YVCF denies city's request

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The Yampa Valley Community Foundation denied the city's request to help streamline the city's process for deciding how to spend its community support dollars.

For more than a year and half, the city and community foundation have been working on a process that would have the community foundation recommend city funding for local nonprofits.

In a letter to the council, President and CEO Dianna Sutton wrote that the undertaking had put the community foundation at odds with its members.

"Misunderstanding persists regarding our motives. Without the wholehearted authority of council and greater participation from a more broad representation of the nonprofit community, the YVCF does not feel it is in its best interest, nor is the climate right to further develop the current proposed model for this calendar year," Sutton wrote.

At Tuesday's council meeting, Councilwoman Kathy Connell said she was disappointed to hear the community foundation's decision and asked the group to reconsider.

"It is just so important that we have a more objective way of dealing with community support," Connell said. "I was very hopeful and am very sad this is where we are."

Connell had recommended using the community foundation as a resource saying she wanted to depoliticize the council's annual decision on where it should spend its community support funding.

Traditionally, the city made that decision during its all-day budget hearing on the first Tuesday of October. In the past, council members had raised concerns about the amount of time it spent on the community support portion of the budget and the influence certain nonprofits had during that hearing.

"We don't think we are as good at it (as the community foundation)," Connell said.

The community foundation had come before the council a few months ago with a proposed plan based on the process used by Human Resource Coalition. That process would have divided the funding into four areas: social services, arts and culture, environment and education, and recreation.

Connell said the intent was to keep the HRC process in place, which is headed by Millie Beall, the executive director of the United Way. That process allocates money to social service organizations such as Advocates Against Battering and Abuse, First Impressions and Partners in Routt County.

The community foundation would have set up a process similar to what Beall used, Connell said, for the nonprofits the HRC did not cover, such as Routt County Humane Society, Steamboat Springs Arts Council and Historic Routt County!.

At Tuesday's meeting, Beall raised concerns that the proposal could change HRC's process and did not look at the involvement in the community. She also said more people needed to be involved in the discussions to change the process for the city's community support funding.

"It was unfortunate that the proposal had no input from any agencies," Beall said.

In other business:

n City Attorney Tony Lettunich said the city's recreational water rights application has received close to 20 statements of opposition. More than 10 of those filing statements of opposition oppose the city's application and the others filed to be kept informed of the city's process, Lettunich said. The end of February was the deadline for filing a statement of opposition to the city's recreational water right.

n The council approved the interview committee's nominations for a tax policy advisory group. The nine members are Jack Dysart, Audrey Enever, Wade Gebhardt, Scott Glackman, John Greig, Nancy Nagler, Kenneth Solomon, Richard Tremaine and Frederick Wolf.

The three alternates are James "Jake" Henry, Steve Lewis and Chloe Scholes. Scott Ford, who is a counselor at the Small Business Development Center at the Colorado Mountain College and a member of the Economic Development Council, was designated as a community resource representative.

n The city received a letter from Mount Werner Water and Sanitation District requesting that a city representative appear at a public hearing where the district will discuss annexing 37 acres that could be used to store public water.

City Manager Paul Hughes said the Steamboat Springs School District has expressed interest in buying a 4.82-acre portion of that property.

n The council agreed to write a letter to the Colorado Department of Transportation saying that before a traffic light is put in at the intersection of Dougherty Road and Stone Lane, the developers of Stone Lane should realign the road to the south to match with Dougherty Road.

The council's decision was sparked by the River Place Co-Housing project, on the east side of town. CDOT would not grant the developers a state highway access permit into the project until the city wrote a letter ensuring the intersection of Stone Lane and Dougherty Road would be aligned when a traffic signal was needed at that intersection.

n The council approved the final development plan for Eaglecrest, a development for 12 townhomes along Eagle Ridge Drive. The 12-units would total 39,000 square feet in four buildings.

n The council approved the development plan for converting a 1,500-square-foot commercial space that once housed Pet Kare Veterinarian Clinic into a small health club for Curves for Woman. The health club will be located in Sundance at Fish Creek.


-- To reach Christine Metz call 871-4229

or e-mail cmetz@steamboatpilot.com

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