Grand County talks to Fraser about annexing Byers Ranch, recycling
Sky-Hi Daily News
Grand County Commissioner James Newberry spoke to Fraser’s trustees Wednesday night about Byers Peak Properties and its request for a special use permit to operate a tubing hill adjacent to the existing Fraser Tubing Hill.
The property is under the county’s jurisdiction but is awaiting annexation into Fraser. However, since it has not yet been annexed, Clark Lipscomb, owner of Byers Peak Property, is requesting a permit through the county.
Newberry explained that in Grand County’s master development plan, it states that when someone wants to build or develop on a piece of land that is within three miles of a municipality, it is the county’s position to “force everything into the towns,” meaning: “Go talk to the town first and go through their annexation process.”
If the town doesn’t want to annex, then the developer can approach the county, he said.
This situation is “odd,” Newberry added, because the developer has initiated the annexation process with the town of Fraser but wants a special use permit from the county for a portion of that property.
“It doesn’t make sense for us. As a town, I wouldn’t want others to make that decision,” Newberry said. “You need to take the entire development into consideration. You can’t just piece things together. You need to look at the whole development.”
The big picture Newberry referred to is Lipscomb’s plans for all of Byers Peak Property, not just the tubing hill. In a letter to the town, the commissioners stated they would prefer to see the entire project within one jurisdiction, and they believe the annexation process is the first step in that direction.
“It’s a bigger issue than it’s made out to be. We want to make sure the people making the decisions are the ones that’ll be affected,” Newberry said.
Cook told Newberry that she was appreciative of the county’s “watch-dog approach” to ensure there’s proper coordination with businesses and ventures that abut the town.
Lipscomb, who attended Wednesday night’s meeting, shared his sentiments about why he feel it is unfair the county would take this position.
Newberry added that the county’s master plan does not parallel with Lipscomb’s proposition. For one, it does not allow development in an open meadow.
The trustees agreed to let town staff digest the information and share their input at the next town meeting, Jan. 23. The board will then decide whether it wants to be the sole carrier of the annexation process.
Newberry asked Fraser whether it would be willing to fund the recycling bins at the landfill in Granby until a better recycling system is found for the entire county.
Request for proposals are being finalized ” a final draft was sent to town managers Tuesday ” but a company to take over probably won’t be found until the summer, Newberry said. Until that time, Karen Bloomfield, owner of Valley Recycles, has asked for compensation for the recycling bins at the landfill, or else they will be removed.
Winter Park Mayor Nick Teverbaugh sent out a letter to a few towns asking to split the cost for three months. The county is paying $5,000 for January, and Winter Park and Granby agreed to pay $800 a month for the next three. Hot Sulphur Springs pays $100 a month. (Grand Lake and Kremmling already have recycling established).
Fraser paid $5,000 last year to keep the bins at the site next to East Grand Fire Department, but they were pulled half way through the year. Trustees and staff believe Bloomfield still owes them $2,500, and is looking to negotiate with her before deciding on an amount.
New restaurant coming
A new Mexican restaurant will be up and running in Fraser in about two to three weeks. The restaurant, Azteca Mexican Restaurant, is located where Hungry Bear used to be.
Two representatives of the restaurant attended last night’s meeting to receive approval for a liquor license. The license was approved, pending the state’s approval, which has not come through yet. The liquor license from the state will probably come through in two to three weeks and is the only thing delaying the opening of the restaurant.
One man asked the board of trustees whether it could grant a temporary liquor license while it waited for state approval.
“I promise I will not paint the building,” he said to a room of laughter.
The trustees said they could not grant the request because it is out of their hands as the state has higher authority.
Icy trademark fight
The town of Fraser has been served its papers for the lawsuit with International Falls, Minn., regarding the town’s trademark, ‘Icebox of the Nation.’
“We’ve been served,” said Town Manger Jeff Durbin, waving the papers in the air.
Fraser filed for the trademark on Nov. 26, 2007, which reads: “Fraser. Icebox of the Nation.”
Officials in International Falls say they have been using the nickname “Icebox of the Nation” since at least 1948.
Fraser claims it had the real first use, dating to 1956.
Officials in Minnesota asked Fraser early last year to withdraw their trademark application for the nickname, which International Falls let expire 11 years ago.
“We knew this was coming,” said Mayor Fran Cook.
Look for a more detailed story in a future issue of the Sky-Hi Daily News.
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