Barb Peterson, Paonia town clerk, announced at the beginning of the town council meeting on Feb. 11 that candidate packets are now available at town hall. They are due back on Feb. 28.
She said they hope to have an informational meeting for candidates on March 4. March 7 is the last day to withdraw a nomination.
During the mayor's report, Neal Schwieterman announced that trustee Larry Wissbeck had resigned as of Feb. 1 due to health reasons. A replacement will not be appointed since Wissbeck's term is up anyway. A new trustee will be elected on April 1. One candidate who is running for trustee is attorney Charles Stewart.
Mayor Schwieterman said Wissbeck will still be on the Paonia Planning and Zoning Commission and the Upper North Fork Area Planning Committee.
"Larry was truly a pleasure to work with on the council," the mayor said.
The first item on the agenda was an announcement concerning Paradise Theatre. Elaine Brett said she wanted to make the council aware of a campaign on behalf of the Paradise Theatre. "It's a multi-step process," Brett said. "The first step has been the launch of a crowdfunding campaign." This is with Kickstarter.com. "After a week and a day, the campaign has raised over $15,000 and 105 backers have signed up to support the Paradise Theatre and the digital conversion." The goal is $43,000.
"The response has just been absolutely amazing from our community in the North Fork Valley as well as outside the community. This approach of the Kickstarter crowdfunding ... instead of counting on a few individuals to fund things in the town, it has really spread it out. We've gotten responses from all over the country. People who have either been here or who have some affiliation [have donated]," Brett said.
If you would like to check out the crowdfunding site go online to www.kickstarter.com and search for The Paradise Theatre.
The parks maintenance contract had four bidders. The year-round contract was awarded to Michael Altenhofen. His bid was higher than some that were submitted, but his bid was still under budget. He has worked previously for the town and has the equipment necessary to do the job. The contract is for $39,500.
Mayor Neal Schwieterman explained that the Beaver Dam water rights were an issue former town attorney Jim Briscoe was finishing. Briscoe suggested the town use water attorney Aaron Clay for the application. The state had requested that the right be cleaned up. Schwieterman said the ditch right had never been changed to a municipal right. The water is not used for irrigation but for domestic use. The application is to change the use of the water right. The council approved the application.
Trustee Sarah Sauter recused herself from the council to speak on behalf of the Western Slope Conservation Center concerning the Paonia River Park. The Conservation Center and the Town of Paonia jointly own the river park. The town owns 4 or 5 acres and The Conservation Center owns 19 acres. $750,000 has been invested in the river park.
She asked the town to partner with the center on a grant application to the Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO) Trust Fund. The $45,000 mini grant would be for park enhancements. This would include installing irrigation infrastructure to establish water-efficient landscaping. The town would have no financial contribution. Per GOCO regulations, the town would be the entity used for the application. The Conservation Center is not eligible for the funding. It has to be the town. The two have worked successfully on a number of projects at the river park.
The public works department would contribute some in-kind work for earth moving or installing the irrigation system. Sauter did not have a completed plan for the landscaping. She was asking the town for permission to write the grant and proceed forward.
Town attorney David Marek approved the language of the resolution. After some questions from the public concerning the plan for the park, Marek explained, "This particular grant is for money to provide some improvements for irrigation and landscaping on the portion that is already owned by the town. So, there is no commitment to do anything on property beyond what the town already owns. The town applies for the grant. [The Conservation Center] is going to administer the grant. The improvements will all be on town property. Anything beyond that for further development for the other part of the river park is not really on the table tonight."
The resolution was unanimously approved.
Police Chief Scott Leon said the department had received six applications for the position vacated by officer Nick Rogers. Two applications were removed because the applicants did not live within town limits. Another applicant could not attend the testing.
The three remaining applicants completed the first phase of testing which includes a written exam, oral board interviews and an interview with the mayor and police chief. Those on the oral board included one member of the public safety committee, one member of the personnel committee, two officials from the District Attorney's Office, one business owner/citizen from the Town of Paonia and Sergeant Shawn Sanchez of the Paonia Police. Complete background checks including any criminal records will be researched. Chief Leon will review all the tests and meet as needed with the oral board members.blog comments powered by Disqus