October Mayor’s Minute

Mayor's Minute

Words by Dan Jansen / Mayor's Minute

Dear neighbors,

I hope you are enjoying the tail end of our beautiful Fall season and are contemplating when to get those skis out and tuned up. Let me apologize in advance for a very long Mayor’s Minute as we have several important matters to report on, including actions taken in our usual meetings and our special budget meeting.

September 22 Meeting Highlights

1 > Town Council reappointed Gary Bash to represent Mountain Village on the Telluride Regional Airport Authority Board. Special thanks to others who threw their hat in the ring; I know your opportunity to serve will come. Airport Manager Rich Nuttall provided an update on the significant improvements happening over the coming year including new aprons, resurfacing, an expanded FBO and the work being done to reintroduce commercial service this December.

2 > Town Council endorsed the creation of the San Miguel Authority for Regional Transportation, which will appear on the November ballot.

3 > An ordinance to prohibit the subdivision of single-family lots in areas zoned residential passed on second reading.

4 > Town Council unanimously adopted a resolution in support of Indigenous Peoples Day, which took place October 8.

5 > Town Council approved a revised parking rates system that emphasizes more free parking in order to create a visitor experience that is easier and more convenient. With that, beginning November 15 motorists will be able to download the free Parkmobile application, allowing them to pay for parking via the app, extend their allotted parking time without having to travel back to the garage or lot, and receive parking reminders directly on their smart phone.

6 > Town Council decided not to proceed with the potential sale of Village Court Apartments citing concerns of losing this critical asset for its workforce, and the potential loss of the employee deed restriction should a new owner enter into bankruptcy. That said, town learned about some of the benefits of a possible sale and decided to form a small taskforce to explore those benefits without actually selling the asset.

7 > Town Council reviewed a first draft of the 2107 budget as the next step in our rigorous and detailed budget process. Council is targeting a slightly lower operational budget compared to last year’s budget, and will isolate the investment areas that will result in a drawdown of reserves, including a four percent compensation increase for employees, which is at the mid-point of the range of resort town benchmarks.

8 > The town’s capital investments will drawdown reserves by $1.2 million due to the purchase and buildout of the new park in the Meadows neighborhood. In addition, the mill levy (taxes) will drop from 11.8 mils to 1.8 mills in 2018 given the pay down of the Telluride Conference Center and some water and sewer debt. This represents a nice tax cut for our constituents.

9 > That said, the waste water plant will likely increase our mill levy in future years as a multi-million dollar expansion is being planned to accommodate our growth and comply with new FDA standards.

10 > Telluride TV reported on the use of its new television facility in Mountain Village, citing several examples where the network broadcast facility was used 87 times since it opened its doors in May, and created a media ad value impact of $1.8 million.

11 > Hilary Cooper provided an update on the regional Forest Health Initiative aimed to create a landscape assessment of the forest shared with the other governments.

12 > Director Dawn Katz reported on the Mountain Munchkins program, which is thriving. As one of the only infant care facilities in the region, Dawn reported a waitlist and Town Council asked to contemplate expanding the facility and program.

Three weeks later, Town Council convened for a Special Town Council meeting focused on the 2017 budget where councilmembers walked through each department’s detailed submissions. Restating the discussions of an eight-hour hour meeting would fill pages. Instead, some key takeaways worth pointing out follow.

October 13 Budget Meeting Highlights

1 > Town Council approved a resolution supporting the small mill levy reinstatement vote to continue operations at the Lone Tree Cemetery, which is a historic gem in our community.

2 > Town Council discussed a significant drop in the mill level for the town resulting from the pay-off of the Telluride Conference Center debt at the end of 2017.

3 > Town Council agreed to fund the Telluride Conference Center marketing and capital at the same level as in years past and to form a subcommittee to determine the best management of the facility after 2017.

4 > Town Council endorsed an increase in the guest service budget in order to offer additional guest service hours during the summer months in Oak Street Plaza in Telluride and in Mountain Village Center. Council also discussed expanding the Guest Service Program through the winter season.

5 > Administrative budgets included only modest increases related to merit increases, but were generally flat.

6 > The town’s child care development fund continues to subsidize infant and early child care in the community, and the waitlist continues to grow. With that, Council asked that the budget include planning funds in order to evaluate whether an expansion or relocation of the facility is needed. The recent closure of a childcare facility in Telluride has exacerbated this pressure.

7 > The Plaza & Environmental Services team is adding a staff member to continue to support the growing number of events and activities in the town and on the plazas.

8 > The Cable and Broadband Department will expand its capacity in the core of town almost four times, which is part of the town’s continuing goal of providing excellent Internet and cell services in our small remote town.

9 > Public Works Department director spoke to the town’s many assets: buildings, roads, vehicles, water and waste treatment. Budgets are generally flat, though Council anticipates a significant cost coming over the next few years for the upgrade and expansion of the waste water treatment plant.

10 > The road maintenance budget is following the current resurfacing plan, though a recent road failure on Touchdown Drive could impact this plan.

11 > The Police Department is flat with staffing levels comparable to last year.

12 > Employee shuttle and bus services are held flat and will be part of the larger regional transportation discussion moving forward if the transportation ballot initiative passes in the upcoming election.

13 > The gondola budget was flat, though we are working with the Telluride Mountain Village Owners Association to potentially add between nine and 12 cabins on the mainline, increase maximum speed where possible, and move the bike racks from the doors to the back of the cabins where structurally possible.

14 > Town Council approved Mountain Village’s cost share of a Forest Service ranger to help manage regional trails due to current and expected heavy trail use.

15 > Town Council reviewed a list of capital expenditures including backup power generation for Town Hall, implementation of the wayfinding project, and several others.

16 > Town Council agreed on a public process to develop plans for the Meadows Park if the public-private partnership to develop up to 45 workforce housing units on the neighboring lots goes through.

17 > The Planning and Development Services Department showed a flat budget versus last year, which was a peak year. It may be difficult to hold to a flat budget as town senses a lot of projects in the pipeline.

18 > Finally, we considered a series of requests for community grants including Juvenile Diversion, EcoAction Partners, San Miguel Resource Center, Tri-County Health Network and others. Most received a positive reaction though more financial information and data was requested in some cases.

Overall, it was a rigorous, long day. The public and Town Council will have several more meetings to review the 2017 budget as it firms up.

This week Town Council will return to its regularly scheduled meeting with another full agenda with several important items.

October 20 Agenda Highlights

1 > Staff with present the first draft of the schematic wayfinding project design.

2 > Town Council will conditionally appoint directors to the yet-to-be-approved San Miguel Authority for Regional Transportation (SMART) so if this ballot initiative passes in November, the committee can get to work immediately.

3 > Town Council will consider a Colorado Communities for Climate Action policy statement for purposes of approval.

4 > The usual array of staff and Council updates along with routine land use matters are part of the October 22 agenda.

5 > Finally, Town Council will consider a Memorandum of Understanding with the Town of Telluride and San Miguel County regarding the hire of an owners representative relating to the town’s work across the three governments on workforce housing opportunities.

As always, please join us if you can for this Thursday’s Town Council meeting and/or share you thoughts in advance.

Warm Regards,
Dan Jansen
Mountain Village Mayor

September Mayor’s Minute

Mayor's Minute

Words by Dan Jansen / Mayor's Minute

Dear neighbors,

I hope you are enjoying this wonderful summer weather and all of the great activities and events that this time of year offers.

It certainly continues to be a busy season in Mountain Village. Last month Marketing Telluride Inc., otherwise known as the Telluride Tourism Board, highlighted the record summer season we are having in terms of visitation, sales tax and occupancy. While we feel special, it is important to note many communities across Colorado are achieving records, too. Clearly our state has been discovered, and how we manage this success is an emerging issue. Accordingly, we participated in the quarterly intergovernmental meeting discussion on whether we are “too busy”. The outcome of that discussion is to form a subcommittee across the governments and with the Ski Company to manage the heavy summer tourist volume, recognizing that visitation drives our economy. In addition, Mountain Village approved a series of rules and resolutions for the upcoming November 8 election that will likely include many interesting local issues in addition to state and national decisions.

August 18 Meeting Highlights

Intergovernmental meeting aside, at the August Town Council Meeting the packed agenda included the following highlights.

1 > Council approved the First Reading of the Community Development Code resolution prohibiting single-family lot subdivisions.

2 > CenturyLink provided an update regarding the recent Internet and cell service outages. Council pushed for more tangible plans for redundancy and consistent service, and expects to review CenturyLink’s plans at a future meeting.

3 > County Commissioner Goodtimes asked Council to support Indigenous Peoples Day set for October 8. Some of the day’s events will take place in Mountain Village, including the reading of a resolution welcoming the Ute people to the community.

4 > Council continues to work on a joint parking fund with Telluride Ski & Golf Company (TSG), and potentially Telluride Mountain Village Owners Association (TMVOA), to help keep daytime parking free at the Gondola Parking Garage.

5 > A representative from Continental Acquisition Corporation discussed with Council the conditions and potential for a sale of Village Court Apartments.

6 > The Forest Service presented a proposal asking Mountain Village to help fund a seasonal recreation ranger who would oversee our trail network and manage the growing impact of heavy usage.

7 > Council and the Design Review Board (DRB) met jointly to discuss the town’s design standards and brainstorm how to stay current with evolving design trends while staying consistent with the alpine setting. The DRB will develop specific proposals through a public process to evolve the town’s roof sloping, glass glazing, materials/colors and other rules. What we have observed is many of the projects being built require variations, leading us to ask whether our codes reflect the current market and preferences of our community. If you have an interest in design regulations, please speak up. Any potential changes will be shared publicly before coming back to Council for consideration and a public vote.

8 > The San Miguel Watershed Coalition reported on their work preserving the only free-flowing river in Colorado, the San Miguel.

9 > Paul Reich shared the Tri-County Health Network’s San Miguel County Behavioral Health Strategic Plan to educate Council and seek support for expanding mental health services. Council expressed an interest in dedicating a portion of  liquor sales tax revenue to address substance abuse and other behavioral health issues.

10 > The town’s environmental services director proposed a new incentive program for water conservation that received strong support.

To close the August meeting summary, I would note that all of the items discussed last month that involve funding will be vetted through our usual budget process for 2017.

Going forward, we have a very busy September schedule. To begin, the Subarea Planning Committee – made up of representatives from Mountain Village, TMVOA, TSG and AECOM – will host the Town Hall Center Subarea Planning Workshop Tuesday, September 20 at the Telluride Conference Center beginning at 6:30 p.m. Please attend this workshop or share your thoughts if you have an opinion on the Town Hall Center Subarea. This advisory group will propose some changes for Town Council to consider at the conclusion of their work.

In addition, Town Council will meet this Thursday to move through another packed agenda.

September 22 Agenda Highlights

1 > Rich Nuttal will present the Telluride Regional Airport Authority’s biannual report, which will include an update on the return of commercial service to the Telluride Airport this December.

2 > Town Council will decide whether to take a position to support the establishment and funding of the San Miguel Authority for Regional Transportation, which will appear on the November ballot.

3 > Mountain Village’s Parking Committee will present its policies for new parking regulations for the coming year for Council’s consideration.

4 > Council will consider a request to fund a new and significantly upgraded sound system for the Telluride Conference Center.

5 > Council will hold a worksession to discuss and better design the process by which the town grants money to deserving organizations.

6 > The executive director of the new Mountain Village TellurideTV facility will update us on how the facility is being utilized.

7 > And finally, in addition to some routine staff and Council reports as well as land use matters, Council will receive an update on the recently held forest health stakeholder meeting.

As always, please join us if you can for this Thursday’s Town Council meeting and/or share you thoughts in advance.

Warm Regards,
Dan Jansen
Mountain Village Mayor

August Mayor’s Minute

Mayor's Minute

Words by Dan Jansen / Mayor's Minute

Dear neighbors,

I hope you have been enjoying the wonderful summer weather. It’s hard to imagine spending time somewhere other than Mountain Village.

Speaking of Mountain Village, we began last month’s Town Council meeting recognizing our police officers who serve our citizens daily. While we generally feel quite safe in our little town, the recent horrific events around the country remind us of the risk police officers face every day. Taking the opportunity to simply step back and say “thank you” is important to do.

From there, Town Council shifted into the usual mix of routine land use matters, staff and council reports, and special topics.

July Meeting Highlights

1 > Town Council asked staff to work with the Town of Telluride to engineer a sidewalk on the south side of San Juan Avenue near the gondola station. This structural change may modify the gondola building to ensure better access and line queuing. If Mountain Village pursues this, the Telluride Mountain Village Owners Association (TMVOA) and Telluride Ski & Golf Company (TSG) will be involved.

2 > Town Council participated in a lengthy discussion regarding single-family lot subdivisions. Town Council accepted the Design Review Board’s (DRB) recommendation to ban single-family lot subdivisions. Given that this recommendation was materially different from staff’s recommendation, Town Council extended the current moratorium banning subdivisions in order to consider a new ordinance banning subdivisions at the next two Town Council meetings.

3 > The Mountain Village Finance Department staff and third-party auditor announced a clean audit report for the 2015 fiscal year. Well done finance team!

4 > Town Council considered the merits of responding to an unsolicited offer to buy Village Court Apartments (VCA). With mixed views on the merits of selling this critical public asset, but with an eye towards fiduciary duty, Councilmembers McKinley and Jett were asked to invite the potential buyer to attend the August Town Council meeting to discuss ways in which VCA would be enhanced and preserved under a sale scenario.

5 > Town Council received public comment on the draft Intergovernmental Agreement supporting a potential Regional Transit Authority (RTA). Council subsequently approved a resolution that would put the RTA formation and taxation on the November ballot.

6 > The Telluride Foundation presented a report on the merits of public-private partnerships to progress workforce housing opportunities. Town Council indicated its interest in sharing resources in order to identify and drive regional workforce housing solutions. The Town of Telluride and San Miguel County are considering the same idea, and if all agree, a roadmap will be developed. Moreover, in a joint worksession with the DRB, all parties agreed to improve the elevation and approval processes for new developments.

7 > Finally, Town Council discussed their monthly meeting schedule. While fairly benign, Council will continue to experiment with times and formats that make the meetings most accessible to the entire community.

August Meeting Highlights

1 > The Telluride Tourism Board will share its most recent data on yet another record tourism season.

2 > Mountain Village’s town clerk will advise on issues and process related to the upcoming November election.

3 > Town Council will continue its discussion on lot line subdivisions and consider an ordinance banning them.

4 > County Commissioner Goodtimes will ask for support of Indigenous Peoples Day scheduled for October 8.

5 > In an effort to create a new town park, Town Council will review a purchase agreement for the acquisition of a portion of Lot 640A in the Meadows neighborhood.

6 > Together with TMVOA and TSG, Council will discuss the idea of free day-time parking in the Gondola Parking Garage, which merchants, residents and visitors all seem to support.

7 > In a joint worksession, DRB and Town Council will focus on design regulations as outlined in the Community Development Code to ensure Mountain Village stays current with evolving design trends in mountain communities.

8 > The party interested in acquiring Village Court Apartments will attend a worksession with Town Council; no action will be taken.

9 > In addition to learning about how the Telluride Conference Center is performing, Paul Reich will lead a discussion about mental health services in the region, and Town Council will discuss regional forest service shared services.

As usual, please share your thoughts in advance, or better yet, join us in person or online if you can.

Warm Regards,
Dan Jansen
Mountain Village Mayor

July Mayor’s Minute

Mayor's Minute

Words by Dan Jansen / Mayor's Minute

Dear neighbors,

Despite the challenges of staying in-doors, your local government continues to work hard on many important issues. Last month, we made some important appointments to town boards including Angela Pashayan on the Ethics Commission and Liz Caton to the Design Review Board. I want to specifically thank not only those who are willing to serve, but all of the folks who threw their hat in the ring and showed a willingness to serve. Thank you all and your opportunity will come soon, so please stay engaged.

Boards aside, we supported a letter to our senators to support the San Juan Mountains Wilderness Bill. In addtiion, we received public comment in a public hearing on the Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) with the Town of Telluride and San Miguel County to create a Regional Transit Authority (RTA) that could be on the ballot this November. It is important to note that your Council has fought for and secured the right of not only our residents, but also our second homeowners to vote on the RTA. Also, our planning director updated us on the Town Hall Center Subarea planning process that we are undertaking with the Telluride Mountain Village Owners Association and Telluride Ski & Golf. That effort will next select the consultant who will drive the process beginning this summer.

We also received a report on grant making best practices that our Council will consider as we formalize our process for how the town supports important causes in our community. There was a collective desire to clarify the ‘theories of change’ that we would consider funding and getting more proactive so that we will drive towards these shared goals.

We considered a term sheet from the developers of the old Telluride Apartments site in the Meadows that would create a town park and up to 45 workforce housing units. The parties are close to an agreement and Councilmembers Caton and MacIntire will work to close out the deal once an acceptable appraisal is received.

Last, we considered adding and installing a mobile-based application to manage parking that allows our residents and guest to pay through their phones or extend their parking time from their phones. Staff is further evaluating this opportunity (which would exist in addition to our current ticket-based system).

This month our work continues. We will begin our meeting later this week with a special recognition of our Mountain Village police officers. The horrific events in Dallas and Baton Rouge remind us of the important work they do, and while we feel insulated from these big city issues in our small town, we simply want to take a moment and thank our officers publicly. We will then move into our usual business and routine updates from Council and staff. We will consider a set of proposed changes from our Design Review Board on single-family lot subdivisions, and given that the town recently received an expression of interest from a private company in buying Village Court Apartments, Council will conduct a worksession on the merits of a potential sale versus ongoing town ownership. We will have a second reading of the proposed IGA for an RTA, where we hope to receive public input. Next, the Telluride Foundation will lead a discussion on the merits of public-private partnerships in the creation of workforce housing in the region. Finally, we will have a joint discussion with our Design Review Board on our shared processes for reviewing construction in the town with the goal of continuous improvement.

Outside of our town-specific activities, we continue to work with our neighboring local, state and federal governments on issues facing our community. For example, I recently met with Senator Bennet to discuss important issues facing Mountain Village, and he was highly engaged and interested in helping us where possible. Later this week, we will be working with the Town of Telluride, San Miguel County, and the Tri-County Health Network on the pressing need for better mental health services in our region. Mayor Murphy of Telluride and I will be meeting with our counterparts from Montrose to discuss more regional cooperation scenarios soon. Many more examples exist that I would be happy to share with you, but suffice it to say, I don’t think I have seen our region cooperating so effectively in many, many years.

As always, we welcome your input and attendance in our meetings, so please join in.

Warm Regards,
Dan Jansen
Mountain Village Mayor

June Mayor’s Minute

Mayor's Minute

Words by Dan Jansen / Mayor's Minute

Dear neighbors,

I hope you are enjoying the arrival of summer; it’s great to see many of our second homeowners coming home to Mountain Village.

Our town remains very busy. Last month we received an update from the Telluride Tourism Board and Colorado Flights Alliance showing great results in terms of our destination and air service (e.g. Mountain Village had the highest three-year growth rate in sales tax revenue of any town in the Colorado Association of Ski Towns). In addition, we launched the wayfinding project that will help all of us, including our visitors and guests, navigate our town more easily. There will be extensive public engagement for this project, so please think about participating in wayfinding stakeholder meetings.

Last month, we also received and approved a request to partially fund the Ideas Festival, which will focus on creating new and more regional workforce housing solutions. In that same vein, we considered a term sheet from the developers of Lot 640A, formerly Telluride Apartments and located in the Meadows, where the town would own a park that would sit next to the privately-funded and owned potential workforce housing project. Council was supportive of creating the park and incentivizing the creation of more workforce housing in a public-private-partnership. Continuing, we finalized an agreement with TMVOA and Telluride Ski & Golf Company to share costs on the maintenance and upkeep of the Gondola Plaza in Mountain Village Center. We also evaluated the potential to add back-up power generation to Town Hall and town shops so that in the event of a future power outage, we will have emergency locations for the town with power, food (i.e. keep The Market at Mountain Village running), and fuels (available from the town shops). Responding to some resident concerns, we also discussed potential changes in the town’s Community Development Code to further limit single-family lot subdivisions. Further limitations on the ability to sub-divide single-family lots were discussed, and we received public comment. In turn, we directed staff to present a proposal for us to consider at the worksession this Thursday.

This month the activity keeps coming. We will have a public discussion about creating the San Miguel Authority for Regional Transit (SMART) and look for public input on the Intergovernmental Agreement we have drafted with the Town of Telluride and San Miguel County that would allow for the formation of SMART. There will be a brief informational update on the Town Hall Center Subarea planning process. Continuing our discussion from the last meeting, there will be a public hearing on some potential changes to the Community Development Code addressing concerns raised by some residents on the ability to subdivide single-family lots. Finally, in addition to our usual routine land use matters and staff updates, we will consider a term sheet offered by the developers of Lot 640A (formerly Telluride Apartments) that could entail a town park and workforce housing for up to 45 units.

As always, we hope you will be able to join us for our meeting this Thursday and/or provide comments to us in advance.

Warm Regards,
Dan Jansen
Mountain Village Mayor

P.S. Telluride Ski & Golf Company will be sealing the Gondola Plaza deck beginning this week. Please pardon the dust, noise and inconvenience. We understand the timing is not ideal, but due to late snowfall and rain the project had to be delayed until a prolonged period of warm, dry weather was in the forecast.

May Mayor’s Minute

Mayor's Minute

Words by Dan Jansen / Mayor's Minute

Dear neighbors,

I suspect those of you in town are like me: done with all of this snow! Summer is almost here.

That said, your local government continues to work hard on your behalf. Last month, we approved, on first reading with a second reading scheduled for May 19, a franchise agreement with Crown & Castle to install a DAS solution (dispersed antenna system) in Mountain Village to improve the function of our cell network (target go-live date of Fall 2017). We had a deep dive into our energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions with three reports by our environmental services director and from EcoAction Partners. In what sounds like bad news, the reports show that we have increased our generation of Greenhouse Gases (GHG) this last year, moving us away from an already achieved town goal of reducing GHG 20 percent from 2010 levels at government-owned facilities. That said, this is somewhat misleading as the increase was driven by a higher “emissions factor” used to estimate the GHG driven by Tri-State’s energy mix as passed through San Miguel Power Association (SMPA). In short, dirtier electricity was generated this year versus prior years as Colorado still relies more heavily on coal than many other states. Regardless of where you sit on these issues, we have no ability to impact the source energy mix. That said, Tri-State is projecting an improvement next year given more use of natural gas in their system. Apologies for all of that detail, but I want everyone to understand the realities beneath the headlines. The good news is that actual energy usage and costs are down over seven percent versus our baseline year of 2010. SMPA also detailed an income-qualified program to help homeowners reduce energy consumption through more solar and better weatherization. Town Council is discussing whether to create a similar program where we incent all property owners, regardless of income level, to make their homes more energy efficient. Please share your thoughts on this.

In response to resident concerns, we also passed a temporary moratorium prohibiting new applications for the subdividing of single-family lots so that we can review the existing rules and share more information. Future meetings will discuss data gathered from other resort towns, and we can decide whether we want to change our approach (which has always allowed for these subdivisions, though very few have ever been approved). We also had a goal setting discussion for the 2017 budget process, which is actually starting now.

This week we have another packed agenda. The three governments met again to progress the Regional Transportation Authority (RTA), which included a review of the polling conducted across the community to see where our residents are on the idea of forming an RTA. We also had an intergovernmental meeting on the topics of climate change and local community strategies. Both meetings illustrate the deepening engagement and coordination between the towns and the county on issues facing our region.

Mountain Village Town Council will consider many important issues later this week, in addition to our usual array of routine land use matters, staff and Town Council reports. We will kick off our wayfinding efforts with the intent to make navigating our town easier. The town has received a term sheet from the owners of Lot 640A where the town is considering buying a portion of the property to build a park in the Meadows neighborhood. We will also get a staff report on the topic of single-family lot subdivisions focusing on how similar towns handle these matters. Other reports include an update on the Gay Ski Week event and how it performed during this transition year to local, private oversight. Perhaps in a related discussion, we will review the role that the town could or may play in developing and/or managing special events.

As always, we hope you can attend or watch the meeting online. If not, please share your thoughts in whatever way you are most comfortable.

Warm Regards,
Dan Jansen
Mountain Village Mayor

Temporary moratorium on subdividing single-family lots passes

Planning Applications

Words by Nichole Zangara / Development

Mountain Village Town Council passed an emergency ordinance imposing a temporary moratorium at its April meeting which prohibits any applicant who wants to add additional lots and transfer additional density on lots zoned single-family residential pursuant to Section 17.3.4(F)(4) of the Community Development Code. With one absent, five of the six councilmembers voted in favor of the moratorium, which went into effect immediately and is set to expire August 1, 2016.

In recent months, Mountain Village residents and property owners have expressed their concern about a land use law that gives any property owner the ability to subdivide single-family lots within town limits. Due to the volume at which concerns were expressed, Town Council voted to pass the moratorium so they could, as elected officials, engage in conversations with constituents and understand their concerns without the possibility of an application being submitted. A pending application limits Town Council’s ability to discuss any relative issues regarding an application since councilmembers are not allowed to have any ex-parte communications.

According to town officials, the temporary moratorium does not prohibit one from submitting a minor subdivision application, such as lot line vacation and lot line adjustments, a PUD application on lots zoned anything other than single-family residential, or any other development application which is permissible pursuant to the Community Development Code. Moreover, the moratorium does not determine the outcome of Town Council’s deliberations into the issues raised by residents and property owners. It simply gives Council the ability to educate, listen and make an informed decision.

The concerns raised by residents and property owners stem from a 2015 amendment to the Community Development Code related to Section 17.3.4(F)(4), in which the amendment itself didn’t give the ability to subdivide single-family lots, but rather clarified the previous language and refined the process required to accomplish such a subdivision. Therefore, Town Council will examine this language along with previous language in both the Community Development Code and its predecessor, the Land Use Ordinance, which also allowed for the subdivision of single-family lots, along with surveying other similarly situated communities during the period afforded by the moratorium.

April Mayor’s Minute

Mayor's Minute

Words by Dan Jansen / Mayor's Minute

Dear neighbors,

I hope you have successfully transitioned into the shoulder season and are thinking about what the Spring will bring to our lovely town (hopefully less snow).

Despite the slowing level of activity, town government continues its work. Last month Town Council received a report from the San Miguel Power Association about the “Telluride Reliability Project” that will add redundancy for electrical services in the event of a blackout similar to the February event. The project will start this Fall and hopefully be completed next summer (potential issues involve permitting from San Miguel County and the Forest Service). We will also schedule a worksession on other actions we should take in a future outage (e.g. phone charging stations, gas distribution, signage and communications). We also had a deep dive into fire risk throughout Mountain Village. First the West Region Wildfire Council discussed fire risk by region and parcel, then we reviewed current regulations, and finally introduced an incentive program for each home to create defensible space around their property. We heard an update from the Telluride Historical Museum including a focused discussion on their plan to reduce their deficit. Council considered a draft of a Regional Transportation Authority Intergovernmental Agreement (RTA IGA) and brainstormed ways to increase engagement in our upcoming gondola study in partnership with TMVOA, Town of Telluride, San Miguel County and Telluride Ski & Golf Company. Finally, in addition to the usual land use matters and staff reports, we discussed a potential new grant process to manage Mountain Village’s support of regional organizations.

This month, another full agenda awaits us. The town has heard some concerns from residents about the ability to sub-divide single-family lots and will conduct a worksession to share information and consider a temporary moratorium on such actions. We will receive an update on the wayfinding proposal and scope of work, regional greenhouse gas inventories, and EcoAction Partners energy programs. In addition, we will have a first reading of an ordinance approving a franchise agreement for the installation of a dispersed antenna network intended to improve cell coverage. Finally, we will have our usual array of routine land use matters, staff updates and Council reports.

I hope you will be able to join us for the meeting this Thursday, either online or in-person; if not, please be sure to provide your input in advance.

Warm Regards,
Dan Jansen
Mountain Village Mayor

March Mayor’s Minute

Mayor's Minute

Words by Dan Jansen / Mayor's Minute

Dear neighbors,

It certainly feels like spring is here with warmer weather and soft spring corn skiing. We’ll see if the snow storms return as they often do in March.

Until then, your Town Council and staff have been quite busy. Last month we received an update from the Telluride Airport and the potential for commercial service returning. The short answer is that it is complex, and while progress is being made, the FAA moves very slowly. The Council, with me being recused, sponsored some Telluride Venture Accelerator events. Our Town Hall subarea planning moved ahead with the Town, TMVOA and TSG working together. We had an important worksession discussion about the options to improve cell service in Mountain Village. Kate Jones shared an update on Telluride Arts and how Mountain Village can be brought more into those creative activities. We also brainstormed about the various incentive programs we have created for our residents and business, ranging from energy efficiency to noxious weed control to forest health. A specific proposal will be coming to Council at its Wednesday meeting. In addition to routine land use matters and staff updates, we also passed on a second reading some ordinances about signage related to our existing weapons laws and regulations limiting off-highway vehicles in town.

This week our Town Council continues the momentum on many of these issues and adds a few more topics for consideration. We will have representatives from San Miguel Power to discuss the recent serious power outage in the area and actions that are being taken to build better redundancy. We will have a deep dive into fire risk in our region and town with three agenda items: first, the West Region Wildfire Council will share its recently completed parcel level fire risk assessment; next, our forest manager will update us on our defensible space regulations; and finally, our environmental service team will propose some incentive programs to encourage our property owners to create safe defensible spaces around their homes and businesses. We will also consider a draft Regional Transportation Authority (RTA) intergovernmental agreement, which has been the result of the three local governments working together closely over the last several years to better coordinate and improve inter-city transportation in our region. We also will review a potential new process to grant Town of Mountain Village funds, working in partnership with the Telluride Foundation. Finally, in addition to routine updates and land use matters, we will have a worksession discussing the process for engaging all stakeholders in a gondola impact study.

As always, we would love to hear your comments or have you join our meeting this Wednesday. (Note: this is not our regular day or time, so please remember that we will start at 2 p.m. Wednesday, March 16.)

Warm Regards,
Dan Jansen
Mountain Village Mayor

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