Granby town attorney is only one familiar with development agreements
November 25, 2008
To the Editor:
Patrick Brower, having campaigned to elect new board members and a mayor with little or no previous experience in local government, by misrepresenting the actions and intent of the incumbents (not the least of which his actions involved perpetuating myths and lies about my service to Granby and Grand County), now thinks that the town attorney isn’t needed at the board meetings.
Let’s see, Granby now has a board and mayor who didn’t attend board meetings prior to being elected, much less be involved in the negotiations with the developers that the town is obligated to honor; and Patrick wants the one person with the detailed institutional memory of the negotiations out of the room.
The town attorney was a lead negotiator in these agreements and wrote many of the agreements. No other town in Grand County has the number and complexity of these long-term documents.
It’s entirely appropriate that someone with the intimate knowledge of them be present, particularly when a former town manager (also a lead negotiator for the town) now is employed by one of those developers and is attempting to have the town renegotiate those agreements to be more favorable to his current employers, an ethical breach recognized around Colorado but, apparently, “OK” in Granby.
Prudent government oversight of development calls for professional planning and review, which costs money. Patrick conveniently ignores that by far the largest percentage of fees paid to consultants is paid for by the developers, and that the developers agreed to that review.
Previous boards agreed that “development should pay its way” and those costs should not fall on the taxpayers or the residents of Granby. Why should street improvements, parks, recreation programs, and other services of the town be delayed or sacrificed to subsidize the for-profit activities of developers? Those planning and review costs are simply costs of doing business in the development world.
If Patrick believes that he has all the answers for the town board, he should move within the town limits and run for office. But, then, cheering from the sidelines without being accountable for the decision-making is so much easier.
Former Granby mayor