Developers speak to board again

Hayden officials: Group isn't taking correct steps for plan

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— Once again, the Sunburst Ranch developers came.

"The reason we're here this evening is to discuss with you the revisions we have made to the concept plan based upon the input we have received since the first time we were here," said Peter Patten of Patten Associates Inc., development and land planning consultants.

But before Patten could say anything else at Thursday night's Hayden Town Board meeting about the planned 900-acre subdivision, Mayor Chuck Grobe stopped him.

"Wait," Grobe said. "You haven't presented this to the Planning Commission at all. So I have a real problem with us putting new input into this without hearing from our Planning Commission.

"I don't think it's fair to the Planning Commission. I don't think it's fair to the rest of the town that we start giving you input ahead of our procedures we have in place. To me, this is creating a serious breech in how we want to conduct business in the town of Hayden."

Trustee Ken Gibbon agreed with Grobe.

"The whole idea of having a planning board is so they can do the leg work and iron out the details," Gibbon said. "We take their consideration seriously, so try to sell them on the project.

"You're looking for a nod of approval from us so you can go to the Planning Commission and say, 'well, the board already said ...'"

Patten said he wasn't looking for votes or approvals.

"We just think you should see our plan before we spend a lot of money on a consultant," Patten said.

Patten's associate Tom Fox of 4S Development Ltd. and Fox Construction in Steamboat Springs, said he was "embarrassed about the situation."

"I want to apologize," Fox said. "This was never meant to be like this at all. We're just trying to communicate the best we can. Maybe we're trying to communicate too much. We basically just wanted to know whether you liked the idea or not."

After reiterating to the developers to go through the Planning Commission, Gibbon reminded everyone of Hayden's master plan that calls for development within the town limits before expanding outward. He invited the people of Hayden to come to Town Hall to read the master plan for a better understanding.

In other action Thursday night:

n An intergovernmental agreement was signed with the Craig Rural Fire Protection District to handle hazardous materials, as the district has Haz-Mat Technicians, personnel with special skills who are trained to take offensive actions to mitigate hazardous materials releases.

n Dan Miller was removed from the planning commission for lack of attendance, missing five consecutive meetings for personal reasons, Trustee Lorraine Johnson said.

n Karen Fox's resignation from the planning commission was accepted, as she stated in a letter to the commission that there might be a conflict of interest with her being a real estate broker.

n During public comments, resident Arthur Houk spoke out for the second time in previous weeks against the water tax increase, "mainly because it would scare people away from our fair city." Houk said water conservation would be a better solution, and for example, he said that turning off the shower when not actually using the water saves his family half the regular charges for water.

n Police Chief Jody Lenahan announced the purchase of a new Ford Explorer for the Hayden Police Department for just more than $22,000.

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