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Posted on: May 4, 2022

Blog: CITY COUNCIL WORK SESSION: Monday, May 2

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Montrose, CO — City Councilors met for a work session Monday morning, May 2, to discuss street maintenance work for 2022, a sales tax exemption on plastic bag fees, and a proposed new Planning Commission public notice sign. 

Councilors Barbara Bynum, Doug Glaspell, Dave Frank, David Reed, and Ed Ulibarri met in City Council Chambers along with city staff. 

The following is a summary of the primary topics discussed during the meeting. 

Watch the meeting here.

MOVING MONTROSE FORWARD 2022 CONTRACTED STREET MAINTENANCE PROJECT

City Councilors heard a presentation regarding the proposed award of a construction contract to Mountain Valley Contracting in the amount of $1,430,000 for the completion of the Moving Montrose Forward 2022 Contracted Street Maintenance Project. 

Starting in 2018, the City of Montrose developed the Moving Montrose Forward (MoveMo) initiative, which placed a renewed focus on street maintenance, reducing traffic congestion, and improving pedestrian and vehicular mobility throughout the community. As part of this effort, each year the city hires contractors to perform some of the larger-scale and specialized street maintenance construction. This contracted street maintenance work is in addition to typical routine maintenance activities performed by the city’s Public Works Department.

The city’s Street Maintenance and Capital Plan is available on the city’s MoveMo webpage and at https://tinyurl.com/COMStreetPlan. The plan identifies funding needs to sustainably maintain an acceptable pavement condition throughout the city and how available funds should be allocated between the various types of maintenance activities (e.g., surface treatments, mill, and overlays, rebuilds of failed roadways, etc).

The city budgeted $3.26M for this year’s MoveMo contracted street maintenance efforts. Approximately 50% of this street maintenance work is focused on surface treatments consisting of slurry and cape seals. A contract for that work was awarded on April 19, 2022. 

City Civil Engineer Ryan Cushenam said areas to receive asphalt overlays or street rebuilds under this contract are shown on a map that was included in the council’s meeting packet. He noted that the following two streets were planned to be included in this year’s work but have since been removed from the project’s scope of work for reasons summarized below:

  • Overlay of Bridges Drive and East Oak Grove East of Bear Lake Drive. These reaches were to receive an asphalt overlay to add structure to the roadway similar to what was done on Pavilion Drive in 2019. The primary drivers for the overlay were insufficient pavement thickness in the original roadway, damage due to overwatering of decorative medians, and preparation of this reach for the additional traffic it will carry once the extension of East Oak Grove between Bridges Drive and 6700 Road is completed. This element of work is expected to cost approximately $650k and will be deferred to a future MoveMo street maintenance project due to limitations in this year’s budget.
  • Rebuild of South 3rd Street from Townsend to Cascade Avenues. The 2022 MoveMo budget included $400k for the rebuild of this reach of South 3rd running between the Montrose Library and CMU’s Cascade Hall. Since originally establishing this budget, there have been new developments in the area such as the city’s purchase of 402 South 2nd, the likely expansion of CMU’s quad, and a potential remodel/update of Cascade Hall by CMU. To ensure the project on South 3rd is complementary to these efforts, city staff recommended that the improvements and funding for this reach of roadway be deferred to allow the city time to work with CMU, the public, and other stakeholder groups on a comprehensive design solution for the area. A concept drawing for a potential quad expansion into South 3 rd Street was included in the meeting packet to help give a feel for some of the ideas that have been brainstormed at this stage. This concept was prepared by Assistant Public Works Manager Jackie Bubenik.

The city received three bids for the 2022 Contracted Street Maintenance Project: 

  • Mountain Valley Contracting Grand Junction: $1,513,434.75 
  • United Companies Montrose: $1,839,666.62 
  • Skip Huston Construction Montrose: $1,894,072.41

With the exception of work near Pomona Elementary School, which will be completed before school returns to session in the fall, the project will start mid-summer and extend through the end of October. The nature of the project will require that roadways be closed to through traffic during the work. Access to local businesses and residences will still be available during these closures.

SALES TAX EXEMPTION ON PLASTIC BAGS FEE

City Councilors were presented with a proposal to add the “carryout bag fee”, to be implemented by the State of Colorado through HB21-1162, to the list of sales tax exemptions.

Assistant City Attorney Chris Dowsey said the state legislation imposes a ban on the use of plastic bags for certain stores while placing a fee on single-use, non-reusable bags, both paper and plastic, from the stores affected by the bill. Polystyrene food containers will be banned as well. The onus is on the municipalities to implement, enforce, and administer these fees.

Beginning January 1, 2023, there will be a minimum of a ten-cent fee per bag provided to customers at the affected stores, with the option for each municipality to assess a higher fee. The fee will be split between the business charging and collecting the fee (40%) and the municipality (60%).

Stores subject to charging this fee must specify, on the customer’s receipt, the number of bags provided as part of a transaction. Stores must also conspicuously display a sign alerting customers about the carryout bag fee. Stores are prohibited from refunding any portion of the money collected for the carryout bag fee..

The Bill applies to any establishment that provides carryout bags provided to customers, including restaurants, grocery stores, dry cleaners, etc. There is an exemption for a “small store,” defined as “a store that operates solely in Colorado, has three or fewer locations in the state, and is not part of a franchise, corporation, or partnership that has physical locations outside of Colorado.” Additionally, consumers who use federal or state food assistance are not subject to the ten-cent fee.

Important dates: 

  • January 1, 2023: fee goes into effect. 
  • January 1, 2024: retail stores will no longer be allowed to purchase new plastic bags and may only use what they have in inventory for the next six months. Polystyrene food containers may no longer be purchased and businesses may only use what they have in inventory until depleted. 
  • June 1, 2024: retail stores may no longer use plastic bags. Restaurants may continue using plastic bags after this date. 
  • April 1, 2024: remittance begins on a quarterly basis. 
  • July 1, 2024: local governments may enact, implement, or enforce any ordinance, resolution, or rule provision that is as, or more, stringent than the state law.

PROPOSED NEW PLANNING COMMISSION PUBLIC NOTICE SIGN

City Councilors were presented with a proposal to replace the public notice signs used by the Planning Commission. 

Deputy City Manager Ann Morgenthaler said city staff proposes a new Planning Commission public hearing notice sign design for the City Council’s consideration and feedback. 

Public notice signs are placed at sites that are the subject of a development application that requires a public hearing. The goal of the signs is to alert the public that a hearing will be held, provide basic information about the hearing, and direct the public to more complete information about the application, whether that is obtained by contacting planning staff or going to the city’s website.

Current Sign 

The Planning Division currently uses a one-sided, 24” x 18” public notice sign.

Proposed Sign 

The Planning Division worked with the city marketing team to design an improved public notice sign that includes the following qualities and improvements:

  • Larger size – 36” x 24” 
  • Larger font with a simplified and easier-to-read format 
  • Colors that are easily identified as City of Montrose colors 
  • Double-sided so the sign can be placed perpendicular to the road and easily seen by traffic traveling in either direction in front of a property 
  • A QR Code with a direct link to the Planning Division webpage 
  • Date, time, and project type placed on the sign in a weather-resistant manner 
  • Two signs that are not mounted on frames so that they can be placed in windows when necessary 
  • Signs mounted on real estate frames that will fit in city vehicles and can be installed by one person. 

 •••

All City Council meetings are recorded and made available online via the city’s website and cable channels 191 for Charter subscribers and 970 for Elevate subscribers. Replays of council meetings are also broadcast at 6 p.m. on the same channels on days that the council is not in session. 

In addition, each regular meeting is archived on the City of Montrose’s YouTube channel

Residents can watch all regular City Council meetings and work sessions live and on-demand through the city’s Public Meetings Portal.

 For more city news visit CityOfMontrose.org.


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