Growth group criteria picked

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After discussing what the focus of a growth management advisory group should be, City Council members and county commissioners decided who the group should represent.

The officials, who met Tuesday, said they wanted to see representatives from the city and county planning commissions, the Yampa Valley Housing Authority, the city and county communities, the city and county service industries, as well as two representatives from other municipalities, a second-home owner and an at-large member.

The growth management advisory group is an offshoot of the Steamboat Springs Community Area Plan and is borne out of the controversy the growth-management issue stirred during the plan's adoption.

The interview committee of county commissioners Doug Monger and Dan Ellison and City Council members Kathy Connell and Susan Dellinger will recommend the makeup and members of the growth group to their respective boards. They decided to have the planning commissions and the housing authority appoint their representatives.

Monger said the group should solicit the towns of Hayden and Oak Creek and other Routt County municipalities for representatives.

The group also discussed the need for a second-home owner, looking at the logistics of whether a part-time resident could serve on a board that lasted more than six months. Connell said it was a way to engage a portion of the community that also would be affected by growth.

The group looked at a list of 18 applicants for the group and noted that many would fit into more than one of the criteria.

The list of applicants is Lynn Abbott, Jodee Anderson, Will Bashan, Diane Bower, John Fielding, Greg Forney, Wayne Kakela, Kryill Kretzschmar, Steve Lewis, James Moylan, Ann Oliver, Stuart Orzach, Sandra Sherrod Pflieger, Christi Ruppe, John Spezia, Norbert Turek, Marcus Williams and Robert Wilmoth.

Seven of the applicants are or were members of the Community Alliance of the Yampa Valley, a group that aims to ensure more organized and effective community input on growth and environmental issues. Applicants also include those in the building, construction and real estate industries.

The group agreed to hold interviews for all applicants. The first set of interviews is scheduled for Sept. 16, and the second is set for Sept. 20.

The majority of Tuesday's hour-long meeting was spent discussing the advisory board's intent.

Connell said a narrow focus and condensed information was essential to the success of the group. She pointed to the large amount of information and short period of time the council gave the Tax Policy Advisory Group as a method not to follow.

"If we are not specific on the scope of work, they get really frustrated," Connell said.

Officials determined that while the board will be given its task -- providing recommendations on growth-management measures -- as stipulated by wording in the community plan, it could ask for a longer time frame than the stipulated six months.

County Planner John Eastman said that to met the six-month time frame, one full-time staff person and an outside facilitator would be required and the group would have to hold retreat-like meetings for six to eight hours. A yearlong process would be a more reasonable time frame, Eastman said.

"Its just two to three months to get the information to them, before they can even start thinking about it," Eastman said.

The group agreed to keep the six-month period, but said the group could come back to ask for an extension if it thought the time was too short.

Dellinger asked whether other discussions should be put on hold as the group works on its recommendations.

"How important is it?" Dellinger asked. "Is it important enough to put a moratorium in until the group is done."

Even though the group's work is important, Connell said, it shouldn't stop the progress of other issues. The group did say the growth advisory group should look at the West of Steamboat Springs Area Plan, which is largely where new growth is planned.

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