Tuesday’s meeting saw all trustees in attendance besides Erica Sparhawk. The meeting began with student of the month awards, approval of the consent agenda and comments by trustees.
Next was a public hearing for an application for a new retail marijuana store called Goodflower, to be located at 1101 Village Road. With no comments from the public, the application was approved. Trustee Ben Bohmfalk encouraged the applicants to be proactive to avoid issues with fugitive odors.
Public Works Director Kevin Schorzman introduced three contracts recommended for extension. First, a five year contract with Roaring Fork Engineering, set to expire on Feb. 14, was renewed for another five years. Schorzman praised the local company’s customer service and regional insight.
Second, a three-year contract with Mountain Waste was also renewed for trash and recycling collection at town facilities. This is one of three contracts with Mountain Waste, the company also chosen in 2019 for residential curbside collection.
The third contract held by Mountain Waste, and the third contract reviewed by trustees on Tuesday, was for operation of the yard waste drop site. Dave Reindel, co-founder and chief operating officer of Evergreen ZeroWaste, stood to comment.
“I simply ask that this doesn’t get handed off for renewal, but put out to bid again,” said Reindel, listing the accomplishments of Evergreen ZeroWaste, specifically regarding waste diversion education. “Your program could be approved and potentially even cheaper.” He concluded, “If nothing else, it’s more American to have some competition out there.”
Asked about the downsides of issuing a new request for proposals (RFP) for that two-year contract, Schorzman responded that there’s an advantage to consistency, especially given the inflationary economy. With the current contract set to expire on May 1, he recommended renewing for another two years and then issuing an RFP with more time to receive responses.
In a rare moment, the board was split over how to proceed. Heather Henry, Lani Kitching and Marty Silverstein all agreed with Schorzman’s assessment. Bohmfalk, Dan Richardson and Luis Yllanes favored putting the contract back out to bid.
Without a tie-breaker, the discussion was pushed to their next regular meeting on Feb. 22.
Finally, trustees began discussing Town Center, the land surrounding the Thunder River Theatre that was donated to the town late last year. Mayor Richardson proposed hiring a contractor to compile due diligence studies and clarify for the town and public what is and is not possible on that land. Included in the assessment would be the large empty lot just east of Town Hall, across fourth street. The park at Fourth and Main, also donated to the town, would have a separate process.
The Town Center topic will next be discussed at the trustees’ work session on March 15.
Save the date! The Sopris Sun and KDNK will host a candidate forum from 6 to 8 p.m. on March 16 at Town Hall. Details to follow.
Sixteen lots surrounding the Thunder River Theatre now belong to the town, thanks to an anonymous donation of the land late last year. Courtesy graphic