Montrose, CO — City Councilors met for a work session Monday morning, July 17, to meet several new city employees, discuss several city projects and proposed ordinances, and hear a 2A report and second-quarter crime statistics.
Mayor Barbara Bynum and Councilors Doug Glaspell, David Reed, and Ed Ulibarri met in the City Council Chambers at the Elks Civic Building along with city staff. Councilor Dave Frank was absent.
The following is a summary of the primary topics discussed during the meeting.
Watch the meeting here.
INTRODUCTION OF NEW CITY EMPLOYEES
Paul Eller, Police Department, Emergency Manager
Travis Triesch, Public Works, Street Cleaning Operator
Tina Sullivan, Police Department, Civilian Report Taking Technician
Charlie Hunt, Police Department, Civilian Report Taking Technician
Brayden Reeder, Public Works, Facilities Maintenance Foreman
Nathan Hughes, Pavilion Events Technician
VICTIM ASSISTANCE LAW ENFORCEMENT (VALE) GRANT APPLICATION
City Councilors heard a proposal for the Montrose Police Department to file for a Victim Assistance Law Enforcement (VALE) grant through the 7th Judicial District Victims Assistance Board.
Each year the department files for a grant to fund one-half of the salary of the department's victim advocate. This year the department will file for a grant totaling $55,150, to cover a portion of both the current and new victim advocates’ salary.
Montrose Police Chief Blaine Hall said the department’s victim advocates, Chantelle Bainbridge and Amy Wellington, are invaluable professionals trained to support local victims of crime. Hall said that, with the addition of a new advocate, the department now provides victim services seven days a week.
Hall said advocates offer victims information, emotional support, help in finding resources and filling out paperwork, and sometimes accompany them in court.
RESOLUTION RESCINDING PUBLIC HEALTH EMERGENCY
City Councilors were presented with a resolution officially ending the City of Montrose’s COVID pandemic response.
Paul Eller, the city’s emergency manager said the city officially declared an emergency on March 17, 2020, for the COVID-19 pandemic.
The resolution states, “The City of Montrose, Colorado, Declaration of Public Health Emergency dated March 2020 is hereby rescinded due to the conclusion of the public health emergency occasioned by the COVID-19 viral pandemic.”
Eller said the resolution rescinding the disaster declaration, will become valid upon the City Council’s approval of the resolution.
DISPOSAL/SALE OF POLICE RADIOS
City Councilors were presented with a proposal to sell used Police Department radios that have already been replaced with new radios.
Police Chief Blaine Hall said the Olathe Police Department has requested new radios and the Montrose Police Department is happy to aid a local agency.
If approved by the council, the city will disposal/sale of six police radios to the Olathe Police Department for a total amount of $600.
ELDERADO FINANCIAL - ABATEMENT ASSISTANCE REQUEST
City Councilors were presented with a proposal to assist a local financial company with renovations to their facility.
Owner Jim Elder told councilors that Elderado Financial will be relocating to a new building on Townsend Avenue and the property is undergoing necessary renovation in preparation for the move. Removal of old gas remediation wells and asbestos abatement are needed. There are also dilapidated buildings at 1030 and 1048 S. Townsend Ave that will be demolished during this process and there is a tremendous amount of debris and rubbish that will be removed from the property. A second story is being built to accommodate approximately 3,000 sq ft of office rental space.
The exterior of the building will include improved landscaping and curb appeal as well as 25 parking spaces available for use.
Reason for Request
As its business grew, Eldorado Financial started looking for alternatives for office space. After two years of extensive research on numerous properties, it decided the property next door to its existing office would help solve problems with a lack of office space and parking. During this process, inflation greatly affected the cost of either purchasing or building a new office space. The business is asking for assistance to remove asbestos, demolish dilapidated structures, complete sidewalks, and install landscaping.
The suggested amount of $93,839 represents the asbestos abatement cost which is about 3% of the estimated total project cost of $2,000,000.
ASSIGNMENT OF PRIVATE ACTIVITY BOND ALLOCATION TO COLORADO HOUSING AND FINANCE AUTHORITY
City Councilors were presented with a proposal to assign the city’s portion of Private Activity Bonds (PAB) to the Colorado Housing and Finance Authority (CHFA).
Christopher Ottinger, Community Development Specialist for the City of Montrose said for the past five years, the City of Montrose has assigned its PAB allocation to CHFA, who in turn puts it to use in our community. Ottinger said staff is asking the City Council to again consider assigning this year’s PAB allocation to CHFA.
Each year the IRS allocates a per capita bonding authority for housing to each state, also known as PAB Volume Capacity or “Cap”. Colorado allocates this authority to statewide agencies and local governments. In 2022, the allocation for the City of Montrose was $1,125,667. In 2023, the allocation for the City of Montrose is $1,245,218.
The City of Montrose has not desired to issue bonds directly, as there is risk and administrative burden in doing so. Allocating the PAB directly to CHFA allows our community to benefit from the PAB allocation without the city directly issuing bonds. For example, in 2020 CHFA worked with the City of Montrose to use the PAB allocation to support Steele Properties, LLC’s rehabilitation of San Juan Apartments, which serves seniors (62+ years old), Section 8, and residents with disabilities. In 2021, CHFA funded 20 loans in their single-family tax-exempt homeownership program, First Step, for a total of $5.3 million in the City of Montrose. In 2022, CHFA funded 17 loans, totaling $4.5 million, at a median income of $70,666 for a median loan amount of $268,492.
City staff recommends that City Council again consider assigning the city’s PAB allocation to CHFA, and request that CHFA use the PAB to support first-time home ownership investment, a multifamily affordable housing project, and/or CHFA’s First Step. If the City Council allocates PAB to CHFA, CHFA will ensure that the funding is used within the City of Montrose to benefit the community.
SNOW AND ICE REMOVAL ORDINANCE 9-4-1
City Councilors were presented with a proposal to change the city's snow removal and ice policy located in Section 9-4-1 of the city’s Municipal Code.
Public Works Manager Jim Scheid said the city perform snow and ice removal on more than 300 lane miles of public roadways. Effective snow and ice control is necessary to maintain routine travel and the provision of emergency services. Public Works personnel provide such control in a safe and cost-effective manner, keeping in mind safety, budget, personnel, and environmental concerns. Depending on the severity of the storm and conditions, Public Works employees and equipment and/or private contractors may be required to remove snow and ice.
The snowplowing and ice control policy is intended to keep the city streets passable and in reasonably safe conditions during adverse weather events.
Staff is recommending the following changes/additions to Section 9-4-1. These changes will help to keep the roadways and storm drain system clear of snow and ice during and after snow events. This ordinance change aligns with Colorado State Statue 43-5-301 regarding the depositing of snow in the roadway.
CERISE PARK STORAGE BUILDING EXPENSE AUTHORIZATION
City Councilors were presented with a proposal to construct a storage building in Cerise Park near the Montrose Rotary Amphitheater in the amount of $183,575, including a contract with Stryker and Company for the design and construction.
Public Works Manager Jim Scheid said the usage of Cerise Park for events has increased significantly following the completion of the Montrose Rotary Amphitheater in 2021, which has created the need for a building to store support materials such as modular fencing panels, portable light towers, Police Department patrol equipment, and non-profit event organizers’ accessories. City staff have selected a location near the amphitheater that will be accessible for event support but also out of the way of the busy and sometimes congested support area. The location has a minimal environmental impact and doesn’t disrupt other users of the park such as the disc golf course that is nearby.
The city issued an RFP for design-build proposals for a storage building and received one proposal from Stryker and Company. The proposal was complete and offered several ideas on how to achieve the building’s purpose in the most cost-effective way. The proposed pricing is within the expected price range. The contract with Stryker would be a not-to-exceed amount of $141,565 which would include the design and construction of the building and electrical service. The owner’s expenses include materials for the access road, fiber service, cameras/network, security system, and an owner’s contingency at 7%.
This is a multi-year project due to the lead time for the building materials. If the recommendation is awarded, the materials will be ordered in August 2023, but the actual construction and completion will be in the spring of 2024.
AUTHORIZATION OF DEED OF EASEMENT ON CITY PROPERTY
City Councilors were presented with a proposal to grant Clearnetworx a utility easement along the southernmost property line of the Black Canyon Golf Course for a fiber mainline to supply the Woods Crossing Subdivision.
Public Works Manager Jim Scheid said Clearnetworx has a conduit transmission box located just inside the golf course property next to the roundabout. The proposed 15’ easement would allow for fiber to be bored in from the transmission box to the next available utility pole approximately 150 feet away.
The easement is outside the bounds of play on hole 2 and would not affect golf course operations. Deeply Digital, LLC, the installation contractor working for Clearnetworx, has worked with city staff to accommodate business hours and strategies for minimizing impact to the surrounding area. Work will be performed under the purview of an excavation permit issued and approved by the Public Works Streets Division
FUEL AND OIL CONTRACT AWARD RECOMMENDATION
City Councilors were presented with a proposed contract award to Parish Oil to supply the city with bulk fuel and oil.
Public Works Manager Jim Scheid said the City of Montrose owns, operates, and maintains a fleet of over 300 vehicles and equipment. It also owns and operates a fuel station for the fleet. The city consumes about 90,000 gallons of fuel and about 2,700 gallons of oil per year.
The city issued a request for proposals to renew the contract for the supply of bulk fuels and oils for city operations. Scheid said two proposals were received but only one proposal was complete. The complete bid received was from Parish Oil, which is the vendor that the city is currently using.
FLASHING CROSSWALK SIGNAGE EXPENSE AUTHORIZATION
City Councilors were presented with a proposal to purchase solar-powered flashing crosswalk equipment totaling $61,100.
City Engineer Scott Murphy said the city has been working over the past several years to improve pedestrian safety and driver compliance at crosswalks throughout town. As part of this effort, the city budgeted to add solar-powered, flashing, pushbutton-activated crosswalks at the following intersections:
1. Main & Junction
2. East Oak Grove & Rio Grande at the recreation trail crossing
3. Chipeta Road at the recreation trail crossing near the Ute Museum
4. Colorado Avenue & Rio Grande (replacement)
It should be noted that these updated beacons are being used in lieu of the style used previously on Main Street that included flashing LEDs mounted around the perimeter of the crosswalk sign. Although more expensive, this updated style has been shown to better grab drivers’ attention and increase compliance.
The proposed flashing crosswalk signage would be purchased from Traffic Signal Controls, Inc. out of Longmont, Colorado. After researching available styles and reaching out to several vendors, the style provided by Traffic Signal Controls was the only one that met the city’s needs for the project.
Flashing crosswalks are also being installed as part of the 6700 Extension Project and North 6th sidewalk projects; however, these have been, or will be, approved under separate expense authorizations.
The 2023 budget included $80,000 in the Capital Improvement Fund for the purchase and installation of these signs, which leaves approximately $19,000 remaining within the budget for installation work, if needed. The city intends to perform the installation using in-house crews but may utilize on-call concrete support to construct their foundations if necessary due to limitations in crew availability.
STREET CLOSURES WITH ALCOHOL PERMITS FOR FUNC FEST AND MONTE DE ROSAS FIESTA
City Councilors were presented with the option to approve special event permits for a pair of upcoming community events. City Clerk Lisa DelPiccolo said the council is required to approve special events permits as they pertain to the selling of alcohol.
The annual FUNC Fest event, hosted by the City of Montrose, will be held on August 12-13 at the Montrose Watersports Park and in Riverbottom Park. As in previous years, Apollo Road will be closed during the event. Black Canyon Boys and Girls Club has applied for an alcohol permit for this event.
Monte De Rosas Fiesta
The Monte De Rosas Fiesta will be held in LaRaza Park and the immediate area on Saturday, August 19. N. Sixth Street, N. Seventh Street, Ute Avenue, and Selig Avenue
adjacent to LaRaza Park will be closed as part of this event. MADA is hosting this event and is the applicant for the alcohol permit. The premises for both events have been posted in compliance with the state statute.
Montrose Police Chief Blaine Hall delivered a 2A report card and a second-quarter crime statistics report.
Hall said the department added three new hires and had one departure. The department hired a second victim advocate, an emergency manager, Paul Eller, and added another school resource officer, SRO, to have a total of four SROs in local schools.
Hall said the department will be adding two new K-9s named Floki and Kilo to assist officers in a number of roles.
Hall then delivered a second-quarter crime report to the council.
“In general we continue to see some drop in crime rates, except in the area of sexual assaults,” Hall said.
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.