Elk in Rocky Mountain National Park
 

LARIMER COUNTY ENVIRONMENTAL ADVISORY BOARD (EAB)

 MEETING MINUTES

July 9, 2013

 

 

Members In Attendance:

 

Guests:

Cassie Archuleta

 

Matt Lafferty, Planning Department

Melissa Chalona

 

Terry Gilbert, Community Development

Chase Eckerdt

 

 

Derek Esposito

 

Staff :

Michael Jones

 

Doug Ryan

Kimberly Karish

 

 

Evelyn King

 

 

Ryan McShane

 

 

Joseph Wilson

 

 

 

Introduction of Members and Guests:

Those in attendance introduced themselves. 

 

Discussion Items:

Growth Management Areas & Intergovernmental Agreements.

Matt Lafferty led a discussion about the County’s growth management areas (GMA), and the intergovernmental agreements (IGA) that have been developed with cities and towns.  The information presented to the EAB included the Growth Management Overlay Zone District regulation contained in the County’s land use code, the agreement with the Town of Windsor as an illustration of how the contracts are structured, and a map showing the Loveland and Fort Collins GMA boundaries. 

 

The IGAs are a cooperative planning tool intended to allow cities and towns to identify areas where they intend to grow and provide urban level services.  Properties that are not eligible for annexation that are located within an adopted GMA have the option to develop in the County at urban densities consistent with the city’s master plan in addition to retaining the option for lower density rural development as allowed by County zoning. 

 

If the County elected to implement land use regulations that were specific to one or more city GMA, the process for doing so would be to revise the Growth Management Overlay Zone District regulation.  This is considered a flexible approach because the overlay zone does not change the original underlying zone, but rather adds an additional level that applies to properties within the overlay zone.  A specific example could be to implement oil & gas regulations in a GMA that were consistent with the city’s standards. 

 

Status of city hydraulic fracking regulations.

Melissa Chalona presented information about regulations pertaining to oil & gas development and hydraulic fracking in the cities of Loveland and Fort Collins.  A handout was provided to outline the current status in each city.  The City of Loveland had adopted an ordinance that covers all oil and gas development (including fracking) within the City limits.  It outlines two broad options for oil and gas development: a Planning Commission permitting process with defined standards, and an alternative permitting process that can result in negotiated standards tailored to the specific situation.  The City of Fort Collins has a current moratorium on oil and gas development that expires on July 31.  The City Council does plan to consider a possible extension of that action.  Fort Collins has completed an Operator Agreement with Prospect Energy, which allows new operations to proceed and not be restricted by the moratorium.  A possible citizen initiative for a five year moratorium is currently subject to a signature drive. 

 

Annual member orientation. 

Doug Ryan provided an overview about the organization and function of the EAB.  That overview included a discussion of the County’s Administrative Policy for Boards and Commissions, the EAB bylaws, the annual report and work plan, and the Issue Index used for tracking topics that the Advisory Board has considered.

 

Ozone Air Quality Update.

Doug Ryan provided an update on ozone air quality issues.  That presentation included background information on the ozone air quality standard, the EPA risk assessment process for setting health-based standards, and monitoring results from the 2013 ozone season.  Ground level ozone is a form of air pollution that occurs in highest concentrations in the summer when hydrocarbon and nitrogen oxides emissions from transportation, industry and household sources react in the presence of heat and sunlight.  Ozone action alerts are issued by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment on days when weather conditions are expected to lead to increased ground-level ozone concentrations.  The Denver-Metro/North Front Range region is classified as a non-attainment area for ozone.  A number of strategies have been implemented in order to reduce ozone forming emissions.  Additional information about regional efforts to control ozone, and information about how to obtain air quality alerts is available at www.ozoneaware.org.

 

Chair’s Comments:

Melissa Chalona welcomed Chase Eckerdt to the EAB and thanked him for his interest in applying and serving. 

 

Approval of Minutes from March, May and June 2013:

The minutes for March and May were approved as presented.  The minutes for June were approved as revised.

 

Updates:  

Kimberly Karish noted that the Regional Watershed Supply Project is not longer being pursued, and can be marked as Inactive on the EAB Issue Index.

 

Michael Jones noted that an article in the Coloradoan newspaper describes how the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment is considering expanded rules related to air emissions from oil and gas development.  http://www.coloradoan.com/viewart/20130708/NEWS11/307080038/Colorado-eying-air-pollution-rules-drilling.

 

EAB Issue Index:

Doug Ryan will update the Issue Index related to the topics discussed at the meeting.

 

August Meeting Agenda:

Zoonosis, Our Lands Our Future Planning Process, Stewardship Awards

 

Adjourn:

The meeting ended at 8:40 PM

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