these are matters very much within the preview of the cable operator. Mr. Duchen noted that while they recognize and appreciate that Intermountain Cable has taken steps to move forward with respect to some of these issues, the fact that the county has been told, in writing, that the violations noted in the inspection report were going to be taken care of and fixed originally by the beginning of August and then told they would be done by the end of October, that is not the type of operating record that benefits the municipality and the people or the operator. In terms of the specifics of the agreement, the agreement provides a vehicle and a mechanism by which the county is entitled to give the operator notice as to issues involving potential or alleged non-compliance with the agreement; the operator is given the opportunity to fix those, a public hearing can be scheduled, and then depending upon the outcome of that hearing, in accordance with the terms of the agreement, the operator would be given an opportunity to cure some of the problems with the agreement. Mr. Duchen read and paraphrased Article 2 of Section 2 of the agreement..."The company shall construct, install, operate and maintain its system in a manner consistent with all applicable laws, ordinances, county resolutions, county standards, governmental requirements, and FCC technical standards. Construction, installation, and maintenance of the cable television system shall be performed in an orderly and workmanlike manner; the company shall at all times comply with National Electrical Safety Code, National Electrical Code, applicable FCC or other Federal, State, or Local regulations, including such construction, installation, maintenance, and operational standards as may be adopted by the County from time to time... Mr. Duchen noted that these are just examples from one section of the agreement of the requirements that are incumbent on the part of the cable operator and there are other requirements in this agreement. Therefore, the next step for the county is to indicate to the cable operator those areas in the agreement where the County believes there may not be compliance with this agreement and based on what we have seen in the past is that the County has been very willing to work with the cable operator, and still is attempting to do so; reasonable periods of time have been given to fix problems and there has been an attempt to have an on-going dialogue to resolve the problems. Mr. Duchen noted that are several steps to be taken: 1) The operator needs to fix the existing problems and a time period needs to be set and adhered to; 2) While Mr. Paulson has indicated that the company is considering including fiber, it is suggested that Intermountain give very detailed consideration and serious thought to a re-build of this cable system because, in the context of a renewal proceeding, the system must not only work well today, but needs to meet the future needs of the community. Mr. Duchen stated that deploying fiber throughout a system can be helpful and beneficial, but is very different than a rebuild of the cable system which will add capacity, provide new services, and greatly increase and enhance the possibility of a reliable working system. Mr. Duchen suggested that the company give consideration to an examination of an upgrade of this system to a 550 megahertz space to a 750 megahertz system with fiber to the node deployment so that fiber is deployed throughout the system on a node basis so that at any given level there will be a certain number of homes connected to each node. By doing this, this will increase the quality of the system and decrease the problem of outages that effect significant portions of the system. That type of system would provide a capability for 76 channels and would provide the possibility for interactive services and other services which could be very beneficial for the residents of the community. Mr. Duchen suggested that the company go ahead and put pencil to paper and look at the cost of doing this; he informed Mr. Paulson that the county is very willing to sit down and look at that with him to see how this might work and to discuss if this will create a viable return for the company. Mr. Duchen stated that it is time now for some very objective data and we need that in order to continue on because the problems need to be rectified and when looking at a renewal potential for many years, the system needs to be one which is commensurate with meeting the needs of the people that live in the community. As far as the past performance review and future needs assessment, Mr. Paulson stated that those are continuing and will be on-going. Mr. Duchen noted that there are other issues and matters as well that will need to be discussed in more detail with the company. In summary, based on the objective input they have heard tonight, there are many things that need to be fixed and corrected so people can receive the type of service they hope to receive when they sign on as subscribers.

Commissioner Clarke thanked Mr. Duchen and noted that what he had to say makes sense and he suggested they pursue these things immediately and we need to put the company on notice that we have violations of the agreement, give them a time frame in which to get those violations corrected, and that the county be very diligent in making sure those changes and remedies occur .

The meeting adjourned at 9:00 p.m.

WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 22, 1995

ADMINISTRATIVE MATTERS

(#404 & #405)

The Board of County Commissioners met at 9:00 a.m. in regular session with Frank Lancaster, County Manager. Chair Disney presided; Commissioner Clarke was present. Also present was: Donna Hart, Assistant to the County Manager; Ann Watson, Health Education Supervisor; Ginny Riley, Human Development Executive Director; Joannie Schlueter, Administrative Director; and Sam Szymanski, Human Development Grants Manager. Recording Clerk, A. Jensen.

1. OPEN SESSION FOR PUBLIC COMMENT: Mr. Jack Swets approached the Board to comment on various topics, such as land use and how decisions are made by the Board. Mr. Swets will address the Board December 6 when all the Commissioners are in attendance to discuss land use issues and the open space tax. Discussion ensued regarding how public hearings are conducted.

Ms. Brigitte Schmidt voiced her concerns regarding development of the northeast part of Larimer County. Ms. Schmidt noted that the neighbors are considering hiring a consultant to review their situation in an effort to preserve the characteristics of their neighborhood. The Commissioners advised Ms. Schmidt to become involved in the development of PLUS, which will address many of the concerns she has raised. Much discussion ensued with respect to urban density, city annexation and country living preservation. The Commissioners confirmed that they will have a task force after the search conference has been completed. It was noted that PLUS is scheduled to be completed in September 1996.

2. PROCLAMATION FOR WORLD AIDS DAY: Ms. Watson presented a red ribbon to each of the Commissioners in recognition of World AIDS Day and requested Chair Disney's signature on the proclamation. Ms. Watson reported that five new cases were reported in 1994 and four in 1995. Ms. Watson also expressed optimism in decreasing the number of cases.

M O T I O N

Commissioner Clarke moved that the Board proclaim December 1, 1995 as World AIDS Day and authorize the Chair to sign the proclamation as submitted by Ms. Watson.

Motion carried 2 - 0.

3. RURAL TRANSPORTATION: Ms Szymanski gave an overview of the memo submitted to the Commissioners regarding paratransit services after Care-A-Van closes their doors on December 31, 1995. Discussion followed with respect to ownership of the vehicles, proposed fees, drug-testing of drivers and how this program is to be administrated. Ms. Szymanski noted she was very impressed with the level of cooperation amongst the governmental agencies towards making this program work. CONSENSUS OF THE BOARD was to authorize the proposed fee schedule and instruct Ms. Szymanski to proceed with her plans in providing rural transportation.

4. RESOLUTION ON GEOGRAPHIC INFORMATION MANAGEMENT SYSTEM: Mr. Lancaster highlighted changes he had made in this resolution as well as note that the coordinator position will be filled after the first of the year.

M O T I O N

Commissioner Clarke moved that the Board adopt the resolution concerning the organizational structure of the Geographic Information System (GIS) and mapping services for Larimer County and authorize the Chair to sign same.

Motion carried 2 - 0.

R95-177g RESOLUTION ON GEOGRAPHIC INFORMATION MANAGEMENT SYSTEM.

5. DISCUSSION OF H.H.S. LETTER AND RESOLUTION: Mr. Lancaster summarized the events surrounding this matter. Commissioner Clarke suggested that a copy of the draft be submitted to the Health and Human Services Council to allow for review and comment.

6. LEGISLATIVE PRIORITIES: Mr. Lancaster inquired of the Commissioners if there was any legislation that they would like to see introduced in the next legislative session. Commissioner Clarke stated he wants Larimer County to have the authority to prohibit the inhumane treatment of animals. Mr. Lancaster stated he will compile a comprehensive list of legislative priorities to ensure coordination. Chair Disney suggested to schedule a luncheon meeting with the appropriate legislators to discuss the upcoming legislative session. Ms. Hart will schedule the meeting.

7. WORKSESSION:

-- Update on Facilities Project: Mr. Lancaster provided the Commissioners with a detailed update on Mr. Fraser's activities; visually demonstrating options for the Commissioners to consider and discuss. Much discussion ensued regarding the options, associated variations, and the current priorities. Mr. Lancaster stated that much work is needed in developing a null alternative to demonstrate potential problems if expansion does not occur. Mr. Lancaster also noted that interviews for the Facilities Project Coordinator position will begin within the next couple of weeks. Chair Disney and Commissioners Clarke stated they were pleased with the progress of this project.

-- Christmas Cards: Ms. Hart inquired if the Commissioners wanted to send Christmas cards. CONSENSUS OF THE COMMISSIONERS was to not send Christmas cards.

-- Invitations: The Commissioners reviewed the pending invitations as submitted by Ms. Hart.

8. COMMISSIONER REPORTS:

-- Commissioner Clarke stated he had received a long report from Keith Olson, Mental Health Executive Director, detailing his involvement with Communities in School. Commissioner Clarke will route the report to Chair Disney and Commissioner Duvall for review.

-- Chair Disney spoke briefly of his meeting with Paul Thompson, Holnam representative, regarding the entry way signs. Chair Disney noted that many of the materials and labor to build these signs have been donated. Chair Disney stated he will be attending a meeting with the Estes Park City Council members.

10. DOCUMENT REVIEW:

M O T I O N

Commissioner Clarke moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the Minutes for the week of November 13, 1995, as submitted.

Motion carried 2 - 0.

M O T I O N

Commissioner Clarke moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the Schedules for the week of November 27, and December 4, 1995, as submitted.

Motion carried 2 - 0.

M O T I O N

Commissioner Clarke moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the following documents as listed on Document Review for November 22, 1995:

MISCELLANEOUS DOCUMENTS: October 1995 Check Warrant Register and the Larimer County Criteria for the Secure Detention of Juveniles - September 1995. LIQUOR LICENSES: Licenses were issued to: Mishawaka Inn - 6% WITH EXTENDED HOURS - Bellvue, CO. and Fossil Creek Conoco - 3.2% - Fort Collins, CO. County Approval was granted to: Windjammer Liquors - 6% - Loveland, CO.; Rock Inn Steakhouse - 6% - Estes Park, CO.; Red Feather Carry Out - 6% - Red Feather, CO.; and Waive of Hearings for Change of Ownership for Rustic Resort for a 6% Tavern License and for Rustic Liquors for a Liquor Store License, located at 31443A and 3144B Poudre Canyon Road, Bellvue, Colorado.

A95-125 AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE BOARD OF COUNTY

COMMISSIONERS AND BALDWIN CONSTRUCTION, INC.

(Fleet Maintenance Facility Addition)

A95-126 AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE BOARD OF COUNTY

COMMISSIONERS AND THE TOWN OF TIMNATH

(Poudre River Regional Wastewater Study)

A95-127 AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE BOARD OF COUNTY

COMMISSIONERS AND THE SOUTH FORT COLLINS

SANITATION DISTRICT (Same as Above)

A95-128 MEMORANDUM OF AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE BOARD

OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS AND THE NORTH FRONT

RANGE WATER QUALITY PLANNING ASSOCIATION

(Payment Process for Distribution of Grant Funds Regarding the

Poudre River Regional Wastewater Study)

C95-63 GRANT CONTRACT BETWEEN THE BOARD OF COUNTY

COMMISSIONERS (Poudre River Regional Wastewater Study)

R95-178s FINDINGS AND RESOLUTION NAMING A PREVIOUSLY

UNNAMED STREET NORTH OF INTERSECTION OF COUNTY

ROAD 23E AND COUNTY ROAD 56E

R95-179s FINDINGS AND RESOLUTION GRANTING THE VACATION OF

UTILITY EASEMENT IN NAMAQUA HILLS LOT 53

Motion carried 2 - 0.

The meeting adjourned at 11:00 a.m.

______________________________________

JIM DISNEY, CHAIR

BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS

( S E A L )

ATTEST:

_____________________________________

Sherry E. Graves, Deputy County Clerk

_____________________________________

Aimee Jensen, Deputy County Clerk

November 20, 1995

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