Paul Oupada Steps Down from Mountain Village Town Council


Words by Bill Kight / Government

Mountain Village Town Council member Paul Oupadia announced his resignation from the council on Thursday, August 31 effective immediately.

Paul Oupadia, along with Patrick Berry and Jack Gilbride was elected to Mountain Village Town Council on June 27 to serve four-year terms. They joined current council members Dan Jansen, Laila Benitez, Dan Caton and Bruce MacIntire who were not up for re-election. Following the election, Laila Benitez was elected Mayor of Mountain Village, and Dan Caton was elected Mayor Pro Tem serving two-year terms.

“I have spoken with Paul, and he regretfully has resigned from his town council position due to unforeseen family circumstances. Due to these conditions, he and his wife will be leaving the area,” stated Mountain Village Mayor Laila Benitez.

The Town of Mountain Village Home Rule Charter dictates that within forty-five days after a vacancy occurs in the office of Town Councilor, the remaining members of the Town Council shall, by majority vote, appoint a successor to fill such vacancy, provided no more than three vacancies are to be filled at one time. The appointed Town Councilor shall then serve out the unexpired terms of their predecessor.

Town Council will appoint one new council member by a majority vote at its next regular meeting to be held on September 21.

To qualify one must be a registered elector who has maintained legal residency with the town for at least 120 days immediately preceding the appointment. A Letter of Intent and Candidate Biographical Information Sheet must be submitted via email by 5 p.m. on September 19 to the Clerk’s Office.

For more information, please contact Jackie Kennefick, Director of Administration/Town Clerk by email.


Telluride Ski & Golf Infrastructure Improvement Project Implements Temporary Telluride Trail Detour

Telluride Trail

Words by Bill Kight / Recreation

Telluride Ski & Golf Resort (TSG) continues to invest in its infrastructure by enhancing winter snowmaking capabilities. TSG has begun their third phase of work on the Oak Street pump house project located at the Oak Street Plaza in Telluride along the Telluride Trail. This pump house station is where TSG draws the water to push up to its distribution system for winter snowmaking.

Due to the proximity of the construction project, Telluride Ski & Golf Resort will implement a hiking trail closure and detour for the Telluride Trail effective immediately. The Oak Street Plaza access to the Telluride Trail is now closed to all recreational traffic until further notice. Public ingress and egress of the trail can be accessed from Telluride at the base of Coonskin Lift (Chair 7) or from the Camel’s Garden Trail beginning at the Bear Creek Preserve Trailhead at the end of Pine Street and from the egress of the Telluride Trail from Mountain Village.

“The trail detour is necessary to provide safe access around the project, and the town asks to please follow the designated closure and detour signs posted by the ski area while the detour is in place,” explained Marketing and Business Development Director Bill Kight.

For questions regarding this temporary closure please contact Telluride Ski & Golf Resort Mountain Operations Erin Kress by (970) 728-7522 or email. To learn more about Mountain Village’s trails, visit

August Mayor’s Minute

Mayors Minute

Words by Laila Benitez / Mayor's Minute

Hello neighbors

Last month’s Town Council meeting was the first meeting following the June 27 election and we started the meeting by swearing in newly elected Town Council Members Patrick Berry, Jack Gilbride, and Paul Oupadia. Council then elected me, Laila Benitez, as Mayor and Dan Caton as Mayor Pro Tem.

I look forward to serving our community in this new role and to working closely with my fellow council members.  I would also like to again thank Dan Jansen for his four plus years of service as mayor.

July 20 Meeting Highlights

  • Town Council appointed representatives to various boards, committees, and commissions, such as the Finance and Budget Committee, The Historical Telluride Museum, and the San Miguel Authority for Regional Transportation.
  • EcoAction Partners and San Miguel Regional Housing Authority both gave their annual reports.
  • We heard an introductory presentation from the Colorado Mountain College (CMC) Community Committee. CMC is considering introducing college courses toward bachelor’s and associates degrees, certificate programs, and occupational training to San Miguel County. They requested appointment of a Town Council representative to participate in a future “needs assessment”.
  • Century Link provided an update on their efforts to increase redundancy in the region. Unfortunately, none of the projects they described will provide redundancy for Mountain Village or help us to avoid future outages. Council will continue to look for alternative solutions but so far reasonable and cost-effective solutions have been elusive.
  • Finance presented and Council accepted the 2016 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report and the 2016 Independent Auditor’s Report.

If you would like more specifics about any of these topics, you can review minutes from the meeting.

August 17 Agenda Highlights

  • We will receive an update on the Crown Castle Macro Tower Project near the top of Lift 7 and recent roadblocks to the project’s completion. The aim of the tower is to expand phone coverage and data capacity for wireless providers/customers, to accommodate emergency broadcast systems, and to allow for future communication providers.
  • Telluride Regional Airport Authority will present their biannual report.
  • We will make appointments to the following committees and projects:
  • Discussion of a Comprehensive Plan Amendment for Lot 30 in the Village Center Subarea.
  • The San Miguel Authority for Regional Transportation will be discussing the terms of an intergovernmental agreement to contract and fund the operation of the town’s interjurisdictional transportation.
  • And finally, we will consider adoption of bylaws for the formation of the Green Team Committee. This board of Town Council members, town employees, residents, and local partners would advise Town Council on local environmental issues, information, and resources.

A full agenda has been posted on our website; we welcome your input by any means you are comfortable with and hope to see you at the meeting.

Warm regards,

Laila Benitez
Mountain Village Mayor


Mountain Village Police Department Host National Night Out and Ice Cream Social August 1

National Night Out

Words by Bill Kight / Community, Emergency Preparedness

Bringing together community members and emergency responders, the Mountain Village Police Department is excited to announce the sixth annual National Night Out Tuesday, August 1. From 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., the community is invited to join their neighbors, police, and fire department teams at the Mountain Village’s Village Court Apartments (VCA) for a free ice cream social and tours of police cars, fire trucks and ambulance. Free gun safety locks will be available, and the Telluride Fire District will offer free blood pressure readings. Also, this year’s festivities will include free hot dogs, swag, karaoke, games, a donut eating contest and much more!

Millions of neighbors take part in National Night Out across thousands of communities from all fifty states, U.S. territories, Canadian cities, and military bases worldwide on the first Tuesday in August. National Night Out is an annual community-building campaign that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make our communities safer, more caring places to live. National Night Out enhances the relationship between neighbors and law enforcement while bringing back a real sense of community. Furthermore, it provides an excellent opportunity to bring police and neighbors together under positive circumstances.

“Once again, we are excited to bring together our neighbors and residents to get to know one another and the first responders who serve them in the community,” said Mountain Village Police Chief Chris Broady. “A huge thanks goes to the Village Court Apartment staff for taking the lead in organizing this year’s event.”

For more event information, contact Cecilia Curry at the Village Court Apartments at (970) 369-8233.

Escrito por –

Reuniendo los miembros de la comunidad y respondedores de emergencia, el departamento de policía de Mountain Village esta entusiasmado de anunciar la sexta Noche Nacional anual el martes, 1 de agosto. A las 5 de la tarde hasta las 8 de la noche, la comunidad está invitada a acompañar a sus vecinos, policías y el equipo de bomberos en Mountain Village Court (VCA) para helados gratis, perros calientes, y excursiones de los coches de policía, camiones de bomberos y ambulancias. Las cerraduras de seguridad del arma libres estarán disponibles, y el Distrito de Fuego de Telluride ofrecerá lecturas gratis de presión sanguínea. ¡Además, las festividades de este año incluirán gratis cosas, perros calientes, karaoke, juegos, un concurso de comer donuts y mucho más!

Millones de vecinos participan en la Noche Nacional a través de miles de comunidades en todos los 50 estados, territorios de Los Estas Unidos, ciudades canadienses y bases militares por todo el mundo el primer martes del mes de agosto. La Noche Nacional es una campaña anual que construye esfuerzo comunitario que promueve las asociaciones de la comunidad policial y la camaradería del vecindario para hacer nuestras comunidades más seguras y lugares más cariñosos para vivir. La Noche Nacional mejora la relación entre los vecinos y el cumplimiento de la ley, mientras que trae de vuelta un verdadero sentido de la comunidad. Además, proporciona una excelente oportunidad para reunir a la policía y a los vecinos en circunstancias positivas.

“Una vez más, estamos entusiasmados de reunir a nuestros vecinos y residentes para conocernos unos a otros y a los primeros respondedores que les sirven en la comunidad,” dijo el jefe de policía de Mountain Village Chris Broady. “Un enorme agradecimiento al equipo de Village Court Apartment (VCA) por haber tomado la iniciativa de organizar el evento de este año.”

Para más información sobre el evento, póngase en contacto con Cecilia Curry en el Village Court Apartment at  (970) 369-8233.

Town Council Elects Laila Benitez as Mayor and Dan Caton as Mayor Pro Tem; Newly Elected Town Council Members Berry, Oupadia, and Gilbride Sworn-In

Town Council

Words by Bill Kight / Election, Government

Newly elected council members Patrick Berry, Paul Oupadia, and Jack Gilbride, were officially sworn in as members of the Mountain Village Town Council. Each new member stood before the community and repeated the oath, promising to faithfully carry out the responsibilities of the office. The newly elected Council members will serve four-year terms and will join current council members Dan Jansen, Laila Benitez, Dan Caton and Bruce MacIntire.

Following the Swearing-In Ceremony was the election of the Mayor and Mayor Pro Tem positions. The Town of Mountain Village Home Rule Charter dictates the positions to be elected amongst the Council members by a majority vote at its first organizational meeting held after the election. According to the Charter, the new Mayor presides at Council meetings and is recognized as the head of the Town government for all ceremonial, dignitary and legal purposes. In the absence or of the Mayor, the Mayor Pro Tem presides at Council meetings and takes over the powers and duties of the Mayor.

By a 5-2 vote, Laila Benitez was elected Mayor of Mountain Village and Dan Caton was elected Mayor Pro Tem. Benitez has been on the Council since June 2015 and currently serves as the chair of the San Miguel Authority for Regional Transportation (SMART), as well as a member of the Community Grant Committee and the Transportation & Parking Committee.

Caton has been on the Council since June 2015 and currently serves on the Budget & Finance Committee, the Gondola Committee and the SMART Board.

“Congratulations to the new Mayor, Laila Benitez and the new Mayor Pro Tem, Dan Caton. We extend a huge thanks to Dan Jansen for his years of service as Mayor and his continued service on Council. We are excited to begin work with the new and returning Council and look forward to the opportunity to continue serving the Mountain Village community,” said Mountain Village Town Manager Kim Montgomery.

In Mountain Village, the mayor serves a two-year term with the council’s approval. The mayor has a number of responsibilities, including overseeing the town’s finances and budget, enforcing town contracts and many other responsibilities with the town government.

For more information, please contact Jackie Kennefick, Director of Administration/Town Clerk at email.

July Mayor’s Minute

Mayor's Minute

Words by Dan Jansen / Mayor's Minute

Greetings neighbors,

I hope you are enjoying our summer weather and the arrival of monsoon season. Your town government has been busy at work with a few highlights being:

June 20 Meeting Highlights

1 > Our friends from Telluride Town Council joined us for a joint session to discuss a long range master plan for upgrading and expanding the jointly owned wastewater treatment plant. While not a glamorous subject, this project discussion is necessary given new EPA standards and the growing demand for our region. This project will be costly and could reach over $30 million in expenses and will require careful planning and regional collaboration.

2 > Town Council approved an expansion of the Mountain Village-owned Village Court Apartments (VCA) workforce housing development project by 50 units. The impacts of added density and traffic on the surrounding neighbors for this expansion were taken into consideration during the discussion. This approval marks the beginning of a potential project at VCA with more public discussions to be held as the project moves forward.

3 > The Town Hall Subarea committee held a public hearing and recommended a revised Town Hall Subarea Chapter for our 30 year Comprehensive Plan. Telluride Mountain Village Owners Association (TMVOA), Telluride Ski & Golf (TSG) and the Town of Mountain Village worked collaboratively to create a compelling vision for the Town Hall Subarea Plan. Now the committee will focus on beginning the long process of prioritizing projects and establishing funding for implementation of the plan.

4 > Council, staff and guests, took an extended lunch break to publicly thank and honor our three Town Council Members Cath Jett, Michelle Sherry, and Marty McKinley for their years of service on Town Council during their last meeting. Special thanks to Cath, Michelle, and Marty their families for working so hard for our community and for their public service.

5 > Marketing Telluride Inc (MTI) and the Colorado Flights Alliance presented our destination’s tourism and flight performance reports. Report highlights noted another record winter season and healthy growth in regional air service.

6 > Council chose not to sign the current petition supporting the Paris Climate Agreement and will instead draft our own letter supporting the goals of the pact, minus some of the critical comments included in the petition letter.

7 > Finally, we heard from Council and staff on council boards and commissions updates and staff reports as well as conducting a series of routine land use matters.

July 27 Agenda Highlights

This month Council continues its work with a full agenda.

1 > This week’s meeting represents a significant milestone in our local government. The Town of Mountain Village will swear into office our three newly elected Town Council members and put them to work almost immediately. A special welcome to Patrick Berry, Paul Oupadia, and Jack Gilbride.

2 > Next, Town Council will vote and elect the Mayor and Mayor Pro-tem to serve the next two-year term.

3 > With the new team in place, council will work together to assign roles on the various boards and commissions that members of the Council serve on.

4 > Council will hear updates from the San Miguel Regional Housing Authority, Eco-Action Partners and the potential for expanded higher education in the Telluride area.

5 > CenturyLink representatives will update our community on their plan to increase reliability and redundancy for local internet services to the town.

6 > Finally, in standard meeting procedure, Town Council will consider routine land use matters as well as reports from Council members and town staff that will round out this month’s agenda.

As always, we hope you can join us for the meeting whether in person, online or by providing your thoughts and input in advance of the meeting by email to the Clerk’s office.

Warm Regards,
Dan Jansen
Mountain Village Mayor

Mountain Village Chip Seal Project Begins Tuesday July 25 on Mountain Village and North Village Parking Lot

Chip Seal

Words by Bill Kight / Parking, Transportation

The Town of Mountain Village Public Works Department will begin chip seal road work on Mountain Village Boulevard and the North Village Center Parking lot on Tuesday, July 25 through Saturday, July 29 from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. (weather permitting). The chip seal will be applied for a three-mile stretch through the town beginning at the CO State Hwy 145 entrance along Mountain Village Boulevard to Country Club Drive.

The North Village Center Parking lot will be closed Tuesday, July 25 while chip seal work is performed. Resident parking permits will be honored at the Heritage Parking Garage during Tuesday’s construction period. Work on the North Village Center Parking lot is expected to be completed by the end of the day on Tuesday, July 25.

The traveling public can expect brief delays while traveling through the work zone. Drivers may experience lane shifts as well as traffic reduced to a single-lane, alternating intermittently in either direction, throughout the project. Motorists will be guided by flaggers and/or pilot cars. Delays of 5 to 15 minutes are possible. Motorists are advised to allow themselves a little more time to reach their destination if passing through these areas. Residents are urged to be alert when driving through the work zones. They should watch for flaggers, pilot cars, and slow down to the posted speed limits. They should increase the distance between the cars that they’re following to minimize the possibility of damage caused by loose gravel.

To learn more about our construction projects, visit To sign up to receive project information and updates in Mountain Village, please contact Bill Kight by email.

Music on the Green to Kick off Weekends in Mountain Village

Music on the Green

Words by Bill Kight / Community, Event

This summer, the Telluride Mountain Village Owners Association (TMVOA) and Beyond the Groove are pleased to present “Music on the Green”, a free concert series taking place Fridays through August 18 from 5:00 – 7:00 p.m. at Reflection Plaza, adjacent to the Madeline Hotel and Residence.

“Music on the Green is a great way to start to your weekend,” said Anton Benitez, Executive Director of TMVOA. “Meet with friends, grab a drink and a bite, and enjoy live music in Reflection Plaza.”

The “Music on the Green” line-up features a wide variety of bands and musicians that will start the weekend with a celebration of music and art amid the backdrop of the San Juan Mountains surrounding Mountain Village. The line-up for this summer includes:

  • Edison (July 14) – this Colorado-based indie rock trio features singer/guitarist Sarah Slaton, multi-instrumentalist Dustin Morris and Grammy-nominated guitarist Maxwell Hughes (formerly of The Lumineers). Despite only forming in 2014, Edison has quickly gained a large national fan base thanks to their tireless touring, high-energy live shows and supporting many national touring acts.
  • The Mostest (July 21) – featuring songwriter/guitarist Mark Ranson and virtuoso bassist Patrick Pearsall, as well as a larger collective of musicians that have rotated in and out over the last 11 years. Self-describing their sound as “Heavy Americana”, the band incorporates elements of American folk music and extemporaneous jazz, inspired by artists such as Bob Dylan, the Allman Brothers and the Grateful Dead.
  • The Harmaleighs (July 28) – The Harmaleighs honestly craft poetic, passionate, and powerful songs cut from a pastiche of indie, folk, pop and Americana. Featuring Haley Grant and Kaylee Jasperson, the duo is touring to support their latest EP, Hiraeth, sharing the inspiration received from being on the road and the trials and tribulations of longing for a home.
  • McCarthy Jazz Trio (August 4) – Playing a mix of jazz and blues, and infusing their performances with improvisation that plays to the crowd, the McCarthy Jazz Trio explores the structure of jazz classics with an ever-changing perspective. Consisting of Mike Enriquez, Chris Goplerud and Kevin McCarthy, the Trio takes audiences down a nimble and creative musical journey.
  • Beat Root Revival (August 11) – The duo of Ben Jones and Andrea Magee that make up Beat Root Revival are the first to say their style consists of a lot of different sounds. Influenced by blues, rock and roll, 60’s-style pop and traditional folk, the duo’s vocals fit perfectly together and their passion for the music is evident on-stage.
  • Joe Pug (August 18) – Austin-based Pug is comfortable pushing the limits of what he is comfortable playing, evident on his newest LP “Windfall”. Aiming to go back to basics with minimalist production, Pug has put together a collection of songs that reflect his ambitions as an artist, and reflect his contemporary influences like Josh Ritter, Ryan Adams and M.Ward.

“These free Friday shows on the reflection plaza, next to the Madeline Hotel, offer an intimate experience with top class national acts,” said Denise Mongan of Beyond the Groove Productions. “It is a chance to sit, relax and socialize while enjoying some live music performances in a quiet and small venue.”

“Music on the Green” is the latest addition to family-friendly entertainment options in Mountain Village, complementing the Wednesday night Sunset Concert Series, as well as the new Thursday/Saturday “Movies Under the Stars“, as well as regular shows at Club Red.

For up to date information on all things happening in Mountain Village, visit

Mountain Village Hires Michelle Haynes as Planning and Development Director

Michelle Haynes Open House

Words by Bill Kight / Development

Mountain Village is pleased to announce the hiring of Michelle Haynes as director of planning and development. Haynes spent the last five years as Building and Planning Director of Town of Telluride and previously served as the planner for Telluride. Haynes has a Bachelor’s degree in Art History, Criticism, and Conservation from Smith College and a Master’s degree in Public Administration from the University of Colorado. Haynes will begin work in her new role on July 17.

Outgoing Director Glen Van Nimwegen, who joined the Town of Mountain Village in 2015, recently accepted the City of Salida Community Development Director position. Van Nimwegen stepped into his new role with over 17 years of experience in planning and development. Van Nimwegen led the Town Hall Subarea Planning Committee during his residency at the Town of Mountain Village. Mountain Village Town Council approved the Town Hall Subarea Plan at the June 20 meeting.

“We are thrilled to have Michelle on board,” stated Mountain Village Town Manager Kim Montgomery. “To have Michelle in the role of Planning and Development Director is such a positive for the community with her extensive experience in the region.”

Focusing on creating strategic and tactical goals for planning and building, and implementing economic development efforts in the town are among the director’s responsibilities.

Haynes brings eight years of experience in planning and development to Mountain Village. In her previous role as building and planning director at the Town of Telluride, Haynes successfully developed a package of Land Use Code zoning incentives aimed at development within the commercial core of Telluride achieving consensus and adoption in January of 2017. Additionally, Haynes helped produce Telluride’s Climate Action Plan — a trending policy action being adopted by cities and towns across the nation and the world — as part of a master’s degree program she undertook at the University of Colorado Denver.

On July 18, the Town of Mountain Village will hold an open house to introduce Miss Haynes to staff and community members. The event is open to the public with appetizers and drinks provided from 4 to 6 p.m. at Mountain Village’s Town Hall. To RSVP for the event please contact, Sue Kunz by email.

Areas Affected By Town of Mountain Village Broadband and Cable Outage


Words by Bill Kight / Communications, Utilities

Town of Mountain Village is currently experiencing a broadband and cable outage due to a damaged fiber optic cable line on Adams Ranch Road. The outage is affecting approximately 200 modems west of the Mountain Lodge and Ski Area. The areas affected include Mountain Village Town Hall, Trails Edge, Elkstone Place, Village Court Apartments (VCA), Lower Benchmark, Larkspur Lane and Victoria Drive. The outage is expected to last through tomorrow morning, July 12 while crews replace the fiber optic line.

Mountain Village Town Hall and the Police Department phone and internet systems are affected by this outage and are currently down. Offices remain open at Town Hall and the Police Department during normal business hours from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. For a staff directory please visit:

“Crews will be working through the evening to restore service in the affected areas,” said Marketing and Business Development Director Bill Kight. “Residents can expect service to be restored by Wednesday, July 12.”

For routine public safety calls, please contact the Mountain Village Police Department dispatch center at (970) 249-9110. In cases of emergency, contact 911 and ‘call if you can, text if you must’.

For questions, please contact Marketing and Business Development Director Bill Kight at (970) 729-2179 or our broadband and cable customer service personnel at (970) 369-0555.

Real-time updates are posted on the town’s social media channels at Facebook and Twitter while crews work on mitigating the problem.

Thank you for your patience, and we’re sorry for any inconvenience this has caused.


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