Board OKs dog park, wetland protection | SkyHiNews.com

Board OKs dog park, wetland protection

Granby's future dog park moved closer to reality Tuesday night as the Granby Board of Trustees approved a lease agreement between the city and Grand County Pet Pals for the park, scheduled for development within the Shorefox property on the west side of town.

The unanimously approved lease agreement allows Grand County Pet Pals to lease several acres of the property from the city at a rate of $10 per year. Town trustees expressed excitement about the dog park, but were concerned about potential impacts of pet waste.

The board sought reassurances from Nathan Krob, legal counsel for the town, to ensure the lease agreement would include language allowing Granby to temporarily close the park, or terminate the lease, if pet waste is not properly disposed.

Several board members, including Mayor Paul Chavoustie, highlighted a recent incident in Evergreen where a large dog park was permanently closed partially because of excessive amounts of pet waste left by park users.

The land set aside for the dog park is located near the parking lot of the Granby Trails network. The future park is planned to include, among other amenities, access to one of the ponds on the property.

The expansive Shorefox property has been the focus of discussion for the Granby Board of Trustees for months. In addition to approving land for a dog park Tuesday, the board also approved an environmental protection contract for the property.

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The contract, costing $4,000, covers costs associated with a wetlands mitigation project initiated by the property's previous owners.

"Basically if you want to build in a wetland area you have to replace that wetland," explained Mayor Chavoustie during the meeting. "The wetlands were replaced and there is a monitoring period."

Chavoustie said the replaced wetland spans roughly four acres and is situated near the Colorado River. The monitoring program for the mitigation project lasts several years, and Chavoustie said he believed this was the final year of formal monitoring.

Rewriting town's sign code

Granby is in process of rewriting the sign codes that govern all forms of signs within the town's boundaries, prompted by a 2015 Supreme Court case. In that case, justices ruled unanimously that a sign code from Gilbert, Ariz., imposed content-based restrictions and was deemed unconstitutional.

The ruling was not directly related to Granby, though the nature of the ruling impacted sign codes throughout the nation.

According to Krob, the ruling "eviscerated all sign codes across the country."

He and the board discussed local billboards, lamppost signs, sandwich boards, banners and more, but took no formal action on the new sign code proposals, which are still being developed by Krob and his legal team.

He noted to the trustees that, for the most part, signs that have been granted permits under the previous sign code would be grandfathered in under the new sign codes. The new sign code would likely be similar to the previous sign code.

The board announced its plan to hold public comment periods on the new sign proposals in the near future.

Town gives verbal 'blessing' to move forward with school resource officer

Granby Police Chief Jim Kraker then addressed the board with a review of the school resource officer proposal he recently presented to the East Grand School Board.

During his presentation, Kraker hit upon most of the same details he covered with the school board but focused more on the impacts of a resource office than on the ability of his department to police the community.

Kraker noted that he has received verbal confirmation from Grand County Sheriff Brett Schroetlin, whose office is willing to put $10,000 into the program for the first year to help cover costs.

Any future resource office would be deputized by the Sheriff's Department to allow them to assist more with truancy issues throughout the county and to work with at-risk students and their families without any jurisdictional issues.

The board gave Kraker their verbal blessing to move ahead with discussions between the police department and the East Grand School District.

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