Montrose, CO — City Councilors met for their regular meeting on Tuesday evening, January 16, to appoint a new member to the Youth City Council and vote on a number of ordinances and contract awards.
Mayor Barbara Bynum and councilors Dave Frank, Doug Glaspell, David Reed, and Ed Ulibarri met in the City Council Chambers at the Elks Civic Building along with city staff.
The following is a summary of the primary topics discussed during the meeting.
Watch the meeting here.
YOUTH CITY COUNCIL APPOINTMENT
City Councilors voted unanimously to appoint Peter Phillips for a vacant position on the 2023-2024 Youth City Council.
No members of the public offered public comments.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
City Councilors voted unanimously to approve the minutes of the January 2 special City Council meeting and regular meeting.
The city’s archive of past meeting minutes can be found on the Public Meetings Portal and at CityofMontrose.org/ArchiveCenter.
INTERGOVERNMENTAL AGREEMENT WITH MONTROSE RECREATION DISTRICT
City Councilors voted unanimously to approve proposed changes to the Intergovernmental Agreement, IGA, between the City of Montrose and the Montrose Recreation District regarding shared services.
City Planner Jace Hochwalt said the city and rec district staff review the agreement each year and discuss any needed changes to meet the needs of both organizations and the public. The goal of the agreement is a collaboration that will save each entity – and therefore community members – money and increase efficiency and partnership. The agreement then comes before the City Council and the Recreation District for approval.
The City Council reviewed this agreement at the December 4, 2023, work session and the Montrose Recreation District Board of Directors reviewed and approved it at their January 4, 2024, board meeting.
Neither entity is proposing significant changes for 2024. Changes include:
- The city will provide asphalt patching or crack sealing services to the district for any facilities they designate, up to a cost of $4,000. Additional services will be provided pursuant to the rates in the agreement.
- Other public spaces in the Baldridge Park Regional Park Complex are identified in addition to the Cerise fields and the Rotary Amphitheater.
- The Flex Park in Colorado Outdoors is identified and the associated maintenance responsibilities are specified.
- The city will provide a free Black Canyon Card to full-time MRD employees instead of discounted annual passes. This is more accessible than discounts for MRD employees.
- Trash, recycling, and other fees were updated with current rates.
COMMERCIAL KITCHEN GRANT APPLICATION
City Councilors voted unanimously to approve a commercial kitchen grant for 1910 Market & Restaurant located at 232, 238, and 242 E. Main Street, in Montrose.
According to Anthony Russo, the applicant will receive $191,520 to support the purchase of a full kitchen to be used by 1910 Restaurant and in support of an adjacent retail market.
The kitchen will be the property of Twinso Holdings, LLC, and will remain with the building. This discussion was started in early 2023 and the kitchen application has been expected for several months.
COLORADO OUTDOORS FLEX PARK CONSTRUCTION CONTRACT
City Councilors voted unanimously to approve $424,137 in expenditures for the construction of the Colorado Outdoors Flex Park. This includes the award of a construction contract to Skip Huston Construction for $399,937 and a survey and engineering support contract to Del-Mont Consultants for $24,200.
City Engineer Scott Murphy said master plans for Colorado Outdoors (located immediately west of the Justice Center on Grand Avenue) have envisioned the construction of a small neighborhood park at some point in the course of its development. Within Colorado Outdoors, construction of the Uncompahgre Riverway Trail and its associated public restroom, Bright Beginnings childcare facility, and the Montrose Recreation District’s (MRD) Flex Rec facility have helped to drive the need for construction of the park in 2024.
To that end, the city applied for a grant from the Colorado Health Foundation to help fund the construction of the park and was successful in securing $350K in grant funds. Following the award of this grant, the city then moved forward with the design of the park. The park is to be situated immediately adjacent to the four facilities discussed above. the park’s design is relatively simple due to budget constraints but has been designed to allow for items such as play boulders, gazebos, and picnic structures to be added at a later date.
The park is to be constructed on a parcel of land being donated to the City of Montrose by the developers of Colorado Outdoors. This donation has been secured through a memorandum of agreement and has an appraised value of $350K. Once the donation documents are finalized, they will also come before City Council for approval around March 2024.
The city has also been working to secure the Morada cultural resource site near North 9th Street within Colorado Outdoors. The purchase of the land and formal preservation of this site are being implemented as separate, standalone projects within the city’s 2024 budget.
RATHBONE HOTEL DEED OF EASEMENT AUTHORIZATION
City Councilors voted unanimously to approve a pair of ordinances authorizing the utility and access easements along the western property line of the former Montrose City Hall located at 433 South First Street to aid in the construction of the Rathbone Hotel.
Ordinances 2656 and 2657 both passed on first reading.
Public Works Director Jim Scheid said the owners of the Rathbone Hotel have requested sewer service and access easements on the eastern side of the hotel property, located on the corner of S. 1st St and Cascade Ave. The property to the east of the hotel is owned by the city and is part of the parcel that was the former City Hall.
The area that is being requested as a deeded easement has been and is currently used for parking. There are other city-owned utilities in this “parking area” that would likely make it unusable for future building expansion or other structures. This area is envisioned to continue as parking/alley access in the future. Due to the dense infill of parcels, access to sewer mainlines in the downtown area can be complicated and may require easements to be able to get from their property to a main sewer line. This is the case with the Rathbone Hotel property. Other sewer line alignments for this property would have been more complex and problematic. This realignment of the sewer line will also correct an issue with the old sewer line unlying the foundation of a neighboring property. The access easement is for the addition of an ADA-accessible ingress/egress to the back of the building. For architectural reasons, the back of the building was the most suitable location for this access point.
MONTROSE CITY HALL FACADDE PROJECT CMGC CONTRACT AWARD
City Councilors voted 4-1 to approve $2,837,467 for construction of the City Hall façade replacement project. This will include a contract amendment with FCI Constructors for the services of the Construction Manager General Contractor (CMGC) in the amount of $2,424,228.
Public Works Director Jim Scheid said once the contract is awarded, FCI will move forward with procuring the long-lead items for the project. Windows and some of the stone are anticipated to be a long lead time so it is important to get contracts in place to allow for the procurement of those products.
FCI has been working with city staff to develop a plan for how the operation of City Hall will interact with a large-scale construction project like this façade replacement. It is anticipated that the construction activities starting with the demo of the sidewalk and façade replacement work will begin in May of 2024. It is also anticipated that some of the staff within City Hall may be relocated to other facilities during the construction project to allow for better access to the public.
2024 VEHICLE AND EQUIPMENT PURCHASE RECOMMENDATION
City Councilors voted unanimously to approve vehicle and equipment purchases for the following city divisions in the total amount of $2,087,432:
- Public Works - Shared Side Dump Semi Trailer
- Public Works/Parks - Ventrac Mower/Plow
- Public Works/Streets - Loader and Backhoe
- Public Works/Trash and Recycle - Two Refuse Trucks
- Public Works/Streets - Street Sweeper
- Black Canyon Golf Course - Golf Rough Mower
- Police Department -Patrol and Admin Vehicles
- City Hall Civic Campus - Ford Escape
- General Fleet Vehicle
- Public Works - Bucket Truck
2024 STREETLIGHT UPGRADE AUTHORIZATION
City Councilors voted unanimously to approve Year 2 of the Street Light Upgrade Project, in partnership with DMEA, for an amount of $120,000.
Public Works Director Jim Scheid said the City of Montrose currently has approximately 1900 streetlights on a variety of street types and most of these fixtures are High-Pressure Sodium (HPS) or Mercury Vapor (MV) fixture type. These fixtures were originally installed in the 1950s and 1960s and have been the primary fixture type for street lighting until 2010 when the LED fixtures were introduced to the market. Over the last 10 years, as the HPS or MV fixtures have failed or needed replacement they have been replaced with a Light-Emitting Diode (LED) fixture.
The City of Montrose successfully initiated the first year of the Street Light Upgrade Project in 2023, partnering with DMEA. This successful year has led to the replacement of over 400 streetlights with energy-efficient LEDs, resulting in an impressive monthly electricity savings of $4,000, or approximately $50,000 annually. Based on this success, the city has decided to continue this project into its second year.
- 2023 scope completed: over 400 lights changed to LEDs; $50,000 yearly savings.
- 2024 plan: Increase project budget to $120,000, anticipating cost increases on fixtures.
- DMEA Partnership: Continued collaboration with DMEA, a valuable partner in this initiative.
City Councilors voted unanimously to approve an application for a Local Planning Capacity Grant through the Colorado Department of Local Affairs, DOLA. The purpose of this grant application is to secure funding to replace the current planning and development permitting software with a new permitting solution. The new permitting system is intended to contribute to a streamlined affordable housing approval process as defined by Proposition 123.
City Planner Jace Hochwalt said the Local Planning Capacity Grant is an opportunity that was created by the passage of Proposition 123. The grant was established by DOLA and is managed by the Community Development Office within DOLA’s Division of Local Government. The intent of the program is to increase the capacity of local government departments and divisions responsible for processing land use, permitting, and zoning applications for housing projects.
The program supports local governments’ capacity to address affordable housing, especially by simplifying and expediting development review, permitting, and zoning of affordable housing. Acceptable ways to use this funding include hiring consultants for process development, hiring employees for more planning capacity, or acquiring new permitting software. The City of Montrose, having opted-in to Proposition 123, committed to achieving a fast-track process by 2026 in order to continue to take advantage of funding opportunities provided by Proposition 123.
The maximum request for this grant opportunity is $200,000, with a required 20% local match. City staff would be requesting the grant for the purpose of funding software implementation and data extraction, as well as the first year of new software annual maintenance and operations costs. This amount is not expected to exceed $100,000 and as such, city staff is seeking a grant of up to $100,000 with a 20% match.
Finance Director Shani Wittenberg delivered the sales, use, and excise tax report for November 2023.
Read all finance reports in their entirety here: www.cityofmontrose.org/259/Finance
All City Council meetings are recorded and made available online via the city’s website and cable channels 191 for Charter subscribers and 970 for Elevate subscribers. Replays of council meetings are also broadcast at 6 p.m. on the same channels on days that the council is not in session.
In addition, each regular meeting is archived on the City of Montrose’s YouTube channel.
Residents can watch all regular City Council meetings and work sessions on-demand through the city’s Public Meetings Portal.