Hayden The Hayden Town Council on Thursday unanimously approved a memorandum of understanding with Routt County for the operation of a disc golf course at Dry Creek Park that had some council members concerned because of its proximity to a wetlands mitigation area.
The memorandum will allow the course near the Routt County Fairgrounds to remain open. Before the vote, some council members expressed frustration that the memorandum was necessary.
“All of this could have been avoided, including the memorandum,” council member Dallas Robinson said. “The fact of the matter is because the course wasn’t placed where it was supposed to be, there has been a considerable amount of work done to fix this.”
The holes for the course originally were placed by a local disc golf group on county property near the fairgrounds but were not placed according to the county’s plan, which necessitated the agreement with the county. Before approving the memorandum, the council stressed that the wetlands must be protected.
“We’ll be working to get things posted that will help keep people out of the wetlands,” Hayden Town Manager David Torgler said. “We all know how important it is for disc golf players to police themselves and not be entering and destroying wetlands to retrieve their discs.”
He said players using the course should put their names and phone numbers on discs so that if they are thrown into the wetlands, they can be recovered and returned when it’s safe for someone to enter the mitigation area. Torgler said if players don’t stay within the course boundaries, it could be closed.
“If we find that (the wetlands) are damaged, we may not only be losing the disc golf holes that are there, but everything else on the course,” he said. “We need to make sure players understand that.”
Fairgrounds manager Jill Delay said that a course hole that had been placed 5 to 10 feet from the wetlands area without the county’s permission has been moved and that there have been no issues with players entering the protected area that now is 100 feet from the course.
“The county’s happy, and we’re happy,” Delay said before the agreement was approved. “We want to be good neighbors.”
A vote to approve the agreement with the county failed, 3-3, at the council’s June 2 meeting, which prompted the council to review it again Thursday with members of the local disc golf community present. Hayden Mayor Jim Haskins and council members Bill Hayden and Dallas Robinson opposed the motion when it first was presented.
After the approval of the memorandum Thursday, Hayden Parks and Recreation board member and course supporter Amy Wilson said she was glad the agreement was reached.
“I’m happy it has come to a reasonable resolution,” Wilson said. “This course is important for the community. There are people playing on it every day.”
Also Thursday, Town Council:
■ Approved the closure of Third Street in front of Hayden Town Park from 5 p.m. July 15 to 5 p.m. July 16 for Hayden Daze street events, the closure of Jefferson Avenue from Third Street east to Pine Street from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. July 16 for the Hayden Daze parade and a special event liquor license for the festivities.
■ Approved the transfer of Wolf Mountain Pizza’s Colorado liquor license from Stacy Magee to Charlie Epp and a temporary liquor permit from Hayden until the state approves the transfer. Epp said this week that he hoped to reopen the restaurant Tuesday after cleaning and remodeling.
■ Approved an extended agreement with the Upper Yampa River Conservancy District to store 300 acre-feet of water at the Yamcolo Reservoir. The 30-year agreement will raise the price per acre-foot to $68.38 from $27, the cost for the past 30 years. The increase was included in this year’s budget. An acre-foot is the amount of water required to cover an acre of land to a depth of 1 foot. One acre-foot equals nearly 326,000 gallons.
■ Postponed an agenda item requesting $6,000 for the Hayden Heritage Center until July 7. The funds would be used to expand the museum, and Torgler said a similar request was funded in 2010 but not budgeted this year.
■ Announced that Hayden’s sales tax revenues were down 9 percent in April compared with a year ago but that revenues remained $35,000 than last year. “It’s been a good year so far,” Torgler said. “We’ve gone through our highest earning months, and the rest of year we’ll just have to monitor.”
■ Heard a presentation of the Northwest Colorado Energy Education plan by Yampa Valley Partners. The presentation outlined ways the city could help promote energy conservation by educating builders about how to maximize energy efficiency. After the presentation, council members participated in a Steamboat Springs Area Community Plan update. The board indicated that sustainability, commercial air service, technology infrastructure, regional transportation and sustaining the coal industry and ranching were top priorities for the town.
— To reach Scott Franz, call 970-871-4210 or email scottfranz@SteamboatToday.com