Steamboat Springs developer Jim Cook and his investment partners have entered into a contract to purchase Dream Island Mobile Home Park. About 80 homes are in Dream Island, which is along the Yampa River on Steamboat's west side.

Photo by Matt Stensland

Steamboat Springs developer Jim Cook and his investment partners have entered into a contract to purchase Dream Island Mobile Home Park. About 80 homes are in Dream Island, which is along the Yampa River on Steamboat's west side.

Dream Island under contract

Jim Cook and Green Courte Partners plan affordable housing on site

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Dream Island Mobile Home Park resident Kyle Badertscher talks about trailers neighboring his on the west end of the property. Badertscher bought his trailer six months ago and initially was concerned when he found out about the potential sale of the mobile-home park. "We'll have to see how this pans out," he said.

— Developer Jim Cook confirmed Thursday that Green Courte Partners has placed Dream Island Mobile Home Park under a purchase contract and intends to use the site for deed-restricted, affordable housing.

The deal has not been consummated.

"Our job is to try and make the current renters owners," Cook said. "It's not set in stone how we'll accomplish that, but I think we can make it happen. I think we can be very creative."

Dream Island is nestled between U.S. Highway 40 and the Yampa River on the west side of Steamboat Springs. There are more than 80 homes in the park, Cook said. He did not divulge the contracted purchase price.

The current owner is Front Range firm Colorado Real Estate Investment Co., or CREICO. Typical lot rent is $530 a month, according to residents.

CREICO Chief Financial Officer John Eberle said his company had been quietly marketing the mobile-home park, which it has owned for about 15 years.

"We get approached from time to time on that property and, in this case, we decided to test the market," Eberle said. "We put together a packet and sent it to a few parties."

Dream Island resident Moose O'Malia was skeptical about Green Courte's plans to keep Dream Island a mobile-home park and lamented the changes Cook and Green Courte already have brought to Steamboat's downtown.

"This is prime real estate on the river," O'Malia said. "I'm on welfare and food stamps and can barely afford to live here now. Keep all the large (developments) out at the mountain and keep Old Town, Old Town."

Green Courte, based in Chicago, is the investment partner in three major downtown Steamboat Springs developments incorporating residential and commercial space. Those projects include Howelsen Place and Alpenglow, nearing completion on Lincoln Avenue. A third, River Walk, has not broken ground but would occupy the site of the former Westland Mobile Home Park.

Cook said Dream Island would help his development team meet the affordable housing requirements mandated by city ordinance.

Residents respond

The development team has not made any decisions, Cook said, but one possibility is gradually replacing Dream Island's older mobile homes with new mobile homes and giving current residents the first opportunity to buy them. They also are contemplating offering owners a 99-year lease on their lots, which would make it possible to get financing and afford residents increased security.

Dream Island resident Tracy Delli Quadri would be happy to see her mobile home bulldozed if she could be assured of remaining at Dream Island, she said. Delli Quadri, who has lived in Steamboat since she was three months old, operates a licensed home child care business and is a respite care foster parent who is called on in crisis.

"I love living here," she said. "I just don't love my little house. My neighbors are quiet, and it's a perfect location for what I do."

Jay Mogil is a Dream Island resident and also operates a camera and electronics business in one of a few commercial spaces occupying an old motel at Dream Island.

On Thursday, Mogil said he was taking a delegation of fellow Dream Island residents to meet with Cook in the evening, at Cook's invitation.

"I hope Jim Cook's goals for Dream Island to remain an affordable mobile-home park come to full fruition so that as many of the current residents as possible can remain here," Mogil said. "I hope that we're able to keep an affordable housing neighborhood viable in this town and that people can see that this is an opportunity to build equity (in their homes) that they might not otherwise have."

Upgrades intended

O'Malia, 74, has a beautifully cared for home with shrubs and trees she has planted and containers of pansies that already are thriving.

She said she is worried that if she needs to sell her home someday to be able to afford supported living, her 35-year-old trailer won't attract a buyer because Cook's group would replace it with a newer home.

Cook said he and his partners intend to improve conditions in the mobile-home park.

"I think I can assure everyone it will not be kept in its current state," he said.

Better streets, landscaping, streetlights and tighter oversight of neighborhood covenants are all a possibility, Cook said.

Green Courte's profile in Steamboat is one of a luxury residential and commercial builder. However, Cook said the company has financial ties to a manufacturer of mobile homes. Green Courte announced this month that it was named "Manufactured Home Community Operator of the Year" at a convention for the manufactured housing industry. The company release states that Green Courte helped to found the Urban Land Institute's Manufactured Housing Community Council, and has promoted long-term leases throughout the industry.

Cook sees Dream Island as an ideal place for deed-restricted, affordable housing.

"What better place?" he asked, "than a place that's within walking distance of downtown, already has a park in place and where trails already exist."

Comments

id04sp 6 years, 7 months ago

As the snow flies . . . .(deedle deedle dum) . . . On a cold and gray Steamboat morn, Another little hungry child is born, In the ghetto . . . (in the ghetto . . . )

And his mother cries (deedle deedle dum) . . . Cause if there's one thing that she don't need, It's an overcrowded condo with a restricted deed, In the ghetto . . . (in the ghetto . . . ) . . .

People don't you understand, It's the cost of resort town land. He's gonna be an angry young man some day, 'Cause when he grows up, He'll find out, he's stuck. Our prices will be so damn high, So that if she sells, then she can't buy . . .

And the developer (deedle deedle dum . . . ) He takes the money and he runs, And the realtors stick, To their guns, In the ghetto . . . (deedle deedle dum) In the ghetto . . . (deedle deedle dum) In the ghetto . . . (deedle deedle dum) . . . . .

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80488mom 6 years, 7 months ago

ID - well done....has a beat.......I think I could dance to it. I'll give it a 10.

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spukomy 6 years, 7 months ago

The reason Jim Cook wants to buy DI is to appease Affordable Housing contracts he had already agreed to, and is now backing out of. He is obligated to provide some of his downtown condos to the HA. Now, he wants to sell the condos high, keep that $, and throw the HA a bone .

There wasn't one representative from the City, City Council, or Housing Authority at this meeting.

Right now DI has 85ish homes. In order for Jim Cook to accomplish his dreams downtown, and while blowing off his promises, he will again displace many of our communities' workforce.

Jim Cook was awarded 2007 Business Man Of The Year.

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bloggyblog 6 years, 7 months ago

blog thinks if the developers follow through on their word and maintain dream island as affordable housing, this could be a good thing. but given recent events and the changing climate of steamboat, blogs a bit sceptical. p.s. id, your song might seem witty to you but i seriously doubt any of the real locals who live in dream island are laughing.

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Jason Miller 6 years, 7 months ago

You know what im going to do.After i make my first million im moving to steamboat and buying a trailer from Jim Cook.

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snowysteamboat 6 years, 7 months ago

Spukomy-

You are incorrect. Mr. Cook has obligations for AH that are being maintained.

Do you have a source for assertion or are you just using you pie hole to spread misinformation?

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middleclass 6 years, 7 months ago

Hmmmmm.......And just how well did that work out with the last trailer park Jim Cook got his fingers on? Wake up Dream Island. There is only one message and only one outcome here. That's prime real estate you poor people are sitting on.

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bcpow 6 years, 7 months ago

Prime real estate that could could be sitting under a couple feet of water in the next week.

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OnTheBusGus 6 years, 7 months ago

A friend of mine and I looked at a doublewide in DI as an investment/rental property. The salesman who worked for the owners said that they would never sell since the place since it was such a "cash cow" to them. As the last few years have gone by and real estate has increased in value I have often wondered when the market value of DI would be high enough that the owners would decide to cash out. I guess that time is now. The sad part is that some people who own there have that trailer and that's all. They have been there so long and the trailer is old, they will have to give it away or pay to have it removed (although it would be nice if Mr Cook would do that!) Sure they may get first dibs on the "affordable" housing that will replace their trailer but can they afford it? Just another instance of more locals going bye-bye...

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id04sp 6 years, 7 months ago

Bloggy,

Who's being witty? Don't you know a protest song when you see it?

The real folly in all we see, hear and read about this issue is that poor people are sometimes poor for reasons beyond their control, but being poor because of insisting on living in a high-cost area instead of moving to a place where your labor will buy a decent standard of living is just about the stupidest thing I've ever heard of.

Hey, I OWN a paid-for house in this county, and I'm having a real hard time convincing myself that enjoying living here is worth all the crap we put up with. I can have a nicer home on more land in a cheaper cost-of-living area and pocket 2/3 to 3/4 of the money I'd make by selling the place. Just the interest on the profit would be plenty to take some nice month-long skiing vacations and not be stuck on a single hill for the rest of my life.

People were born with feet because we evolved to move around in search of food and shelter. Nobody here has roots so deep they can't be transplanted to another area, live better, have more, and enjoy life just as much. Routt County is getting to be like a Cadillac Escalade with gold trim and those funky rapper wheels; just a status symbol for people who want to be seen spending money. For the average, sensible middle class person who has to work for a living, it's dumb to be here. There are plenty of safe, small towns around with just as many advantages, but no ski hill. It's something to think about.

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fish 6 years, 7 months ago

I am not at all suprised by the news. We all knew that this has been coming for a long time. Residents of Sleepy Bear had better wake up and smell the coffee because they are next. I can't think of anyone that would have not advised the man who bought a trailer there 6-months ago what a shaky investment that he was making.

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bloggyblog 6 years, 7 months ago

id, i agree with your cadillac analogy. that pretty much sums up prevailing sentiment amoung many new "locals". but, at the risk of sounding like a liberal, hippie, socialist, many of us didn't move or settle here for economic reasons. blog feels like giving up and packing up the wagon on an almost daily basis. but blog has so many fond memories and deep roots in steamboat, its not gonna be easy to just give up and leave. the big question in blogs mind is can steamboat find a sense of balance or are we destined to become 'playground for the rich and famous'. alphadog, sounds like you could use a heaping helping of humility and compassion. try volunteering in a homeless shelter sometime before you spew out heartless comments like "get a job or leave town". hopefully your never in a position where that kinda of comment comes back to haunt you!

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katrinkakelly 6 years, 7 months ago

Blood, sweat and tears here in Steamboat Springs for thirty years and not poor or on welfare. We are not rich either or a landmonger. Many locals were raising their children and did not invest in land like they should have. This sleepy little town has awakened and we can not stop it! Just sell the land to whoever can afford the payment and be done with it. New manufactured homes would be much better for that area.

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nancylou777 6 years, 7 months ago

What a sad thing it is when people forget the true locals. I grewup in Steamboat and lived in dream island when i was a little girl and again when i was an adult. I still have friends and family who live there. They might not have the money some of you have but they work hard and do their best to survive in a money hungry community. No one should be surprised that it's all about the money. That is what makes steamboat go round now, not the true locals who still love Steamboat enough to put up with people who love to judge those they think they below them. So sell dream island with it's old trailers, welfare moms and long time locals. Make that money. Thats what it's all about these days.

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steamboatyahoo 6 years, 7 months ago

I see another fenced off parking lot for Jim Cook's construction workers with a few dumpsters thrown in and stockpiles of building materials. Good use of our river frontage.

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stmbtgrl20 6 years, 7 months ago

Hey Alphadog.. why don't you chill out? Do you even know Moose? Do you even know her history? Don't judge someone without knowing them. People go through hard times in their life. Way to take a dump on someone when they are down. She has lived in this town well over 30+years and has done a lot for this community in the past. I am sure that you have never had a rough time in your life. Show some respect.

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sbsmon 6 years, 7 months ago

Taking numbers right now on the DI pool. Whoever guesses the closest sales price without going over gets their pick of the first new home Jim Cook puts on the land. Provided it's not a million dollar townhome. Time will tell on that one.

80 homes at an average of $530 a month that puts the lot rental income at 42K/month. 42K a month payment at 6% on a 30 year loan would warrant the seller asking around 6 million. That's 75K per lot.

It's just too bad the current residents who live there won't see a dime of that money.

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middleclass 6 years, 7 months ago

question: Who is going to establish the baseline for "affordable housing" at DI?

sbsmon has me thinking along the same lines. The income of this community of 80 homes should be averaged and used as THE baseline to determine what is "affordable". After-all for whom is this being made affordable to?

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ybul 6 years, 7 months ago

Maybe jim Cook is having selling the condos at the crazy prices he is asking. This is causing him to need to sell more of the units at a lower price, to compensate for the fact that he can not sell at the prices he had hoped to.

It seems to me that, the whole market is in a corrective stage, as has happened before. Those second home purchases, financed with home equity from a primary residence are luxuries which many are opting not to participate in.

Steamboat Springs' housing market will face a much swifter correction than other areas, as a result of many homes being the luxury of a second home, those retiree's whose stock portfolio has taken a beating and the cost of survival (food and energy) are increasing at about 13% per year.

The housing market will correct, and the affordability of this town will return.

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DHD 6 years, 7 months ago

AFFORDABLE HOUSING IN CARBONDALE, COLORADO (WHICH IS NOT STEAMBOAT) STARTS AT AROUND $500,000. WHAT DO YOU THINK IS AFFORDABLE IN SBS???

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Matthew Stoddard 6 years, 7 months ago

And here I thought Dream Island pretty much already was affordable housing for Steamboat. You know the saying:

"If it ain't broke- break it, fix it and charge more!"

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sbsmon 6 years, 7 months ago

Lets assume they are buying at my guestimated price of 6 Million. Just to make the payment on that debt or return on that investment whichever route green court chooses comes in at the current rent price of $530 a month just to cover the debt or investment. Its certainly not going to go down.

Now roll in the cost of taking out old homes that aren't fit to live in and have a manufactured home put in their place. That's 60-80 thousand minimum maybe more.

Not only are the owners making the lot rent payment of $530 to Green Court but they are making a payment on the loan for the new home as well. Now we are talking about $1000 a month and when they pay off the loan on the manufactured home they will continue to pay lot rent for eternity.

That is unless green court decides to sell them their particular lot which we've already estimated a base line price of 75K. They could have bought vacant lots in Silver Spur or Heritage Park 6 years ago for that price.

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mfishon1 6 years, 7 months ago

I'm obviously missing something here. DI is currently "affordable" as affordable can get in this town. Jim is going to take already affordable housing...put some lipstick on it....and whalla call it "affordable" and this is going to meet his requirements for his other projects. Huh...are we being hoodwinked here?

Now I'm not a big fan of this affordable housing ordinance we have. But if this is all it talkes to meet the requirement then I guess our developers have found a bonafide easy way to get around these requirements. That is some creative thinking on Jim's part. I was under the impression that he actually had to add affordable housing units to the community...not take some away and add slightly more cost to the already affordable housing at DI.

On the other hand, if the current owners were marketing the property then I guess it was just a matter of time before DI goes thru some type of transformation.

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Russell Orms 6 years, 7 months ago

I do not know Moose and the article did not give her full story. However my comment was not really about her as much as the entitlement issue of "living on welfare and food stamps" yet still feeling entitled to live on "prime real estate on the river" My comment still stands. Many of you said the same thing, only much more eloquently. If you can't afford a particular place maybe you should look for a better job or move to a more affordable location in the same city or move to a more affordable city. There are many all over the country where your money would go farther.

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thecondoguy1 6 years, 7 months ago

mfish, It's that whole thing of "affordable", the homes in Catamount are affordable, for sale, sold, it must have been affordable............... I don't get it........

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sbsmon 6 years, 7 months ago

Precisely my point mfishon. If this deal closes and upgrades are made those upgrades have to be paid for by someone. There's no way the renters at DI are going to continue to pay the same rent they do now for upgraded housing that Green Court provides.

Unless that's how Jim Cook is getting out of selling affordable units in his downtown properties. He subsidized the upgrades to relieve himself of the units he needs to provide and the current residents at DI pay the same rent.

I also agree that doesn't seem to me to fit the AH guidelines we have. Renters at DI would be getting nicer places to live but that wouldn't do anything to make more affordable housing available. We would still have the same number of people living in the same number of units. No net gain in my book.

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betamikeiski 6 years, 7 months ago

Jim Cook is single handedly changing the complexion of our town and is facing absolutely no reprecussions. Can anyone tell me why Triple Crown is perceived as our biggest villian??? Families, with their kids, playing sports while pumping millions into our local economy and we make them the focal point of our derision??? Seriously, this guy is making us all look like fools and is laughing all the way to the bank. (Hopefully his bank is Alpine).

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id04sp 6 years, 7 months ago

Uh, the comment somebody made about "get a job or leave town" is the way life is. All the rest of us have worked, made hard decisions, sacrificed along the way, and live within our means.

The people waiting around for their homes to be taken away from them before they worry about what to do next are just like the people in New Orleans who stayed and drowned when Katrina hit. Waiting for somebody else to come to your rescue is a very bad way to go. Moving on before you find yourself homeless is the reasonable thing to do.

I don't know about the current DI residents, but I used to know some who rode the bus, or a bike, because they'd lost their drivers license for drugs or alcohol. They held the low-end jobs (counter help; McDonalds, bus boy, etc.) because they had no other skills, and couldn't hold any other kind of job. They were sorta holding on, making enough to live in DI and buy cheap booze, and waiting to die. I don't know what you do for people like that, but expecting them to qualify for a loan to buy ANYTHING is a flight of fantasy.

People like this will always be among us. One of these guys came from a good family and had a small trust fund to live on, and his siblings had chipped in to buy him a pretty nice trailer in there. Wisely, they let him live in it, but he didn't own it. He got arrested for writing a bad check, and wanted me to bail him out. He didn't want me to contact his siblings (wonder why?), and had nothing to put up but his shaky word that he wouldn't skip town. I finally had to tell him, "If your family won't lend you $2,500 for bail, then why should I?"

We are all God's children, and I feel sorry for people like this, but do we owe them a place to live in addition to supporting and housing our own families?

Sorry, but being a "true local" is not like being an endangered species. Unless your birth certificate came with a deed attached, I don't see how you think you are entitled to something the rest of us have moved around, gone to school, worked and saved for, and probably taken some financial risks along the way to have.

If you expect to live in a trailer all your life on a low-wage job, then you probably need to be looking at some other town where they do things like process chickens, make beet sugar, make peanut butter, slaughter cattle, etc. Moving into a Jim Cooke condo on tips from the jar by the cash register is not a realistic goal.

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Jason Miller 6 years, 7 months ago

Kinda off subject i know.But i bet you will get a kick out of this one id04sp. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/24670991/

If kinda sounds like you are talking about Greely"process chickens, make beet sugar, make peanut butter, slaughter cattle, etc."

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bloggyblog 6 years, 7 months ago

so the gist of what some of you are saying is, if you don't make enough money, get out. blog thinks that kind of sentiment has probably always existed in steamboat just never to the degree it does now. i wish Hazie would come back and give you bozo's a sound drubbing! it sounds like you affordable housing opponents would like for everyone in steamboat to fit into a specific demographic. how sad! sad that your so narrow minded, and sad that your arrogant enough to think that your special because of economics.

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id04sp 6 years, 7 months ago

jester,

Greeley, many other towns in Colorado, many towns in Missouri, Kansas, Arkansas, Georgia, Tennessee, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Nebraska, etc. You can live better there than here if you are caught in a wage-earner job. It's just the truth.

I would never tell people who don't make enough money to get out of town. I'd tell them that if they expect to live here, they'd better be making enough money to support themselves and buy a home, because otherwise they are on the way out, like it or not. Move Craig, or Walden, or Rifle. Come back and visit. Your life will be better. Really, how many people living in Dream Island have season ski passes anyway? Name any other reason to be here.

When I was a kid in the 50s and 60s, our fathers were survivors of World War II. Almost every one of them served, and most of them served in combat. They taght us the meaning of being responsible and self-sufficient. Then, in the late 60s and 70s, our society changed and people grew up with more affluence and comfort, and no requirement to serve anyone else. These are the folks who want the free ride now. Shame on your parents for not teaching you better, and shame on you for not figuring it out for yourself.

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steamboatyahoo 6 years, 7 months ago

Hey Condoguy when Catamount is seen as affordable housing who is going to carry your golf clubs from your locker to the golf cart and then wash them when you get back from your 18 holes? Who is going to serve you your cocktails in the club house? Who is going to pick up your car from the valet parking? Who is going to cut the grass, rake the bunkers, wash your clubs before putting them away? Who is going to cut your wife's hair? You probably won't have kids since most Catamount homeowners are beyond that stage of life, but when your grandchildren visit, who is going to watch them at night when you and their parents are out for dinner at the 2 restaurants that remain in town?

Who is going to clean your windows, cut your lawn, roof your guest house, install your irrigation system, change the oil in your Hummer and on and on.

Where are all these people going to live?

Beaver Creek Village is a very nice place, with nice houses and a great ski area. Not one family living in that gated resort sends children to the local elementary schools. There are no families living there.

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ColoradoNative 6 years, 7 months ago

"Owning" a trailer on someone else's land is a bad idea in any town USA.

I sympathize with the families that will be displaced but did they really think they were going to retire at Dream Island?

May I make a suggestion? Allow some truly affordable units on the property. They are called APARTMENTS!

Apartments are those 1 or 2 bedroom units stacked on one another that people lease from the owner.

The people of Dream Island were not owners to begin with. They were renters no matter how you slice it. There is a better chance of those residents staying on that property if an 80 unit apartment building was allowed.

Furthermore Jim could probably offset his costs if some commercial development was allowed. Maybe it's time to put in a small grocery store on the west side of town to ease the congestion. Maybe a small strip mall there that could provide jobs to the tenants of the property?

I'm just brainstorming here but there is certainly a higher and better use for the property then decaying trailers. Yes I understand they are people's "castles" but the reality is they very well could be in trouble with the runoff as it is.

Density of zoning is the key. Simply stacking 80 "affordable" units on the property is not going to help the people of Dream Island. The government doesn't need to be involved and subsidize this.

Can someone please tell me why City Council insists that everyone in Steamboat wants to own property here?

There are tens of thousands of eager young men and women who want to live the dream of living in a ski town.

Pack the property with apartments. This may be the solution to the housing shortage we've been looking for.

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jeannie berger 6 years, 7 months ago

I have been here for 30 years, raised 4 kids, all of them either college grads on well on their way to being one. I have a full time job, contribute to the local economy by spending most of my paycheck here. (No warrants out for my arrest, American citizen, pay my taxes, don't have any debt, pick up after my dog, etc.) But, because I live in Dream Island, you think I should move. Who died and left you folks in charge of who can or cannot live in Steamboat Springs? Do any of you naysayers know people that live in Dream Island personally? This negative blather that some of you are writing is amazing to me. First of all I am not asking for a hand out or a freebie from any of you (ID04sp you seem to never have a nice thing to say about those who you feel are less fortunate than yourself. Didn't your parents teach you any compassion or empathy?) so why is it I should move? Yes I could have applied and probably gotten in on some of the affordable housing available in the area. Yes, I did know when I bought my mobile home that there was a likely chance I would someday be displaced and lose what, if any, equity I might have gained. So what is every ones beef about making the park nicer? Better homes for those of us that are owners, a 99 year lease on the property that our homes sit on that can be sold along with the homes (this is one of the proposals from J. C. hmmm, those initials seem vaguely familiar) How about we work together and make this a reality. The neighbors I have here in the park are the same as your neighbors, there is no blanket phrase that would cover the residents here. We are your neighbors as well. Isn't this community ( S.S.) well known for its ability to come together and help one another? Where is that helpfulness in this regard. None of the folks that live here are asking for a handout. This may be prime real estate on the river but it is apparently zoned mobile home park. They always seemed to put the mobile home parks on the river and next to the tracks because no one else wanted to live there. Now that the rest of you have discovered the benefits of living on or near the river it is seen as prime real estate and those of us living here should move to Kansas or Missouri or just anywhere far, far away. I will reiterate, we are not asking for a handout. We live here and if that offends you then close your eyes when you drive by and deal with your own baggage. We will deal with ours

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ColoradoNative 6 years, 7 months ago

Dreamweaver said "Yes, I did know when I bought my mobile home that there was a likely chance I would someday be displaced and lose what, if any, equity I might have gained."

Here is what I don't understand. Was there any provision in your lot leases that said you had X amount of years to live on the property? Were they month to month agreements? Yearly?

Any "equity" you claim to have is certainly not in the land your unit was on. Old trailers do not appreciate. They depreciate.

What did that lot rent of $530 include? Any utilities?

I do hope there is a solution with the residents of DI. I stated my opinion above. I just don't see how a family going from $530 month will be able to afford the payments of a deed restricted unit anyway.

If there is equity in your mobile home wouldn't it be nice to be able to sell that and apply it to several years of prepaid rent in a nice new apartment on the river?

Furthermore I just don't understand the entitlement people have that insist they should be able to afford to live on the ski mountain or on a river. People want ski in ski out deed restricted units for crying our loud.

If that is the case I'm in the market for deed restricted unit on a nice sandy beach in San Diego. Can anyone hook me up with that contact information? If I'm going to move to San Diego it has to be on the beach. I'm not willing to drive to it.

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80488mom 6 years, 7 months ago

I think it's sad people are judged by the amount of money in their bank accounts instead of their deeds, service to others and character. There are plenty of poor people I'd rather rub elbows with than someone who appears to have everything but essentially nothing when it comes to character and integrity.

Moose is one of those good people worth knowing. She owned a pet store on the corner of 3rd and Oak for years. She's worked hard her entire life and contributed to this community in so many ways. She's now elderly and in poor health. It would not be her choice to live on government assistance.

I only feel pity for those of you who are superficial and judgemental. You are the ones who are poor.

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Russell Orms 6 years, 7 months ago

Shame on the Steamboat Pilot for deleting my original comment. While the pen is mighter than the sword, in your case Mr. Editor, the eraser is mighter than the keyboard. My comment was neither profane or outrageous. If you only allow comments that coincide with your own, then shame on you. So let's keep the comments in the context that the first article was written. It said she lived on welfare and food stamps. If the article was incomplete or inaccurate then don't hold those of us that commented on it for its accuracy. I see nothing wrong with suggesting that someone who is on welfare (should it have said Social Security? which is not welfare) look for work. If they can't afford the town they are in then they maybe they should chose to look to another town. That's the way it is. People are responsible for their own choices and are not entitled. Some people like red, some blue. We are ok with that. That's just the way it is. Some people live in "the bridge house" others in 1mm homes, some in apts, trailers etc. We are all ok with that. That's the way it is. Some drive Mercedes, some Buicks, some take the bus. We are ok with that. That's the way it is. I am not suggesting anyone should be required to move, only that one option of personal responsibility is to chose to move to make what money they have go farther. If someone doesn't have enough money they can chose to look for a better job. If they can't afford the home/apt they are in, then they can look for another place. Anyone living in a rental unit is always at risk of their lease not renewing. How is this any different? A person's good works and kind heart do not translate into entitelement either. That's just the way it is. And to the person who suggested treating "true locals" differently. I would ask them to define. Is it only someone who was born here? Is it only based on how long they have lived here? Is the person who has lived and worked and paid taxes here to 30 years less a local then the 28 yr. old who was born here? Or is it just you because you got here before your neighbor?

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80488mom 6 years, 7 months ago

Time to wipe your snotty nose Steamboat because soon you may be waiting in line to buy those kleenex longer than you'd like. There won't be anyone to fill entry level positions. I know of three people recently who lived in Craig but worked in Steamboat and now work in Craig. More people living in Craig means growth for their city. Growth equals new jobs....Super Walmart....Walgreens.....Sonic....and the list is growing as fast as the city. You'd have to be crazy to stay in an entry level position in Steamboat and live in Craig when you could work close to home.

Why is city government so concerned about affordable housing? Because they need to keep the work force close to home.

You will also have a hard time attracting policemen, firemen, teachers, nurses, etc., etc. if they can't afford to live here. With gas at record highs people aren't as eager to commute.

It's not about entitlement. It's about keeping the city functioning and providing basic needs and services. Who is going to protect your fair city? Who is going to teach your children? Who is going to care for you when you are hospitalized? Who is going to put out the fire when your $5M home is burning?

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spukomy 6 years, 7 months ago

snowysteamboat,

"Mr. Cook has obligations for HA that are being maintained."

He had previous obligations to provide 1.5 units of parking for every 1.0 condo he put downtown. When he realized it would cost him less to pay CC, in lieu, he took that route.

Jim Cook is not doing this for any other reason than $.

As far as displacment of homes goes, there will be lots. The entire B-Side, the east end, will be replaced by some fine looking structures. Lots 1-12ish are in a "flood way". Federal Law prohibits re-platting when existing structures are in a flood-way, so these homes must go. When this happens, 20 of the 85ish homes are gone.

Then there are minimum area requirements that need to be satsfied in order to build a new home. How many will be left then? Zero. That's because Jim Cook wants all homes to be a 2000 or newer models. And he wants to sell them to you.

Jim Cook, making affordable housing affordable.

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dave reynolds 6 years, 7 months ago

i agree mom..someone posted a while back years from now people are going to wonder what happened to the heart and soul of steamboat well heres your answer jim cook is single handedly elimanating the working class from steamboat first westland trailor park now dream island whats next jim...whne you make your sales pitch be sure to tell your investors by the way there wont be many people left to do the enrty level jobs..lol..i'll bet that will be a great selling point..why do people think that 200,000 dollar homes are affordable for folks who make anywhere between 12 to 25 dollars an hour..?

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OnTheBusGus 6 years, 7 months ago

Where is the $200K home? Paddlefisher, that should be doubled. You are right though, how does one afford a home on the wages paid here? I still think we need affordable RENTALS for those who can't invest in property or do not want to or just want to spend a season or two here. Not every one wants to or needs to own property. If someone bought property a loooong time ago when it was reasonable, then good on them but that doesn't mean that the newcomers and younger folk aren't working hard enough to buy property. I know plenty of couples sacrificing & saving but the prices are just really high. That's the bottom line.

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weststmbtres 6 years, 7 months ago

spukomy,

You seem to have some insider knowledge that the rest of us aren't privy to. May I ask where the rest of us can get a look at what you are referencing. Sounds like you've already got your hands on the preliminay plans for the new development or you've been involved in the process of this transaction somewhere along the way.

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id04sp 6 years, 7 months ago

Yahoo,

When my wife and I visit our second home, we don't want the kids around. We go there to get away from the kids. Same for all the other things that we deal with daily; the second home is a REFUGE. There's no reason why anybody in a gated second-home community would even want to put kids in school.

Dreamriver,

You really want to know what my parents taught me about less fortunate people? Well, here it is.

My grandfather was a sharecropper who had to take a job working as a fireman on the railroad, during the depression, to have enough money to keep clothes on his wife and kids. He shoveled coal into steam engines. My father and his little brother (they were 12 and 10) had to "make the crop" that year without a grown man around to help. They ate well because they raised most of their food.

My other grandfather was a shop owner who scraped by with an 8th grade education until WW-II, and then became a transit operator around age 33 and did that job for the rest of his working life. He never made more than $5 per hour in his entire life. In 1963, he paid cash for a new Chevy Impala, but without A/C or a radio, because he couldn't afford the cost and couldn't afford to pay interest on a loan. His mortgage was bad enough.

In both cases, my parents learned that you have to work, save, be responsible, careful, and frugal because life will come along some day and yank the rug out from under you. You'd better be ready when that happens. What did you think was going to happen when land values got high enough for your landlords to sell the land under your feet and retire?

When I was a kid, we moved a total of four times, to different cities in different states, so my Dad could get better jobs. He moved four more times before age 60, and ended up retired from a job high-up in his company, to a nice house, in a nice neighborhood, not having to worry about money, and has played golf at least once a week for the past 22 years.

So, a twelve year-old kid who had to raise a cotton crop with only the help of his little brother taught me that the only thing holding most people back is a lack of ambition. There are plenty of ways to succeed and get ahead and never have to face your situation (losing your home in a trailer court at age 50 or more).

You, Sir, need to find yourself a place in Nevada or Utah where you can live well on what you have. There are plenty of those places around if you give up a set of unrealistic expectations tied to living in a rented mobile home on somebody else's land in a resort town. You should have seen this coming ten years ago and taken action. It's way too late now to do anything but move away.

(continued)

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id04sp 6 years, 7 months ago

(continued)

The awful truth is that Dream Island is considered to be an eyesore by most visitors who see it. In their towns, trailers mean trash. I know that's not true around here, but it is true where a lot of our visitors come from.

The reason that you don't have control over what's going to happen next is that you have depended on other people to not screw you over, or you just didn't think about it until now.

I don't support rich developers and real estate agents coming in and running you off your land, but I certainly do understand that they have the power to do so. I got run out of business when my landlord sold land for a direct competitor to put up a business that my customers had to drive by to get to mine. When my business moved out, another kind of business moved into the same space, and now the landlord has more money than before even though I lost $100k in the process.

I think the high-density development sucks. I hate the town. I'm glad I live well outside the city limits, and go there as seldom as possible. All that said . . .

You need to move out and move on. It's going to happen one day even if it doesn't happen now. Nobody is going to lease you a trailer lot for 99 years. That would be the worst possible business decision anyone could make, and the ONLY WAY to stop what's happening would be for the City to condemn the property and put it to a bona fide public use, not as a place for working class families to live inside the city limits of a major resort town.

There's a hard test that goes with situations like this. Would you move out of your home and hand the keys over to someone else who has less than you do? If not, why should anyone else do the same for you?

My honest suggestion is that you get yourself enrolled in a heavy-equipment operator school somewhere, get certified for EPA toxic waste site remediation (like garages that have spilled oil and transmission fluid on the ground for the past 50 years), and go where the work is. Buy a 5th wheel trailer, live in campgrounds, and follow the work. I know people who do just this very thing, and there's a big demand for it, and they make a bundle of money. 50 or 55 is not too old. I'm even considering doing it myself, and working 3 months or 6 months a year until I retire "for good" in about 10 years.

Talking about the demise of Dream Island won't do any good for anyone. Come up with another plan, and do it. The sooner you get started, the sooner you'll find yourself in a better situation.

And FYI, I had to move away for seven years and work somewhere else, living in a rented house, to avoid losing everything I own here in Routt County. It sucked on day one, but now it's just a memory. Make a plan for where you can be in six months, and go for it. That way, six months from now you'll be set up and living decently instead of waiting for the bulldozers to move your trailer out to the landfill.

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ybul 6 years, 7 months ago

It seems to me that times are a little different from the depression, when people could live in tents down by the river and could obtain a job. My father would sweep up grain at the depot and take it to the local store, sell it and buy food, so that his parents had enough to eat.

The world was much more local, people seemed to care about their fellow citizens. Times have changed from when your dad grew up. The federal reserve, a private corporation with no oversight and more power than the federal government in reality as they hold the purse strings, has created an environment which makes it difficult to exist in the same fashion as our fore fathers.

My father would be arrested for stealing today for theft of grain for doing what he did as a child, in an effort to survive.

The disparity in wealth in the valley, will destroy the community if it has not already. When your grandfather was growing up, you did not have 10's of millions of people investing their retirement savings in stocks at the time as people were so burned in the 20s, there were no pension funds that were buying paper investment vehicles that pay no dividends for the most part today, and their only value exists by the hopes that a greater fool will come along and buy that "asset".

Much like the dollar, which has no difference in its cost of production wether it is a 1 or a 100. Whereas money in your pappys day, had a hard value and could be exchanged for real wealth (silver or gold). Today, it is simply a medium of exchange, printed by the banking Monoploy, with no oversight from elected officials, and is the root cause of inflation (the increase in price based upon an increase in monetary or credit supplies).

Peace, and try to be kind and think about why times are different today versus the 30s as there are stark differences, which make it difficult for an individual to do what your grandpa or my father did.

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jeannie berger 6 years, 7 months ago

"It's way to late now to do anything but move away." That is your opinion and you are welcome to it. My parents also grew up during the depression. Big Whoop! I am not impressed by your sermonizing and what the heck, while I am at it I am not a sir, but of the female species. I have owned and run a couple of businesses in town, and owned 3 houses. A bad partnership and subsequent lawsuit that went the other way(the judge being the one with the girlfriend that was arrested) led me to buy a place in DI so that my kids could finish school here, where they were born. My pay is on the higher side of 25 per hour and I work full time. You seem to think I am complaining about my situation, I am not. There are more important things in life to care about than the investments you make in material things. The last time I looked you can't take it with you. So glad you have a second house to go to. Get away from the kids, wow, glad I am not your kid. I like having mine around me, and the grand child as well.
Face it ID, your reality is not my reality. For that I am thankful!!

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steamboatyahoo 6 years, 7 months ago

ID

My point exactly, Beaver Creek is a REFUGE for the wealthy to escape into. Steamboat is a community, or used to be when I went to school here. A community that included and still includes people that live in trailer parks and as well as wealthy children of local business people, etc. Still holding out hope that the experience of growing up here would be similar for my children 25+ years after I left for college. That's why I moved back. And since I tele-commute, we could live anywhere- even Beaver Creek.

Second home owners are not part of a community. They don't coach the youth sports teams, etc., they want refuge, not participation.

When Steamboat becomes a gated community, which you seem to think would be ideal, we'll know we've lost the battle and it is time to suck it up and move on.

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80488mom 6 years, 7 months ago

Dream River - good luck and God Bless you and the kids.

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Jason Miller 6 years, 7 months ago

Back in my day i walked 10 miles in in the snow with holes in my shoes to the little school house on the hill.

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Jason Miller 6 years, 7 months ago

This is me playing the world smallest violin for you.

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id04sp 6 years, 7 months ago

Look back at your Greek mythology and read about Cassandra. She was given the gift of prophecy, but was cursed so that nobody would believe her.

Dreamy, if the fella I'm thinking about was the one who "steered" you to DI, then you should know that he was in the business of selling mobile homes after the other gig fell through. Now look where you are; in a home you own, from which the seller made money, and you're going to lose it. Where was the "favor" in that deal?

No, dearie, you cannot take it with you. You're probably going to have to leave it right where it sits, and think of something else. That's not my fault, and if dealing with reality is not something fun to contemplate, you're really not going to enjoy it when it rolls over you for real.

Our little "community" is made up of people willing to screw each other over for a profit. You seem to know that from personal experience, and yet you don't understand what's going on?

I wish you good luck. Don't wait for it to happen to you. Do something for yourself on YOUR schedule, and rent your place out for as long as you can. That's about the only choice you have left.

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another_local 6 years, 7 months ago

I continue to be amazed that so many people think Jim Cook is the one doing these things. He is just the broker and he is good at his job.

It is not his money and he does not make the decisions. When someone lists the house next door and a new neighbor moves in and does something you don't like do you blame the realtor that listed the home? The people on both sides of the deal decide where the thing ends up, not the broker in the middle. He is just a salesman.

Jim is an effective lightning rod for the owners but don't be confused, he is not calling the shots.

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sbsmon 6 years, 7 months ago

Another local, Think about it for a second.

Jim personally signs the documents for each acquisition. Look up the Statement of Authority for River Walk or Third and Lincoln at clerks office at the courthouse. Green Court sets up an different acquisition LLC for each purchase and they put Jim 100% in charge. He is the only person listed on the Statement of Authority. When you check the same company names on the assessors/treasurers records you'll see all the mailing addresses are the same as the mailing address for Green Court in Illinois.

If Jim is just acting as their real estate agent and collecting commissions on these purchases then he wouldn't be signing documents on behalf of the LLC that is purchasing all of these properties.

Jim has as much say in what goes on as any of the other people involved in Green Court.

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sbsmon 6 years, 7 months ago

If Jim was not in charge why would they allow him to personally sign the documents on behalf of the company without any other signatures required.

Your quote is "He is just the broker"

DORA would have something to say if Jim was acting only as agent and collecting commissions and was also the only person signing documents and binding the company in these transactions.

If I were buying or selling a piece of my own real estate, I could not give my realtor power of attorney to sign for me because they stand to gain financially if the deal closes. They could not be expected to act impartial way or in my best interest. I don't see how Jim can sign docs, bind the ecompany and still act as their real estate agent colleting commissions on the sale.

If you can explain how your scenario works with the typical realtor/client releationship I'd love to hear it.

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sbsmon 6 years, 7 months ago

another local, Just call up any of the local title companies and ask them;

"Will you accept a POA signed by a buyer or seller giving their realtor (the one who is collecting a commission on the very same deal) power of attorney to sign documents to complete the transaction?"

You are telling me that Jim is doing exactly this when you say he is acting as only their agent but signing the purchase documents on behalf of the buyer.

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jeannie berger 6 years, 7 months ago

I was in a meeting with him re: DI and he called Green Courte his partners. He is not just the broker. You should ask him about the vision he has for Steamboat Springs. His statement to the group, meeting with him on Thursday eve, was something along the line of, I have a vision for Steamboat Springs, it may not be everyone's vision but it is mine. I might not have the words exact but it is the gist of it.

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another_local 6 years, 7 months ago

The authority to sign is not the same as being the decision maker. It also does not require financial participation. You are correct, I used the wrong term when I said "just the broker". What I meant to say was that he was not the one making decisions or putting up the money. i.e. He is a front man.

Jim is very good at talking about "vision" and he is a hell of a salesman. I don't doubt that many ideas of his are part of the plan. The Chaiman of Greencourte (Randall Rowe) has a home on Cty 14 out past Haymaker. If you think Jim Cook is in charge, have a closer look.

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jeannie berger 6 years, 7 months ago

jeep, thank for the link, and it doesn't show J.C. as a partner. Maybe he spoke of being a Prtner in the broadest sense of the term. Just being affiliated with them, makes him a partner?

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another_local 6 years, 7 months ago

"it doesn't show J.C. as a partner" Exactly. And the list goes all the way to receptionist.

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sbsmon 6 years, 7 months ago

I've already seen their web site. I checked it out last year when the bought the gas station across from the PO. jeep I never said Jim was a partner in Green Courte. I said:

"Green Court sets up an different acquisition LLC for each purchase and they put Jim 100% in charge. He is the only person listed on the Statement of Authority."

Green Courte owns the acquisition LLC hence the treasurer and Assessors showing thier Illinois address for tax billing. Jim is named on the SOA as the person who has full authority to bind the company they set up for the acquisition.

Here's a prediction for the DI purchase. Green Courte Partners will not be the ultimate buyer. They will create a new LLC just for this aquisition and Jim will be named as the person empowered to sign on the Statement of Authority. Historically that is exactly what has happened with every purchase they have made.

Just because Randall owns a vacation home here (and don't forgget his garage at the airport) doesn't put him in charge of the local real estate development. A lot of wealthy people from Chicago own property here. I'm sure he and Jim discuss every project they do in great detail and he has a lot to say about what happens but Jim is the person making it happen.

Believe what you want. I'm done arguing about it. If you think the residents of Steamboat are naive enough to beleive Jim is just a marionette on a string being played by Randall Rowe and the folks at Green Courte then you may be a little naive yourself.

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mtroach 6 years, 7 months ago

Where were all you nay sayers when the Health and Rec bulldozed the mobile homes for their tennis courts? That's a member run recreational "non- profit" that took away people's homes for tennis courts that are only used when the snow is gone. If any of you posters are members of Health and Rec, look in the mirror, every comment made about him can be directed to your directors that made that decision. Let's not forget that Mr. Cook isn't the only person redeveloping steamboat.

Either you own your own future here in steamboat, or you are at the whim of the rich landowners that do.

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Hadleyburg_Press 6 years, 7 months ago

Capitalism, of which I am a strong proponent, has many vulgar expressions. Unfortunately, this is the price we pay to have an incentive driven economy. It is this incentive that motivates our people to strive for innovations that we all benefit from. Without reward, their would be no risk takers. Without risk takers we would stagnate and become dependent on those societies that would push the envelope. Government interference in this procees, for the most part, does nothing but demotivate. When this occurs, society as a collective suffers the tangible effects of economic impediments. So, the loss of Dream Island does hurt, but if we were to disengage the capitalist process everytime it hurt locally, the negative latent effect would be greater both locally and for society as a whole.

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rsssco 6 years, 7 months ago

If Jim Cook is "just the broker" as another local says, I guess Cook and Green Courte are lying when they write about Alpenglow: "This real estate development offers prime downtown Steamboat real estate, developed by Jim Cook. Jim is bringing over 25 years of experience in urban real estate development and downtown revitalization to the Alpenglow project." http://www.alpenglowsteamboat.com/home.php

Further, I guess James A. Cook (who gives himself the exalted title "Visionary") is lying about himself, his extensive career as an urban developer and his development plans for Riverwalk on his Riverwalk developer's vision page located at: http://www.riverwalksteamboat.com/text/dev_vision.pdf

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katrinkakelly 6 years, 7 months ago

What about the Ute Indians buried on the land in Dream Island? Should they dig them up too! Ah, but they are not sure where exactly the graves are there..........................!

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proud2serve 6 years, 7 months ago

I grew up in Steamboat, and as a child I played in both Westland and Dream Island. My grandparents had been residents in Westland for well over 30 years with no problems of keeping their residence, that was until Jim Cook came along. I watched, helplessly, as Mr. Cook ripped out all that my grandparents had worked so hard over the years for. When all was said and done, Mr. Cook left them with barely enough money to survive on for one month. Mind you, my grandparents were both retired and living off of what retirement benefits that they had. They were offered very unrealistic compensation for being uprooted. I am very concerned now with the news that Mr. Cook is going to take charge of the place i used to call home. Dream Island was a wonderful place that many people call home. I lived there for ten years or so. Learned how to ride a bike, camp outs in the back yard, just the fun kid stuff in life, all of which i learned in Dream island. I am not sure that my family would have ever been able to find a more stable place to live that we could have afforded. Dream Island, along with many other residences in the steamboat area, provide lower income families with the ability to have a actual house with a yard, all with the agreement to pay a reasonable monthly rent. Steamboat needs to realize that if there is new buildings put in, they will not be as affordable. What are the people that are displaced going to do? I am curious if Jim Cook has ever wondered if he was going to be able to afford dinner for his family or have the money to keep the heat on in the middle of winter? Probably not. But that is a concern of most people in the lower class.

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ybul 6 years, 7 months ago

Contrary to the thought that we are a capitalistic society, we could more properly be described as a corporatist society. One that is driven by cheap money, lent out by the Money Changers with the walls of the Federal Reserve (A private corporation with no oversight).

Without some local oversight, those who saw a relative value to other ski towns, will turn this one upside down. Potentially leaving it a train wreck as the debt markets are currently unwinding, and those who buy second homes, with incomes under 500K, are finding it difficult to make ends meet.

It is quite possible that Jim Cook and Co will lose their shorts, as lending standards are being tightened, money is not as readily available (home equity is disappearing in primary residences).

It is quite possible that in the not to distant future, Steamboat Springs will once again be the affordable community it was.

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Hadleyburg_Press 6 years, 7 months ago

p2s, Are you entitled to determine what constitutes a "reasonable monthly rent" or does the renter? Would you use the the power of the state to enforce your concept of it? Would you also use the power of the state to force citizens to be charitable and to a degree you find acceptable?

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jeannie berger 6 years, 7 months ago

Proud2serve, I agree with every thing you say except your last two words. Hopefully you meant lower income and not lower class.

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Hadleyburg_Press 6 years, 7 months ago

ybul, So then what you are saying is that the market will potentially adjust and correct itself? Sounds like free market capitalism to me...

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steamboatyahoo 6 years, 7 months ago

affordable community with lots of cheap/vacant retail space on Lincoln avenue and no place to live.

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ybul 6 years, 7 months ago

Distorted capitalism, distorted by a banking system, which conjures money out of thin air.

Inflation adjusted interest rates currently are running negative and a "free market" would not allow real interest rates to be negative. By todays government statistics real interest rates are about -1.5%. If you use the measuring stick used prior to 1983 real interest rates are about -8%.

The Federal Reserve Managing interest rates and fixing them, is not capitalism, it is centralized governmental planning. However, the Federal Reserve is a private corporation, so I can not say what that is.

The government giving a tax break to have a loan on ones house, filling the bubble, while at the same time giving a tax break to invest in the stock market, filling that bubble. Are both prime examples of government distorting the markets. These distortions were designed, partially by special interests, to serve their interests, with a guise of doing it for the greater good. Home ownership for everyone.

The economy is managed capitalism, not capitalism. As you said the government will screw it up. They screwed up the national housing market via the near free money available for speculation.

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thecondoguy1 6 years, 7 months ago

jester, very cool video, about 1995? thanks for that...........

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id04sp 6 years, 7 months ago

Proud2,

The story you tell is tragic. Nobody should be put in that position.

Here's the thing; renters don't own the land. Would owning a mobile home lot in Milner have been so bad? Was Westland always the only alternative available?

Nobody is going to earn any stars in their crown for displacing an elderly couple from their home.

The only thing I can tell you is that I'm glad I'm not in either situation (evictor or evictee). My grandmother lived with my parents for 32 years after my grandfather died, and while that was not always rosy, it was the right thing for them to do.

My wife and I are making plans to do the same for our parents, all of whom are still living and pushing or past 80. I guess the lesson is that families have to step in when people are in need. We don't know what the arrangements will be in the long run (assisted living nearby, a separate residence on our subdividable acreage, a suite attached to the main house, etc.), but we're not going to put them out on the ice . . .

There's no good solution to any of this except for the renters to buy the land at fair market value.

I saw the same sort of thing happen to a family in Virginia Beach, Virginia a few years ago. The mobile home owner was a retired Petty Officer who lived on his retired pay with his wife and son. The retired Petty Officer was 37 years old. He figured 20 years in the Navy was long enough to work, and that was that. I guess I'll just leave it with the fact that sometimes people have no choice, and sometimes they just don't have a clue.

We put latches on cabinets so that toddlers can't get under the sink and poison themselves. Maybe we should do the same with mobile home parks; you can't live there if you're over 30 unless you own the land under the trailer.

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elk2 6 years, 7 months ago

I find it hard to imagine how Jim Cook and Co. can sleep at night. I always wonder where their conscience is. I don't think when you go to the Pearly Gates that the man upstairs is going to be more interested in how much money you made instead of how you treated your fellow man.

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dave reynolds 6 years, 7 months ago

Amen..elk..said it once wil say it again..no work force no way to fill your sales pitch sure jim is sittin good to hell with the rest of us..jim ok i hope you have night mares.but if you can look youself in the mirror and truely feel you did the right thing then you are a money hungry land shark that has no respect for the working class as long as you make your buck..shame on you..but when you met Saint Peter..be sure to explain thats its all about the all mighty dollar..im sure he will understand..a.....e

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bikegirl 6 years, 7 months ago

Apparently,Jim Cook's "vision"is shared by city council. No conscience,just greed.

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JustAsking 6 years, 7 months ago

...and what has been done with the city owned trailer park?

The same city council that insists that "everyone should be an owner" seems to be dragging their feet as usual when the city is supposed to play by the same rules that they force on others.

Is the city owned trailer park the best location for a very limited number of "affordable " structures or should it be sold for a premium and the money used to encourage private higher density housing on more affordable land?

Why would any responsible city council insist on keeping a low density trailer park on prime real estate when it would be possible to accomidate a much larger population on another site at lower cost? What are they thinking?

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Russell Orms 6 years, 7 months ago

All this discussion is unbelievable. The way it is states-these are rentals-period. What if it was apartment rentals and the manager raised the rent. Would we subsidize all the tenants? This is crazy.

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spukomy 6 years, 7 months ago

weststmbtres, I lived there when I first came to town and still have some good friends in DI. I heard about the plan a week or so before the news broke. I'm not involved in the planning in any way. Sorry, I can't give you any references to confirm what has been said.

I can tell you that when Fish Creek Trailer Park was considering doing the redevelopement thing, they ran into a lot of roadblocks. In order to satisfy the minimum lot requirements, under current code, all 68 homes would have to be removed. Infastructure, including more fire hydrants, widening roads, would be addressed. Then, only 32 of the 68 homes could be put back. And none of the 7 sitting in the flood way could return. These would have to be removed before a replatting could occur. It's also illegal to alter a flood way. This idea was shot down because it would displace people. Jim Cook is now up against the same circumstances.

Just Asking, this might interest you. The city doesn't own Fish Creek TP, the Housing Authority does. The city put up $984k, interest free for 5 years, to help secure the property. Along with the $, the city added some provisions. And the Enevers had some of their own as well. FCTP is not to be sold for more than it was purchased for. All new residents must work here in town, live here year-round, own no other real residential property, and may not rent out their homes. All new tenants must pass financial and criminal background checks, and any roommates are also checked out.

The HA is working toward securing a coop style ownership for the residents. Even if you can't afford to buy 1/68 of the Park, you will not be kicked out for that. Hopefully, in time, the City will get it's $ back, the HA also gets it's $ back, and all 68 home sites in FCTP are owned by the residents.

This is a far cry from what will happen to DI. Their residents may be able to lock up a 99 year lease, but Cook calls the shots on their lot rent. The folks who had paid off their homes will get back into a payment. Jim Cook will sell you the home and attach the typical 3% deed restiction, a losing proposition if you are paying more than 3% on a loan. With less residents and the cost of upgrades the lot rent will climb. The ones who have the $ to stay will definately have a much prettier place to live. But at what cost. They have my sympathy.

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ColoradoNative 6 years, 7 months ago

Spukomy "FCTP is not to be sold for more than it was purchased for. All new residents must work here in town, live here year-round, own no other real residential property, and may not rent out their homes. All new tenants must pass financial and criminal background checks, and any roommates are also checked out."

Sounds communist if you ask me. For crying out loud when will we move away from this socialistic style of government and build some apartment buildings in this town?

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rhys jones 6 years, 7 months ago

Can't we all just... get along?

I am amazed how we all use this as an excuse to beat our various drums, while the obvious solution is right before our eyes.

Were I a creative sort who resided at Dream Island, I would consider retaining a local shyster -- and I'm sure several might jump at the opportunity, if for the publicity alone -- and slap an injunction on ol' Jim, momentarily halting the sale of the property, and giving the current occupants the right to match the offer. Surely they are grandfathered in, have the rights of first refusal, squatter's rights, as it were. Some of those folks have been there for decades. Aren't there applicable adverse-possession laws in effect by now? I'll leave the laws to the lawyers and accounting to the accountants, but going with the figures generally cited above, each lot is worth $75K -- so that's what each site owner must come up with. I think that would be affordable. If they can't afford THAT, they can sell their rights and move somewhere they CAN afford with the proceeds, and get out of MY place, cuz I might buy in!!

The new landowners should be free to improve their property as they see fit, including replacing present mobile with more permanent structures, and some variances from city code may be also required, frontages and such, again, lawyer stuff.

It would be its own subdivision, management company for trash and plowing etc, minor fees, owners are partners.

Fish Creek did it, they own now. Dream Island residents should be legally afforded the same opportunity at ownership. Somebody see to it, okay?

BTW -- I appreciate this issue as my first opportunity to contribute to this forum. Hi folks, might have more to come!!

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id04sp 6 years, 7 months ago

highway,

I think you would quickly find that ol' Jim has better lawyers who would quickly drive any such effort into a project far more expensive than the residents could afford.

Also, an injunction requires a legal basis. For people who have no lawful right to occupy the land, they don't have a leg to stand on. Anybody who filed a suit against this deal would probably have it dismissed on the grounds that it was frivolous and groundless, and end up paying Jim's court costs to boot.

Aside from any of that, you will find that the local judges either have close ties to real estate attorneys, or actually practiced real estate law themselves (Judge Hill, for sure, for Klauzer and Tremaine), and would not be inclined to grant injunctive relief against a legal land sale anyway, much less anything that was not directlly supported by standing law and precedent.

There's a reason why people are not busting their humps to open mobile home parks. It's expensive to provide roads, water, sewer, power and all that, and then, what have you got? You might as well develop the land for single family homes because that's where the money is.

I think the worst case in all of this is the poor guy that bought his home six months ago, and now has to move it. I hope he didn't pay cash . . .

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rhys jones 6 years, 7 months ago

id --

Thank you for the shot of reality I obviously needed; the powers that be obviously reach far beyond my idealistic dreams, and "affordable housing" is merely a matter of lip service to them and theirs.

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rhys jones 6 years, 7 months ago

BTW -- I have friends in that exact situation, having bought there, only for this to happen. My friends are the responsible, working type, and look forward to this as an opportunity to get in on the ground floor, so to speak and no pun intended, of a better development. The main concern I've heard voiced is where to relocate for the months the facelift is underway.

I've lived in DI myself before, many fond memories. And I've eyed it hungrily myself; 200 truckloads of dirt turns flood plain into prime real estate -- $6 Million, ha. Be glad Jim beat me to it, I wanted to build a shopping center based around Jack-In-The-Box!!

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sbsmon 6 years, 7 months ago

I agree ID,

They are renters with signed written leases. Now way to claim squatters rights or adverse possession. Both lessor and lessee have been fully aware of the terms regarding the renters possession and use of the property.

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meethinks 6 years, 7 months ago

Gee, when all the low end jobs/workers are gone, and the rich folks wont work those jobs, do you think they will leave and the rest of us could move back? hmmmmmmmmmmm? As a fairly long term local, I have to say that one of the things I loved about Steamboat was the community. You could sit down with a millionare at the book store and they never would make you feel as if you had less than they did. I am also a renter who just cant help but notice how much rent has gone up over the last few years. I work, pay taxes, and contribute to society (in a positive way...) the adult members of my household have a number of jobs and we work hard to live here, but the day is coming that we are going to be pushed out of the way for those rich folks who love the charm of the place but dont want those members of society that make that charm work? seems a bit backward to me, when this town has so much to offer to everyone.

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meethinks 6 years, 7 months ago

Oh yeah, Id- can you think of one person who didn't have an older relative who didn't work through the depression years? Just wondering

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80488mom 6 years, 7 months ago

The Exodus has begun. I personally know of two nurses and another medical professional who are moving on. Cashed in their chips. This town is going to be hurting soon.

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spukomy 6 years, 7 months ago

ColoradoNative, The park cannot be sold for profit so it won't be "flipped". "Owner Occupied Homes" is nothing new. Background and financial checks curb many problems. And bring on the apartments.

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Jason Miller 6 years, 7 months ago

You know someone mentioned before that Dream Island will not have to worry about Jim Cook.The residents of dream island should be worry about all the snow melting.Yes soon steamboat will have its own mini katrina.

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steamboatyahoo 6 years, 7 months ago

jester

o.k. mr. gloom and doom how many people died from Katrina? how many people live in DI?

Yampa maximum flows to date were 1984 run-off and DI survived that. actually the riverbed has been improved since then. so don't think anyone is going to die or be stranded on their roofs for 2 days waiting rescue.

snake island isn't even flooded yet and that used to be fairly common

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id04sp 6 years, 7 months ago

meethinks,

You missed the point. My grandpa had to take a job 150 miles away, leaving the family behind, because that's all he could get. My other grandpa had to move his family 75 miles to take a job.

The difference in this case is that people have jobs, but can't live on what they make. The obvious solution is to move to a place where they can afford housing on what they make.

I'd like to have that big house on the left, over the bridge, as you go up Elk River Road, but I can't afford anything like that. There's no difference between my unrealistic dream and the people in DI who will have to move. The third option where a miracle occurs usually only happens in the movies, or in Greek drama, which always concluded with a god coming down from Olympus to solve a problem beyond the abilities of mortal men.

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steamboatyahoo 6 years, 7 months ago

id

you miss the point

there are jobs in this town that need to get done by somebody. those people that do those jobs need either to get paid more or have someplace that they can afford to live.

during the depression there weren't jobs, which was the problem. your grandfather left somewhere where there were not jobs to a place with jobs. I'm thinking that he probably had a place to sleep at night at that new place where he took his job.

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meethinks 6 years, 7 months ago

id- YOU miss the point, when many of these people moved to DI or other places around the Boat, they could afford to live where they planted thier feet. To bad for them that they have been priced out of homes that were affordable. A good for instance, the first home I rented when we arrived here sold for 150k about five years ago, the SAME home, withOUT any major upgrades, only a deck was added on and new carpet JUST sold for 450,000. Now, we had the pleasure of knowing the folks that bought it from our landlord and were privy to the work they had done on the home. They were as amazed as the rest of the block. Just how can you explain that kind of an increase in prices? Ahhhhhhh SILVER SPUR!!! Oh yeah, the home was repainted as well. Imagine what those increases also do to long term renters like us? If it were not for the fact that we knew someone who knew someone and could vouch that we were good tenants we wouldn't be able to afford any home in that area. Thankfully again good thing for the community influence. It has helped us stay here. Now, as far as going elsewhere? We were relocated here for my husbands job. At the time of the transfer we considered ourselves so very lucky, guess what? He is under contract to remain here for at least another five years. Are you suggesting that those in our situation back out of a contract and leave the client in a pickle? OR do we keep our fingers crossed that we are able to make it here? AND before you answer, keep in ming that my husband has been with his company for 25 years. This was not a decision that we came to lightly. We left both of our families 1000 miles away. We have several side jobs as well as my full time job. Just how do justify telling me that we should just move away?

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Jason Miller 6 years, 7 months ago

Lighten up yahoo it was a comment made in jest.I forgot to many people in town are wound to tight.I could care less about most of these articles im just here to make stupid comments.Plus it would not be such a bad thing if dream island did flood,some of those people could use a bath.Joke i kid,i kid.

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colowoodsman 6 years, 7 months ago

I sympathize with you meethinks. Many people move here and then find out too late how hard it is to stay here. At one time SS really was a friendly town but the tourism/real estate people put an end to that. What I can't understand is the cold callous attitude of those that think that people that are working three jobs to pay the rent can just pick up and move on! They are the 'bottom of the barrel' in my book.

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meethinks 6 years, 7 months ago

colo-thanks! BUT there really are still friendly folks here that are in the same, forgive the pun, "boat' as we are. one of the reasons that we work so hard. yes it would be easy to pack up and move elsewhere where the cost of living isn't so high but why should we? At some point those of us that enjoy the laid back, family based community that we have grown to love have to stand up and say that we are here for the long run. We just need to establish the fact without low lifes like us, the tourists would not come. Just ask some of them sometime, why do you like to visit the boat. Most will agree that it is the locals that make this town special. The long term residents that are not just here to make a buck, those of us that enjoy knowing the majority of our childrens peers and their parents. the simple fact that on any given day any one of us can go into any busy store and see neighbors, friends, co-workers and say hello and know that our kids are encouraged to establish that mentality of 'neighbors". I for one, consider myself very fortunate to be able to say that I feel a sense kinship with these folks. We are so very fortunate to know our children wont grow up with drive bys, and the constant rapes and murders that were the norm in the last city we lived in. The simple fact that something like the possible destruction of XXXX amount of long term homes can raise so many concerns and opinions shows that many do still care and we have to in order to preserve this community. If we allow the constant "upgrades" we will upgrade ourselves right out of the lifestle that many of us work our BE-hinds off to provide for our children. Eventually one must ask, what is the best long term goal? high-end expensive HOUSING or lower priced homes that our neighbors reside in.

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id04sp 6 years, 7 months ago

Steamy and Meethinks,

NO, YOU are the ones still missing the point. Housing is not a right. People who came here without researching the area and understanding what they were getting into should have planned ahead. Reasonable people don't just show up in a new town and hope for the best. That's especially true of an expensive resort town.

What we have here is an unrealistic set of expectations. Anyone who expects to live the rest of their life by renting on somebody else's property is way over the top in being clueless about life.

I sympathize with the people in this situation, but it's a dilemma of their own making. They are the ones ultimately at fault for not looking ahead and doing something different. The truth hurts, but it is the truth.

I would be willing to bet that, if all the people living in DI now had the chance to form a cooperative and buy land and build a suitable trailer park somewhere within 15 miles of Steamboat, many of them would not want to join in. Why? Because it would require them to take on some of the risk of other people not paying up on their share of the expense.

If the people in DI are truly in situations where they have no other choices about a place to live, HUD housing is available near Denver.

http://www.rent.com/rentals/colorado/denver-boulder-and-vicinity/lakewood/479107/

It seems like everyone is saying, "I want a place to park my trailer in Steamboat Springs, and that's the only alternative." That's just not realistic.

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meethinks 6 years, 7 months ago

Id-yes you are missing my entire point, cost of living was researched BEFORE we moved here. based on our incomes, it was a reasonable expence. My point is that housing here has dramatically increased where as incomes have not. Believe me, we didn't just pack up and hit the Boat with a howdy ho and expect hand outs and/or freebies. your comment about people expecting to rent others property for the rest of their lives is just stupid. (Mr. Riches/High&Mighty, for your info, we do own property elsewhere, but for what we could sell it for in the midwest wouldn't get much here, it is not in our best interests to unload those 40plus acres of riverfront farmland at this time....) We rent because no, we cant afford to buy here. Renting was the most fianancially sound decison AT THE TIME we moved here. WE have also found a super school district and would like to have our child graduate with the class he has been in since elementary school, as opposed to other larger schools that do not have same.....wonderful things going for them. You seem to have a very large superiority complex, I dont want a trailor here. Just a decent affordable home based on the incomes availble to us working folks. On the other hand, as you seem to have so many answers and solutions to every possible event here in the Boat, why dont you run for some public office and do something about those of us that seem to be such nasty stain on the bottom of your shoe? As far as a co op, You would just call it a dirty hippie commune and try to take away their noisy nasty children and send them to Denver to foster care anyway. You have already stated in previous forums what horrible parental guidence abounds here. You know, you really are a piece of work.

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mtnspring 6 years, 7 months ago

I've worked on both ends of the Boat. The kind of work I did allowed me to meet all kinds of "locals" from all walks of life. The River people to the people who live in their million dollar homes. There were good and bad people no matter what their income was. It takes all kinds of different people to make a community. If you make it to where only the well off people can live there, then you are going to miss out on some of the people who really build character to your town. Some of the people who have really had to struggle are the ones who have hearts of gold. What doesn't kill you will only make you stronger. Some of you were lucky enough to have a good mind, good health, and no misfortunes, to succeeded in life. My ex-husband was one of the Managers of Playboy Enterprises. I've seen good fortune and now I am older and on my own. I've worked hard but my luck hasn't been as good as others. I've had to struggle at times. Especially when I had our 5 children to raise and wasn't getting child support at the time. Once, we were evicted from our moderate apartment and had to move in with family members. But the experience made us stronger. I know what it is like to have the rug pulled out from under you, several times. I feel for these people. To have problems in your life and then to have your home taken away is a real loss that you upper class people (God willing) will never know how it feels. The people who need a real lesson in life are the ones who are making the mean comments. Life isn't always good for all people. You should have compassion for these people because some day it could happen to you. I didn't see it coming either.Some people from Dream Island are real people. They don't have their noses so high up that they can't see what's a head of them, they don't look down on people for what they don't have. They would give you their last dollar if you needed it. Sometimes money goes to a person head, making them think they have it made. It's what's inside that makes a person. Rich or Poor. Some of you who live in you high and mighty successful lives should go down to the river or low income areas and talk to some of these people and learn some of life's real meaning I'm not talking about the ones who choose to be lazy in life but the ones who have really had to struggle. I'm a lot more happier living in my moderate lifestyle, in another town, then I ever was as in a "well off" lifestyle. My ex-husband lives a very sad and stressful life in his big empty home, because he missed the true meaning of life. I knew lots of people who looked down on people with low incomes but you couldn't have your high priced life style without them. Most of you too, depend on other people, with your low pay for what they do, to help make life easier for you.

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housepoor 6 years, 7 months ago

I'm wondering if JC hopes to use DI to offset some of the affordable housing requirement he may need for future projects, sort of like wetlands mitigation

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mtnspring 6 years, 7 months ago

To the people of Dream Island. Most of us don't like changes especially when there is a past history. I sure didn't like mine, but for every door that closes there is one that is opening. It may take some time to see it, but it's there. I miss my time at the Golden Cue and some of the people I met in Dream Island when my kids were visiting with their dad. Some of you were the most down to earth people I have ever met. You were there for me when I was headed for my changes in life, which at the time I was fighting. It took a while but now I have peace in my life that I consider a gift from above. You all are in my prayers and may you soon find that open door that is a blessing in disguise. Those of you who may have to leave the Boat, it will be a great loss to the town.. God Bless you All.

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id04sp 6 years, 7 months ago

meety,

The difference between the DI residents and all the other people like me who had to move away when we lost our homes and businesses in the Steamboat business climate is that we didn't get a nice color photo and a story in the Pilot.

I had to leave town and work somewhere else for seven years to recover from my Steamboat experience. The difference between you and me is that I already know what's going to happen to you, because I've been there myself. If you don't get up, move away and find some financial success and security somewhere else, you'll end up living in constant financial distress for the rest of your life.

That's not a rich "piece of work" who doesn't care about you talking. It's a guy who worked his way out of a situation a lot worse than yours by being realistic about the Steamboat economy.

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meethinks 6 years, 7 months ago

mtspring-Here Here!! Nice comments! id- Again, you amaze me with your super human intellect and compassion.... Tell me why you continue to put everyone down? Did you grow up in like India with caste system or something? Maybe that is why you feel such need to put yourself so much higher than we low lifes? I seriously doubt most of your amazing tales of woe...you have certainly lived a heck of a life, milatary, P.I., Law....police....your granddaddy had to go away, ect ect ect. If you also lost much as stated above, it would seem to most people with any sense at all that you would be a bit concerned over the loss of the majority of the service industry. Someone with a brain as superior as yours would have to deduce the simple fact that someone has to serve all you richy-rich folks just where are THEY supposed to live? Ahhh...KOA campground? The need to have affordable housing for the working class people will always be here in the Boat. If there isn't any, just how long do you think the tourists will stick around when they have to cook thier own gourmet dinners, or wax thier own skis? Someone has to do it......will you? And again, there is no difference between the DI residents and you, except they dont have such big egos.

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id04sp 6 years, 7 months ago

Meety,

Okay. Stay there until they bulldoze your trailer, and then figure out what to do.

My income does not depend on tourist dollars at all. Not one cent. I learned that lesson already, and I think you're about to be next.

I hope you find an answer that you can live with. Sounds like it's going to be tough.

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meethinks 6 years, 7 months ago

id- FYI I dont live in DI. I live a ways west of town. OK? That means that I am not concerned only for myself. And my domain is in no danger of being bulldozed. Also, maybe the fact that your income does not depend on the tourist dollar explains your lack of concern for the community, can you say CMC? Actually interviewed in Alamosa, we were asked by my husbands company to come here instead. And by the way, the company for which he works has accounts world wide, it ain't no small thang.... As far as my employment, I worked hosp laboratory for a dozen years, seeing as how my husband is the main breadwinner in the family, my job changed as he was promoted and transferred. Now, that you know just a little bit about me, I am not one of those "terrible" people that you associate with trailor parks, nor does my income depend on the tourist dollar. Do you think you could maybe explain to me why I should just go on my merry way because of greedy developers who are making it so very hard for the average family to earn an honest living in the town that just 10 years ago was full of promise to us? hmmmmm..... wipe that off of your Gucci shoe.....

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Russell Orms 6 years, 7 months ago

The comments about how good or decent or kind hearted the DI folks are is just not the point. I'm sure some are great people, some are lousy people and some are a mix. That's true with all levels of income, education, job status etc. The point is that people make choices all their lives. Some work out, some don't. Renting a space in a trailer park or renting in an apt. is not the same as owning and does not carry the same rights. You can not "have your home taken from you" if you did not own it in the first place. If your rent is increased or your apt redeveloped, so be it. Make a new choice of location to rent. That's the way it is. If you can't afford it, then you may have to move. That's the way it is. It has nothing to do with what kind of person you are or how long you have lived there. That's the way it is-so choose. By the way, Steamboat is still friendly, wonderful place to live. It just is not meant to be for everyone. You choose.

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meethinks 6 years, 7 months ago

alpha- very well put! And I agree, we have had to move a few times as renters over the years, but as stated before we are here under contract by our employers, not so easy to just pack up and move elsewhere. You are also so right in the fact that this is a wonderful community and we have met some of the most wonderful people here. We want our child to graduate high school here in a couple of years. I am insulted by id's insinuation that if you dont own property here than you have no business being here. A TON of families rent here and they make up a large portion of the work force, from the hospitol, to the college to the restaurants to Wal-Mart to nearly every service or whatever we use/buy on a daily basis. Do I feel it is a wise choice to own a home on rented property? no it may not be the best choice but many of these families have lived there for years, longer than I have been in the boat. Just because they live in trailor does not give anyone the right to think less of them. I wonder if Id knows that one of the deputies that works for his hero Gary lives there and has for a long time? He is just being a wienie and has annoyed me with his holier than thou attitude towards us locals.

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id04sp 6 years, 7 months ago

Meethinks,

I am glad you are concerned for the people who live in DI even though you don't. I am glad you are doing well with your employment, and all the rest.

I care as much about the community as anyone else, and have done my own part to try to stop the greedy from victimizing people who don't have the money to fight back, and it's almost impossible. Even people who have rights that can be defended in court are afraid of getting stuck with thousands in court costs and lawyer's fees, and they should be. Short of taking an unlawful action against individuals, I don't know how people with lots of money can be stopped from doing whatever it's possible for them to do. When one of the local judges was still an attorney, they represented people who were then, and still are today, systematically victimizing innocent people for a profit in real estate development. The damned lawyers know the law and know how to intimidate people with the threat of financial ruin through court and legal fees, and intentionally go against the law to help their clients obtain money unrightfully, in violation of the law, because in civil court the person with the most money to spend on lawyers wins. Bingo.

I was sorta hoping that our new sheriff and the DA would put an end to some of this crap, but no such luck so far; at least not visibly.

In order for our courts to defend our freedoms, they have to act lawfully in all they do, and it just doesn't happen around here. Some real estate lawyers ask for a favor in court, and they get it. End of story. Judgment expired? Not a problem. It gets renewed anyway. Out of state judgment went bad? Not a problem. Just toss it out in favor of the home-town old-boys-and-girls network.

We have people in this county who have spent hundreds of thousands of dollars of their neighbors' money, collected through homeowner's associations, for personal profit. Need a road built up to those vacant lots you own? Not a problem. Raid the HOA treasury and put down miles of road base for "maintenance" on roads that didn't exist except for muddy ruts before the "maintenance" was done. Isn't that sorta like embezzlement? Well, duh! Of course it is. How do they get away with it? Why, by having a hundred thousand dollars from homeowner's dues sitting around to use for legal fees against anybody who complains. File a complaint against their attorney with the state? Sure, once you get a judgment in your favor against them, and how do you get that? By risking tens of thousands of your own dollars to take them to court in front of a judge who did the same damn thing a few years ago.

So, what do you do? I have decided to be content with the fact that my property value has quadrupled in eleven years, and write the theft of my part of the money off to the cost of doing business. Maybe some day they'll cheat the wrong cowboy, and we'll all get to read about it when the Pilot covers the trial.

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id04sp 6 years, 7 months ago

Meethinks,

I don't know why you think being realistic is being "holier than thou."

When those little houses in Steamboat II hit $500k earlier this year, I hope the renters took notice. When outsiders line up to spend 1/2 million on a modular home, we're in big trouble all around. Every 100k somebody has tied up in a rental house means they need a return of at least $6,000 to $7,000 a year in rent for each 100k that's financed, or they're losing money. They also need another $3,000 to $4,000 for each 100k in equity they put in to buy the place. That means somebody who spent $360k on the house I once owned had better be getting around $17,000 a year in rent, or they'd be better off selling the place and investing the money in something else.

There's nothing wrong with renting. I rented for seven years in another town, but there were plenty of empty houses sitting around that were not occupied at all. When the economy caught up again, and the empty houses started selling, and the property values went up, and people starting building new houses, rents went up and lots of rental houses were sold. Yeah, I worried about it, and was relieved to move away and live in a place I own again.

All I can say is that, if you're working and renting anywhere near Steamboat, there's a commute from Hayden, Craig, OC, Yampa, Clark or Walden in your future if you plan to keep up the gig in Steamboat. It's not a matter of if, but when.

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colowoodsman 6 years, 7 months ago

"That's the way it is" "That's the way it is" "That's the way it is". You sound like a broken record if your old enough to know what that means. The whole point of having a discussion is to understand topics and problems and to explore options and solutions unless, of course you are one of those that likes to profit from others misfortunes.Then just throw up your hands and say nothing should change 'that's the way it is'. If you can't contribute something constructive just buzz off!

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Russell Orms 6 years, 6 months ago

woodsman-sorry you missed my point. I never advocate "just throw up your hands and say nothing should change". My point is the opposite in that many things in life constantly change and after thoughtful consideration of realistic, possible options then one must choose his next path. However to not acknowledge the rules, laws or the way things work is foolish. "That's the way it is" is just a terse way of such acknowledgement. I would like to fly (reference to buzz off) but gravity restricts me. That's the way it is.

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colowoodsman 6 years, 6 months ago

alphapup- I didn't miss anything because there is nothing to miss. You could have also pointed out that 'up is up and down is down'. If gravity impedes your movement I suggest you contact Rob Douglas for some 'hot air' (he has plenty to spare and it's free) to assist you in flying away.

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Russell Orms 6 years, 6 months ago

a little testy this morning Woody? have a good cup of coffee and we can discuss again. alpha

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Gladys 6 years, 6 months ago

Affordable housing? What a joke. Isn't that what Silver Spur was supposed to be? It might be afordable for the first person who buys, but then they turn around and sell it for a huge profit, then again and again until the price is through the roof just like every place else in town. As long as you have greed, you will not get afforable anything.

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id04sp 6 years, 6 months ago

If the people who have wealth invested in second homes in Steamboat and Routt County cared about housing for working-class people, they could easily chip in a few thousand dollars each and solve the problem.

You must understand that the problem is related to land and its cost, and finding someone with enough money already that they will basically donate the land to provide lots for mobile homes is the problem.

Oh, and the thing is, that even if someone did that and provided 200 suitable lots, there would be people standing in line to move to town and occupy them. How do you choose who to exclude?

As I pointed out in an earlier post, HUD housing is available around Denver for people with limited incomes. There's not a shortage of housing in Colorado, but a shortage of realistic expectations about what a person with limited income can do when it comes to housing.

It is possible to live comfortably in Routt County on a fixed or limited income, but the kicker is that you have to bring enough money to town to buy a home and have a reserve for emergencies in addition to the low or fixed income.

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Aly 6 years, 6 months ago

OK all you trailer owners. Its time to think GREEN! You use a lot of heat to heat that square footage!!!!! Its time you considered affordable green housing, with perhaps a plan that would completely take all of you off the grid. If you work with the Feds, the state, and Jim Cook, you could form a beautiful, sustainable community in your spot. Quit griping and get to work!!!!

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id04sp 6 years, 6 months ago

Aly,

Or, Teddy Bears! We could all put Teddy Bears and ribbons down there at the entrance to show our support!

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colowoodsman 6 years, 6 months ago

Id-FYI- there has been Federal assisted housing right here in SS for over 20 yrs. The point that many here are trying to make is that the greed machine cannot exist without workers and workers need housing within a reasonable commuting distance. The local government is willing to 'bend over backwards' to assist the tourism (aka lodging/housing) industry but is met with stiff resistance when they try to assist the underpaid workers that make that industry possible. Judging by the rates they charge for rentals tourism could easily afford to raise wages for workers to keep up with costs of housing/commuting. But any increase in available housing is subject to pressure for tourism rentals.A real Catch 22! So instead of dealing with the problem first hand the tourism people are trying to push this responsibility off on local and federal government.

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id04sp 6 years, 6 months ago

Woody,

Yes, I know the point that everyone is trying to make. I also know that people drive from Craig and Walton to Steamboat to work every day. Wages are not going to keep up with what it costs to live around here. If employers have to, they will increase wages enough to cover the cost of commuting from outlying areas.

In the process, some smaller businesses which exist on a narrow margin are going to fail. People with fewer qualifications, less experience and poor reputations as workers (and there are some) will be the only people left for some of the small businesses, and it will contribute to their demise in the marketplace.

Business is not going to solve the affordable housing problem because business doesn't have the money to do it. Local government can't do anything about it except make it possible to build on land that needs roads, water and sewers put in, and around here that means giving permits for developers to do it. No developer is going to spend money putting in a trailer park when they can make more on single family housing.

Very few people own rental property outright (meaning they have a mortgage on the property), and even if they do, there are expenses associated with keeping it livable. There are also the opportunity costs of taking less rent than the going market rate. Landlords either have to make enough money to cover their expenses, or come up with it out of pocket. The whole issue comes down to people who want to rent expecting landlords to charge less than the market rates, which amounts to an outright gift to the renter. Why should a landlord take all the risk and bear all the expense, and then lose money in the process? Has it occurred to anyone else that some landlords live on what they make from rental properties? Who looks out for their welfare, income and housing? Nobody but them.

If you take a look around town at what people really need, then it comes down to utilities, fuel and groceries. Medical care is nice too, but there's a hospital in Craig. Anything else is a discretionary service or retail operation that people can do without, and the jobs that go with those businesses are disposable. I just don't see where anybody expects the local business owners to provide housing for their employees, because in most cases you will find that those businesses barely make enough to keep a roof over the owner's head as it is.

BTW, I don't write this stuff because I am trying to convince anybody, or defend anyone. I know from my own business experience in Steamboat that a lot of the workers have no idea what a business owner goes through and the risks they take. Workers tend to assume the owner has a lot of money, and that's not always true. When service workers demand rental housing and all that, they need to understand the whole picture. If they really understood, they wouldn't be hanging their futures on somebody else's success.

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Russell Orms 6 years, 6 months ago

not all rich people are shameless or greedy. some are well educated, thoughtful, sharing and most important giving people who support any number of commuity projects.

not all poor people are saints who just work hard all day and just need a helping hand. some are poor by lifesyle, ambition, work ethic or simple choice.

Steamboat has good/bad poor people and good/bad rich people. But the vast majority in Steamboat are people in the middle who have a little bit of both in them.

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meethinks 6 years, 6 months ago

It all boils down to time management! Just how many full and part time jobs can one family fit into their schedule in order to live in the valley? Is family time important to you? If so, plan on living in a teepee in the campgrounds a few months a year and spend time with the little ones whenever you can. Gee it is all about the quality of life.... OH MY GOSH!!!!!! The raccoon that killed the lights the other night was really just trying to provide life insurance pay-offs for his family... his rent had been raised as well, AND he could no longer find an affordable alternative to his current housing problems.......... it was suicide people!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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nancylou777 6 years, 6 months ago

Karma! It will get you in the end! Never think you can judge someone without someone else judging you. Are you truly better than anyone in DI because you have more money or live in an "acceptable" place. My friends and family work very hard to live in the town most of them grew-up in. They love Steamboat and want their kids to grow-up in the same town they did. What is sad is that Steamboat isn't the same town. The rich and shameless are taking over and our home town is being made commercial. DI will just be a memory for those of us who lived there just as the real steamboat will be soon enough.

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id04sp 6 years, 6 months ago

Meety,

". . . he could no longer find an affordable alternative to his current housing problems.........."

I think the raccoon did, indeed, find an alternating current solution to his housing problems.

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Steve Lewis 6 years, 6 months ago

There are good community character reasons for building affordable housing. But there is only so much political traction there, and actually a good bit of opposition, per above comments.

The reason that will eventually find great traction for affordable housing, and little opposition, will be our economy. Wages are starting to go up, and many think that housing will soon regain some balance. It will not be soon, if recent studies are correct.

The Associated Governments of Northwest Colorado (The 5 counties to our West?) just received a Socio-Economic Study on the 5 counties to our West, researching the effects of the energy boom. Those counties are entering into housing and worker shortages that are expected to grow significantly.

Regretably I only have the PDF and couldn't find the report link with Google. The executive summary states:

"Eagle, Pitkin and Routt counties: These resort and retiree dominated economies sit on the periphery of the study area. For many years, study area communities offered a relief valve for resort driven employee housing. This absorption capacity is largely gone and the resort area counties will have to act much more aggressively to find and house workers."

Are we doing this?

-Steve Lewis

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rsssco 6 years, 6 months ago

I noticed this on the front page of today's print version of the paper and see that the last Sunday's editorial on this subject has been modified.

C O R R E C T I O N Green Courte Partners' acquisition of Dream Island Mobile Home Park would help the development group satisfy its affordable housing requirements for the River Walk development. An editorial on page 4A of Sunday's Steamboat Pilot & Today incorrectly reported the acquisition also would help satisfy the affordable housing requirements for the Alpenglow and Howelsen Place developments.

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meethinks 6 years, 6 months ago

Oh ID, we still must disagree...... The poor raccoon did not find alternative housing.....I think he was just hoping to leave enough behind for his family to find the alternative housing..................:)

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id04sp 6 years, 6 months ago

Meety,

"I think the raccoon did, indeed, find an alternating current solution to his housing problems."

The "alternating current" put this little bugger in a place where he has no more housing problems.

Must I graph the pun for you?

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meethinks 6 years, 6 months ago

My sincere apologies! That was quite witty!!!!! But I still think there was life insurance involved............ !!!!!!! Have a good weekend ID, till our next disagreement! Take care!

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thecondoguy1 6 years, 6 months ago

lewi, Steve, why not let the " community character " be taken care of by time and the free market? This social engineering could end badly for us all.............

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spukomy 6 years, 6 months ago

Isn't it odd that the City Council and the Housing Authority haven't commented on this yet?

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