Town Board approves pond construction

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A bulldozer likely will be in action today immediately south of Hayden Valley Elementary School on Poplar Street as developer Paul Flood gets back to work on a pond he is building for a residential subdivision there.

Flood began building the pond three weeks ago with the notion that he had all the permits he needed to proceed with the project. However, he did not have permission from the town, as only a sketch plan for his subdivision, "The Meadow," was approved at the time.

Since then, the Hayden Planning Commission approved the preliminary plat for the subdivision with several conditions. One of the conditions was that Flood come before the Town Board to request a conditional-use permit to complete the pond because the unfinished pond could pose a safety threat during the winter.

The Hayden Town Board approved that permit Thursday night, but also brought up many of its own concerns, similar to those expressed by the Planning Commission in previous meetings. The main concern expressed by Town Board members and several Hayden residents was what would happen if the pond's dam burst and flooded the subdivision or other nearby residences.

Patty Bennett, who lives across the street from the planned development, said she was concerned she may have to purchase flood insurance. Flood said that would not be necessary. Beside having several engineers tell him that chances of a break in the dam are slim and none, he said the pond would be covered by insurance within the subdivision's homeowners association.

The Town Board and Flood agreed that when the final plat for the subdivision is approved, it should have language thoroughly explaining what would happen in the event of a leak in the pond or an accident there.

In other business:

n The Town Board approved raising its water rates for 2004, which will raise rates about $3 per average customer, Town Clerk Lisa Johnston said.

n Hayden Chamber of Commerce members Don Johnson and Jack Giessinger asked the Town Board to consider reinstating Hayden's Economic Development Council as an arm of the Town Board. Johnson said bringing back the EDC makes sense, and the town should consider advertising to solicit letters of interest from Hayden residents to serve on the council. The Town Board agreed to begin advertising soon.

n The Town Board authorized Hayden resident Richard Bush as an official town volunteer to build and maintain a cross country ski trail in the planned area for Dry Creek Park. Bush needed this authorization in order to be covered by the town's liability insurance.

n The Town Board canceled its Jan. 1 meeting.

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