Steamboat Springs About 12 people from the community showed up at Olympian Hall Monday night to hear a discussion about the city's new Community Development Code that ranged from the ideologically vast (growth) to the physically minute (garage sales).
Amid heated discussions about the large issues of the code, such as the development review process and the proposed architectural review board, local lawyer Bob Weiss noted that, under the new code, a person interested in holding a garage sale would have to shell out more than $500 to get an administrative permit. Weiss was attempting to show the city that small items need to be reviewed to ensure the city gets what it intended out of the code.
Planning Director Wendie Schulenberg and Planner Tracey Hughes both noted the city had taken issues like the $500 garage sale into account already and would soon match new terms with old definitions. Needless to say, the city had no intentions of charging people half a grand to sell off their old corduroys.
"No matter how hard you try, there are going to be unintended mistakes," said Don Elliott, the vice president of the consulting group Clarion and Associates.
Planning staff thanked the people who spoke, many of whom, such as Weiss, offered friendly advice and criticism but wondered where the rest of the public was.
"While we do need to address some of the problems, we also got feedback to the effect that we're moving in the right direction," Schulenberg said.
"I was surprised by the lack of participation," she added.
The department will take the comments made in these meetings and place them in a matrix to present to City Council when it begins to mull over the decisions it will have to make regarding the code.
Many of the comments at the meeting focused on issues of growth. Growth, which was first brought up by Bob Enever at a meeting last week, is not specifically addressed in the new code.
Planning staff has repeatedly asserted that the CD Code is not the forum for growth-management. Issues of growth should be addressed in the new Community Plan, slated to be completed this year, Schulenberg said.
But members of the crowd, such as Stuart Orzach, called on the city's elected and appointed officials to try to stem the tide of growth as the new CD Code becomes easier to navigate.
Councilman Ken Brenner asked his fellow council members to look seriously at this issue.
"If not now, when are we going to begin this debate?" he asked.