MINUTES OF THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS
Monday, October 13, 2008
LAND USE HEARING
The Board of County Commissioners met at 3:00 p.m. with Matt Lafferty, Principal Planner. Chair Gibson presided and Commissioners Eubanks and Rennels were present. Also present were: Larry Timm, Rob Helmick and Sean Wheeler, Planning Department; Christie Coleman, Engineering Department; Doug Ryan, Environmental Health Department; Jeannine Haag, Assistant County Attorney; and Melissa Lohry, Clerk to the Board.
Chair Gibson opened the meeting with the Pledge of Allegiance and asked for public comment on the County Budget, Land Use Code or Rubbish Ordinance. No one from the audience addressed the Board regarding any of these topics.
1. PEARL VISTA CONSERVATION DEVELOPMENT AGREEMENT AMENDMENT: Chair Gibson noted that the applicant requested the item be tabled until November 3, 2008, to allow more time for discussion with staff.
M O T I O N
Commissioner Rennels moved that the Board of County Commissioners table the Pearl Vista Conservation Development Agreement Amendment until November 13, 2008, at 3:00 p.m.
Motion Carried 3-0.
Chair Gibson noted that the following items were on consent and would not be discussed unless requested by the Board, staff, or members of the audience:
2. WESTVIEW RURAL LAND USE PLAN, TRACT 3, LOTS 4 AND 5 LOT CONSOLIDATION, FILE #08-S2825: This is a request to combine two contiguous lots, Tract 3, Lots 4 and 5 of the Westview Rural Land Use Plan, 98-RLP0021, into one lot. These lots are located at the addresses of 2219 Bee Lake Road and 2265 Bee Lake Road in Wellington. Lot 5 has an existing single-family residence and Lot 4 is currently a vacant lot that is under conservation easement held by the Legacy Land Trust. The zoning is O-Open. The surrounding property consists of other single-family residential lots and irrigated agricultural land that is protected from further development. The Westview Rural Land Use Plan (RLUP) received final approval on July 20, 1999, and was approved with three non-contiguous tracts containing eight lots total, three of the eight are residual lots. Lot 4 is 4.21 acres in size and Lot 5 is 4.12 acres in size.
With the original approval of the Westview RLUP, each lot was permitted to accommodate a single-family residence and accessory buildings. On October 13, 2000, Lot 4 was placed under conservation easement which removed the right to build a single-family residence on it. That easement is held by the Legacy Land Trust. In addition to the recorded easement, when the lots are combined with this lot consolidation, the right to build a single-family residence on Lot 4 will be permanently removed and Lot 5 will become the primary lot, containing the single-family residence. The right to build outbuildings on Lot 4 will remain in accordance with the Larimer County Land Use Code and the easement held by the Legacy Land Trust. The applicants are aware of the conservation easement restrictions.
Staff has found that the proposed lot consolidation will not adversely affect any neighboring properties, county agency, or the Legacy Land Trust. The lot consolidation will not result in any additional lots. Staff finds that the request meets the requirements of Section 5.7.3, of the Larimer County Land Use Code and recommends approval of the lot consolidation for Tract 3, Lots 4 and 5, Westview Rural Land Use Plan, 98-RLP0021, file # 08-S2825, subject to the following conditions:
1. All conditions of approval shall be met and the final resolution recorded by March 25, 2009, 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 reconfiguration of the lot lines shall be finalized at such time when the findings and resolution of the County Commissioners are recorded.
3. FORT COLLINS INDUSTRIAL PARK LOT 1 AMENDED PLAT/EASEMENT VACATION, FILE #08-S2826: This is a proposed plat amendment to adjust the lot line between two parcels and vacate an unused drainage easement in the Fort Collins Industrial Park, first filing. Staff has found the proposed amendment will not adversely affect any neighboring properties or any county agency, the amendment will not result in any additional lots, and the request meets the requirements of the Larimer County Land Use Code.
Staff recommends approval of the Amended Plat of Lot 1 of the Amended Plat of Lots 54, 55 and 56 of the Fort Collins Industrial Park First Filing and Lot 1 of the Amended Plat of Lot 2 and Lot 3 of the Amended Plat of Lots 54, 55, 56 of the Fort Collins Industrial Park First Filing. Staff also recommends approval of the Drainage Easement Vacation, 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 April 6, 2009, 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 the Land Surveyor of the Larimer County Engineering Department.
3. Prior to the recordation of the final plat, the applicant shall show easements on the plat for the existing water, sewer and gas service lines. Easements shall be approved by utility companies for adequacy prior to recordation of the plat.
4. Property owners shall finalize any outstanding building permits and apply for any change of occupancy permits prior to recordation of the final plat.
4. ROBBS MINOR RESIDENTIAL DEVELOPMENT LOT 2 AMENDED PLAT/EASEMENT VACATION, FILE 08-S2829: This is a request to amend the plat of the Robbs Minor Residential Development (MRD) to remove a condition of approval regarding use of a road easement and vacate the road easement. The Robbs MRD was approved in 1995 and at that time the two lots also received a variance which allowed the two 3+ acre lots in the MRD. At the time of approval, a condition was added which required joint access be established when a new residence was built on either of the lots. The two residences existed at the time and the MRD created separate lots for each home. The applicants are now requesting the condition be removed so that they may move forward with plans to either repair or replace the existing home.
Staff recommends approval of the Robbs MRD Lot 2 Amended Plat/Easement Vacation, file # 08-S2829, and vacation of the common access easement located on the common lot line, subject to the following condition(s):
1. All conditions of the approval shall be met and the final plat recorded by April 2, 2009, or this approval shall be null and void.
2. The vacation of the utility easement shall be finalized at such time when the findings and resolution of the County Commissioners are recorded.
3. A common access will be required if further subdivision of the site is proposed.
M O T I O N
Commissioner Eubanks moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the Consent Agenda for October 13, 2008.
Motion carried 3-0.
5. RUBBISH ORDINANCE AMENDMENT 1ST READING: This is the first reading of the proposed amendments to the existing Rubbish Ordinance. Larimer County Ordinance No. 04212008-001 Concerning Accumulation and Removal of Rubbish (“Rubbish Ordinance”), effective May 24, 2008, was adopted, in part, to streamline an enforcement process for complaints associated with rubbish, derelict/unlicensed vehicles, illegal outdoor storage and other junk. An appeal process to notices of violation issued pursuant to the Rubbish Ordinance was not included in the Ordinance.
Based on current case law, the County Attorney’s Office recommends the Rubbish Ordinance be amended to include an appeal process to notices of violations issued under the Ordinance. Ms. Haag read the amended portion of the Rubbish Ordinance as written below:
Sec. 30-256 Notice of Violation/ Hearing:
If probable cause exists to believe that a violation of this Ordinance has occurred, notice of the violation shall be sent by the Planning and Building Services Division Director, or his/her designee as follows:
(1) Written notice of the violation shall be sent via first class mail to the property owner at the address listed in the records of the Larimer County Assessor’s Office and to the mailing address of the property if such address is different from the address in the Assessor’s records.
(2) The notice shall:
a. Provide a description of the violation and measures required to correct the violation.
b. Require that the violation be corrected within 30 days after the date of the notice unless the Planning and Building Services Division Director, or his/her designees, determines in his/her sole discretion, that a longer time should be allowed, or that a shorter time is justified because the violation appears to present an immediate risk to the public health, welfare or safety.
c. Include a statement that if the property owner believes that notice has been issued in error or without just cause, the property owner may request in writing, no later than seven business days after the date of the notice, a hearing before the Board of County Commissioners in order to obtain a written determination from the Board whether the condition of the property violates this Ordinance.
(3) The date of any requested hearing shall be as soon as practicable considering the Board’s calendar. Written notice of the date of the hearing shall be sent via first class mail to the property owner at least seven business days prior to the date of the hearing.
(4) At the hearing, the Board will receive relevant information from the property owner and others bearing on the issue of whether the condition of the property violates this Ordinance. The property owner shall have the burden to show by a preponderance of the evidence that the property does not violate this Ordinance.
(5) The Board will provide a written determination within ten  days of the hearing. If the Board determines the condition of the property violates this Ordinance, the Board shall set the date by which the violation must be corrected. The Board’s determination is final and appealable only through applicable civil court procedures.
Sec. 30-257 Administrative Entry and Seizure Warrant:
If the violation of this Ordinance is not fully corrected within the time period established in the written notice of violation, or within the time period established in the Board’s written determination if a hearing was requested, the Planning and Building Services Division Director, or his/her designee, without further notice to the property owner, may initiate proceedings for an administrative entry and seizure warrant through the district or county court of Larimer County authorizing the County to enter the Property and remove the rubbish. In seeking an administrative and seizure warrant, a sworn or affirmed affidavit shall be presented to the court which sets forth the factual basis for the warrant as follows: (i) a general description of the location of the property, (ii) a general description of any rubbish to be removed from the property, (iii) evidence that the property owner has received notice of the violation and has failed to abate the violation within the time prescribed by such notice, and (iv) a proposal about whether the rubbish to be removed should be disposed of or temporarily impounded.
(1) Execution of warrant. Within ten days following the date of issuance of an administrative entry and seizure warrant, the county, by and through county forces, contract, agent or otherwise, shall execute the warrant in accordance with the directions of the issuing court. A copy of the issued warrant shall be provided or mailed to the property owner. Proof of the execution of such warrant, including a written inventory of any property impounded by the executing authority, shall be submitted to the court by the county.
(2) Disposal and impoundment. Any rubbish removed pursuant to an administrative entry and seizure warrant shall be dealt with in accordance with the terms of such warrant, including the impoundment of rubbish and/or the disposal of rubbish in the manner specified by the court in the warrant.
(3) Costs of removal. All reasonable costs associated with the removal of rubbish, and impoundment if ordered by the court, shall be paid by the property owner, including an additional five percent of such costs for inspection of the property and incidental expenses. A bill of costs shall be mailed to the property owner and payment in full shall be due within 15 days of the date of the bill. In the event that the bill remains unpaid after 15 days, the costs may be assessed as a lien against the property until paid and shall have priority over all other liens except general taxes and prior special assessments. If the costs remain unpaid after 90 days from the date of the bill, such costs together with a ten percent penalty for collection expenses shall be certified to the Larimer County Treasurer for collection in the same manner as other taxes are collected. The laws of the State of Colorado for assessment and collection of general taxes, including the laws for the sale and redemption of property taxes, shall apply to the collection of assessments pursuant to this section 2-397. (Ord. No. 04212008O001, § 7, 4-21-2008)
Mr. Timm noted that this is the first reading of the proposed amendments and there will be a second reading to follow, at which time the Board will take public comment on the proposed changes.
6. LETTIS RIDGE ESTATES SUBDIVISION PRELIMINARY PLAT, FILE #08-S2769: This is a request to subdivide approximately 13 acres into two lots for single-family residential uses. The subject property is in an area of varying sized rural, residential lots. An existing single-family home is shown on proposed Lot 2 at the north end of the site. The new lots will be 4.93 and 8.06 acres in size. The applicants propose accessing both properties from Sunbird Lane. Both lots will be on public water provided by the Little Thompson Water District, and use septic systems already in place. The Sweck Lateral Irrigation Ditch runs along the north property line on the proposed Lot 2, near the existing residence. Typically, septic systems are required to be at least 100 feet from an irrigation ditch. In this situation, the septic system is in place and the ditch is at a higher elevation than the residential use so no impact is anticipated.
This item was removed from the Consent Agenda because during the Planning Commission Hearing on September 17, 2008, adjoining property owners voiced concern about access to the properties and drainage related issues. Discussion focused on some of the technical elements of these concerns and it was determined that access from Sunbird Lane was the safest option, and drainage problems could be resolved and reflected on the final plat.
Staff recommends that the Lettis Ridge Estates Subdivision, file #08-S2769, request to subdivide approximately 13 acres into two lots for single-family residential use, be approved subject to the following conditions:
1. The final plat shall be consistent with the information contained in the file, #08-S2769, or as modified by conditions of approval.
2. The following fees shall be collected at the time of building permit for new single-family dwellings: the Thompson School fees in lieu of dedication, the Larimer County Capital Transportation Expansion fee and the Larimer County Park Fee in lieu of dedication. The fee amount that is current at the time building permit application shall apply.
3. The applicant shall sign a Final Development Agreement, to be prepared by Staff and approved by the County Attorney, which details in standard language the conditions of approval and other important information related to the Subdivision.
4. The applicant shall sign a Final Disclosure Notice for approval by the County to be recorded with the final plat. This notice will 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 must include, but is not limited to; all issues related to rural development; the requirement for engineered footings and foundations and the requirement for passive radon mitigation. Other items raised in the review, or related to compliance with the Larimer County Land Use Code, may also be included.
5. The applicant’s shall provide an Access Easement Agreement for the remaining properties that take access off the drive for review and approval by the County Attorney during the final plat review.
6. For exterior lighting, all lots are required to use shields that direct lighting downward to minimize lighting impacts off-site.
7. Basements will not be allowed on Lot 1 unless a minimum 3-foot separation between the lowest floor elevation (including basements) and groundwater can be established at time of building permit application. The submitted geotechnical report indicated that ground water is approximately 10 feet below grade on this lot.
8. The applicant shall repair existing roadway deficiencies such as potholes in Sunbird Lane. Collateral for these improvements shall be included in the Opinion of Costs provided for the Development Agreement, or through some other mechanism acceptable to both the applicant and the County Engineering Department.
Chair Gibson opened the hearing for public comment and Jim Bunkers addressed the Board on behalf of the applicants, Jim and Melissa Lettis. Mr. Bunkers stated that the applicants were in agreement with staff and accepted the conditions of the approval.
Commissioner Eubanks noted that the subdivision was recommended for approval by the Planning Commission by a vote of 8-0.
M O T I O N
Commissioner Rennels moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the Lettis Ridge Estates Subdivision Preliminary Plat, file #08-S2769, subject to the conditions listed above.
Motion carried 3-0.
There being no further business, the hearing recessed at 3:15 p.m.
LAND USE HEARING
The Board of County Commissioners reconvened at 6:30 p.m. with Matt Lafferty, Principal Planner. Chair Gibson presided and Commissioners Eubanks and Rennels were present. Also present were: Frank Lancaster, County Manager; Linda Hoffman and Sean Wheeler, Planning Department; Traci Shambo, Engineering Department; Doug Ryan, Environmental Health Department; Bob Herrfeldt, Fairgrounds and Event Center Director; Rosemary Prawdzik, The Ranch; Tim Palmer, Sheriff’s Department; Jeannine Haag, Assistant County Attorney; and Melissa Lohry, Clerk to the Board.
1. THE 960 RURAL LAND USE PLAN, FILE #08-S2808: Ms. Hoffman addressed the Board and noted that the applicants requested that the item be postponed until further notice to allow further discussion between the applicant and staff.
M O T I O N
Commissioner Eubanks moved that the 960 Rural Land Use Plan, file #08-S2808, be tabled until further notice.
Motion carried 3-0.
Chair Gibson asked for public comment on the County Budget, Land Use Code or Rubbish Ordinance. No one from the audience addressed the Board regarding any of these topics.
Chair Gibson asked for general public comment and Ed Honebein, owner of Hawg Wild Custom Cycles in Loveland, addressed the Board regarding a problem he encountered while attempting to schedule an event at The Ranch. Mr. Honebein stated that he called The Ranch in May 2008, to inquire about the availability of dates in November to hold his annual motorcycle show and swap meet. By the end of May Mr. Honebein had reserved the complex for November 15 and 16, 2008, and submitted a deposit. In mid October he received a check for the amount of his deposit and a letter from staff at The Ranch stating that his event could not be accommodated in Larimer County in November or at anytime in the future. Due to the timing of this notification, Mr. Honebein has already advertised the event and is expecting vendors from across the United States.
When Mr. Honebein called Mr. Herrfeldt for further information, he was told the event was refused for two reasons, 1) the inability to guarantee stolen parts would not be sold at the event, 2) his website featured pictures of known biker gangs operating booths at previous occurrences of the event. Mr. Honebein stated that he had been hosting the swap meet for 23 years in Boulder County and decided to host the event in Larimer County this year because of the availability of facilities and their proximity to his home and work. Since 1985, he has experienced only infrequent, minor problems at the events and has always been very cooperative with the Boulder County Sheriff’s Department. Mr. Honebein presented a letter to this effect from the Boulder County Sheriff’s Department as well as two other letters in support of his motorcycle show and swap meet.
Commissioner Eubanks asked Mr. Honebein to explain the timeline of events. Mr. Honebein stated that he first contacted Rosemary Prawdzik in early May and placed his reservation for November 15 and 16, 2008. Near the end of May, Ms. Prawdzik visited his motorcycle shop and assisted him in completing a required promoter application. On October 2, 2008, he received the aforementioned check and letter of refusal.
Ms. Prawdzik addressed the Board and stated the timeline Mr. Honebein presented was correct. She informed the Board that she had trouble contacting Mr. Honebein in early May, which resulted in her visit to his shop, and that she had not been able to contact Mr. Honebein via email or telephone since.
Mr. Herrfeldt addressed the Board and stated that the reason The Ranch had refused this event was not because of anything Mr. Honebein had done but rather due to the type of event proposed. Mr. Herrfeldt stated that he consulted Lieutenant Palmer about the swap meet and after some research, it was determined that the event was not appropriate for The Ranch.
Lt. Palmer addressed the Board and explained that he had spoken with an expert in stolen motorcycle parts, who told him that events of this type were usually saturated with stolen motorcycles and parts. Lt. Palmer also investigated Mr. Honebein’s events and discovered that proclaimed “outlaw-gangs” were permitted to rent booth space and, Lt. Palmer assumed, promote their illegal activities. Lt. Palmer had contacted the Boulder County Sheriff’s Department and was told the department had no notable complaints against Mr. Honebein’s events.
Commissioner Eubanks questioned Lt. Palmer about the difference between similar types of events, such as Thunder in the Rockies, and Mr. Honebein’s event. It was determined that stolen parts and motorcycle gangs had most likely been present at similar events held in the past. After discussion between the Board, Mr. Herrfeldt and Ms. Prawdzik, it was determined that communication problems existed on both sides of this issue which resulted in the late notification of cancellation. It was also determined that the dates originally reserved by Mr. Honebein were still available.
Chair Gibson opened the hearing to additional public comment and Tom Blake, owner of Blake Jewelry, George Massey and Linda McCartney, publisher of a Colorado motorcycle magazine, all spoke in favor of Mr. Honebein and his events. All had attended the events held in Boulder County and noted the family friendly environment.
The Board determined that the event was compatible with the desired atmosphere at The Ranch. Therefore, Mr. Herrfeldt stated he would work with the Sheriff’s Department to schedule the event, ensure the safety of everyone who attends and limit illegal activity during the event.
2. FORBES RANCH ESTATES AMENDED 2ND SUBDIVISION, FILE #04-S2335: This is a request for approval to amend the Forbes Ranch Estates Amended 2nd Subdivision Plat, by changing the designation of Lot 6 from a “Recreation Lot” to a “Non-Buildable Out Lot.” This item was on the Board of County Commissioners discussion agenda for the September 8, 2008, public hearing. Discussion focused on the status of the lots platted designation and its buildable status. A perspective buyer discussed his interest in purchasing the lot but not developing it. Various homeowners also discussed their interest in the site becoming open space for use by the entire subdivision. Because not all interested parties could attend the hearing, the decision was made to table the item to a later date for further discussion.
Chair Gibson asked the applicant, Mark Buckley, to explain why he had requested the amendment to the plat. Mr. Buckley stated that currently the lot is designated as a “Recreational Lot” but no definition of the uses allowed by this designation is available. Therefore, he wishes only to update the designation of Lot 6 from a “Recreational Plot” to an “Out Lot” so that he may sell it to an adjacent land owner, Landis Parsons.
Chair Gibson opened the hearing for public comment and Thomas Moore, attorney for Mr. Parsons, stated that he advised his client not to purchase the lot because a definition of “Recreation Lot” does not exist.
Lori Jones, homeowner in the Forbes Ranch Estates Subdivision, addressed the board and asked that they not change the designation because the lot was intended by the developer to be left undeveloped and open to recreational use by homeowner.
Commissioner Rennels clarified, for the record, the reason the previous hearing had been postponed was so that the entire Board could be present to vote on the issue. Commissioner Rennels also stated she felt that as long as the lot remained unbuildable, she was not opposed to changing the designation to “Out Lot.” Chair Gibson and Commissioner Eubanks agreed.
M O T I O N
Commissioner Rennels moved that the Board of County Commissioners approve the Forbes Ranch Estates Amended 2nd Subdivision, file #04-S2335, to redesignate Lot 6 as a non-buildable Out Lot.
Motion carried 3-0.
GLENN W. GIBSON, CHAIR
BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
CLERK AND RECORDER
Melissa E. Lohry, Deputy Clerk