OURAY COUNTY BRIEFS | Finally, Visual Impacts Vote Scheduled
by Peter Shelton
Mar 31, 2013 | 1413 views | 0 0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print

OURAY – After three years and countless hours of debate, the Ouray Board of County Commissioners can finally see the end of the visual impacts tunnel.

At its regular meeting Tuesday the BOCC set a date, two dates – May 16 and 17 (if necessary), from 6-10 p.m. at the 4-H Events Center in Ridgway – for what they hope will be the final public hearing(s) on revisions to Section 9 of the Land Use Code, visual impacts.

County Planner Mark Castrodale told the commissioners that the Planning Commission had wrapped up its work on Section 9 last week and was forwarding its draft and resolution recommending approval of the proposed regulations.

Commissioner Don Batchelder asked, “Will all of the testimony from the public hearings be part of our packet” prior to final deliberations?

“Yes. They are huge,” replied Castrodale. “There is a lot to go through.” But, he said, the minutes of prior meetings should be approved in about a month, by the time of the BOCC’s April 23 meeting.

The commissioners looked at various dates with Event Center Manager Susan Long and decided on the May dates for the public hearing. “I think we should do everything we can to keep these dates,” said Commissioner Lynn Padgett. “Otherwise, we’ll be into July” before another suitable date comes around.

Batchelder concurred. “It’s in everyone’s best interest to wrap this up. Whatever the outcome.”



The Ouray Board of County Commissioners  this week instructed County Road and Bridge Superintendent Chris Miller “to remove the sign on Camp Bird Road (CR 361).”

“That was quick,” said Commission Chair Mike Fedel.

The sign referenced was the controversial one Miller placed, on his own volition, a few weeks ago prohibiting ice climbers from standing in the roadway or otherwise impeding the increased mining traffic on the narrow canyon road.

The sign stirred strong emotions, from climbers and miners, and resulted in numerous county meetings on what to do about the conflict.

Commissioner Lynn Padgett, who was uncomfortable all along with the wording singling out climbers, suggested the BOCC “come out of our April 30 meeting with clear board direction” on language for one or more new signs that will help mitigate problems “caused by two-way traffic on a one-way road.”



County Information Technology Manager Jeff Bockes came to the Ouray Board of County Commissioners this week with a proposal to update and upgrade the county’s website from a self-hosted site to one that would be “a sub-site of the Montrose city and county portal site.”

Bockes said it would be “a really good deal at under $10,000. It would be at least $15,000 retail,” with content management by an outfit called CivicPlus. “It’s a really good platform,” Bockes said.

Asked how much the county spends now, Bockes said it’s hard to calculate: “It’s all staff time right now.”

Commissioner Lynn Padgett was a dissenting voice. “This is not the only way to have the county’s website hosted off-site,” she said. “You can get it out of the courthouse for $500. I’ve priced it.”

Bockes said the CivicPlus price goes up next week.

“I understand the sales pitch,” Padgett said. “It’s like a used car salesman; if you walk off the lot, the deal goes away. My question is: can we use CivicPlus to tell our unique story, to reflect who we are? No offense, but the Montrose website is a milk carton. We can do better.”

Commission Chair Mike Fedel asked, “Is it financially wise to do this? That’s the crux. Let’s put this on the agenda. We’ll get back to you, Jeff. How’s that?”

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