Lamar Begins Ordinance on Marijuana Prohibition

 City of Lamar 2013

The Lamar City Council had a relatively light agenda for the final meeting of May this past Tuesday, May 28.  The meeting was moved to Tuesday to accommodate the Memorial Day holiday.

Both the City of Lamar and Prowers County are enacting ordinances prohibiting certain uses of marijuana in an effort to counteract the passage of Amendment 64 from last November’s general election in Colorado.  The county attorney is drafting an ordinance for action by the commissioners.  The Lamar City Council passed the city’s ordinance on first reading during the Tuesday meeting.  The ordinance states that the City of Lamar is, “Prohibiting the Operation of Marijuana Cultivating Facilities, Marijuana Product Manufacturing Facilities, Marijuana Testing Facilities, Retail Marijuana stores, and/or Marijuana Establishments, and Amending Chapter 6 and Chapter 10 of the Municipal Code of the City of Lamar Pursuant to Article XVIII, Section 16 of the Colorado State Constitution”. 

Several steps need to be enacted on the state level for Colorado communities to have any buy-in regarding how marijuana use will be regulated by their specific ordinances.  July 1 is the deadline to be able to pass an ordinance detailing criminal penalties.  The state will begin to accept licenses for marijuana sales by October 1 in those communities that have not taken any steps to prohibit its use beyond medical marijuana which, according to City Attorney, Garth Nieschburg, will be allowed, but will still be regulated.

The city police department is getting a replacement vehicle.  Chief McCrea told the council a 2013 4 X 4 Chevy Tahoe is immediately available for $31,177 from a State procurement bid, or one will become available for $28,622, but it will take about two months for delivery.  The council recommended that the police department purchase the Tahoe for $31,177.  Four additional vehicles will be needed in 2014 and funds were budgeted for their lease in 2013.  At the time, the council put them on hold, pending a wait to verify city revenues.  During that wait period, the window for state bids closed and the lease will be rolled over into 2014. 

Lillian Norman was appointed to a five year term on the City Adjustments and Appeals board, replacing Don Lening and Scott Rankin was appointed to fill out the unexpired term of Delbert Pearson as well as a five year term on the board until July 2018.  Wayne Reinert was reappointed to a five year term on the Planning and Zoning Commission. 

Rick Akers, Parks and Recreation Director, informed the council that Ron or Wanda Trout would like to run the concession stand at the Ball Field Complex for the season.  The city will receive a 5% commission from the net income for the 2013 year.  Theirs was the only bid received for this year’s contract. 

In other action, City Administrator, John Sutherland, recognized Karen Woodard for her dedication, goodwill to the city’s vendors and efficiency and professionalism in her dealing with them.  Linda Rohlman, City Treasurer, said Woodard has served her city and community for 28 years and read from a letter sent to the city by a vendor describing her efficient manner.  PCDI Executive Director, Lisa Nolder, presented the council with her final activities update, as she submitted a letter of resignation effective May 31.  Nolder has accepted another position out of Lamar.  She presented the council with her 2012 report which was delivered by her during the PCDI annual meeting this past February.  A come and go reception is being held Wednesday, May 29 at 5pm at the PCDI offices in the Rodeway Cow Palace Inn. 

The council set three dates for preliminary work on the 2014 city budget.  They are July 8, September 9 and October 4 during which the final draft will be presented.  A public hearing on the proposed budget will be held on October 14 and a second and final reading will be held on October 28. 

Several reminders were presented regarding future events including:  a Community Conversation with Administrator John Sutherland will be held Thursday, May 30, from 6:30pm to 8:30pm at the HOPE Center, the former Lincoln Elementary School, The June 1 Open House and BBQ for the Lamar Library will be held from Noon to 2pm, the annual Relay for Life will be held June 1-2 at Savage Stadium again this year, the informal city council breakfast will be held on Wednesday, June 5 at 7am at the Rodeway Cow Palace Inn and the city will host the Colorado State High School Rodeo Finals at the fairgrounds June 5-9.   

City Administrator, John Sutherland informed the council he had been appointed to the South East Transportation Planning Region Board and to the Prowers County Emergency Telephone Authority Board which will give the city a voice on that body.  He also noted that Lamar was one of thirty communities in the nation selected to host a National Train Day Showcase.  Councilman Skip Ruedeman made a public presentation on the importance of train service to the community earlier in the month at the Lamar Welcome Center. 

By Russ Baldwin

Filed Under: BusinesscommunityEconomyFeaturedLamarLaw EnforcementProwers CountyRecreationSportsTourismTransportationWeather


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