City won't appeal deannexation

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The city of Steamboat Springs had decided not to appeal a District Court decision allowing Walter Scott to deannex 180 acres from the city.

The city has agreed to continue working with Scott to see whether the two parties can acquire easements from each other on adjacent parcels, which sit next to the Steamboat Springs Airport and in the West of Steamboat Springs Plan.

After a two-day hearing, District Court Judge Michael O'Hara said Sept. 9 that Scott could disconnect the land from the city on the basis that the city had not provided water and sewer services to the land.

The City Council had 45 days to file an appeal and agreed at a Nov. 16 council meeting not to do so, finalizing the deannexation. By disconnecting from the city, Scott can divide the Patricia Ann Scott Partnership parcel into five, 35-acre lots and sell them. If the land had stayed a part of the city, Scott said he would have developed more than 100 lots.

In the September court trial, Scott reasoned he should deannex from the city because officials had refused to serve his land with sewer and water after repeated requests. Scott said he had spent more than $100,000 trying to extend city services to his land.

Being outside the city limits, Scott does not have to install water and sewer infrastructure or follow more stringent city guidelines.

The council directed city staff to continue working on negotiations over easements on the two adjacent parcels.

City Attorney Tony Lettunich said the city would like an easement on Scott's land that would allow the city to build a road that would serve as a northern connector for development west of Steamboat. The road, which is intended to be a main artery, is proposed to run from Slate Creek near Sleepy Bear Mobile Home Park through the Steve and Mary Brown property, city property and across Scott's property. The road is proposed to connect to Routt County Road 44.

In exchange for the Scott easement, Lettunich said city officials would be willing to allow Scott a better easement through the city's property and to C.R. 44.

When the city condemned Scott's property for expansion of the Steamboat Springs Airport in 1991 and then sold the land back to him, it did so with an easement through the city's property.

-- To reach Christine Metz call 871-4229

or e-mail cmetz@steamboatpilot.com

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