Public Hearing on North Gateway Park Annexation Scheduled by City Council

  City of Lamar 2013

The annexation of the Valco Pond area, or North Gateway Park into the City of Lamar, was discussed by the council and City Administrator, John Sutherland.  A petition of annexation of the 108.13 acres will be reviewed during a public hearing set for Monday, October 14.  The city was deeded the property by Valco owner, Tom Brubaker this past April and the city has been at work modifying some of the property including filling in one of the four ponds.  The pond nearest Highway 50 is being graded for public access and a parking lot has been leveled off for a grand opening now set for Saturday, September 7 at Noon.  City Administrator, John Sutherland, said the annexation will also bring the park area under the jurisdiction of the Lamar Police Department. 

The Lamar City council approved a request for the final plat of the Viaero-Hartshorn subdivision during a public hearing on Monday evening, August 26.    Property owned by Viaero Wireless and Monte Hartshorn located along the 1100 block of North 13 Street in Lamar will be subdivided into two smaller lots.  Property owners within 300 feet of the site were sent official notices.  The 195 foot tall tower is also cleared by the Federal Aviation Administration for any planes using the Lamar Municipal Airport.  Edward Gonzalez, in charge of site acquisition for Viaero, said the amount of wireless data traffic for the company has increased 15 fold between 2011 and 2012 and this tower and another proposed tower is needed to maintain customer service.  Lamar Fire Chief Marshall Cook asked if the backup generator at the site will use propane gas, as well as the size of the proposed tank.  Gonzalez said it would hold 1,000 gallons, but if there was a problem, the company could tie into a natural gas line to meet zoning specifications.  He expected the new tower would be in service by early 2014. 

Vaughn Concrete Products was awarded a bid to construct a pre-cast trench drain.  Of the ten requests for proposals, Vaughn Concrete was the only business replying.  The city has used their products in the past, according to City Engineer, Wiley Work.  The City of Lamar Street Department needs the drain as part of their project to re-build Crystal Street from Avenida Colonia, north to the entrance of Dragon Enterprises.  The project, when completed in 2013 or 2014, will capture the water running east off the Ranco business lot and carry in north on the west side of the street, rather than crossing Crystal Street to its east side.  The bid on the drain was $11,280. 

In a housekeeping move to conduct a coordinated election with Prowers County for the upcoming November 5 general election, the council approved an agreement with the County Clerk & Recorder, allowing her to act as the designed election official.  This election, and all subsequent elections, will be by mail ballot. 

The City of Lamar is receiving almost $1 million in an Energy and Mineral Impact Assistance Grant to partially fund the south well field transmission line replacement project.  The Colorado Department of Local Affairs approved the March 25 application from the city and on August 16 was informed of the approval for $985,000 for the project.  The grant is contingent on the city securing the balance of the funding for the total project.  The grant is a one year offer and is almost half the cost of the entire project. 

On a related matter, Lamar City Administrator, John Sutherland, informed the council that work on the Honeywell Energy Performance Contract is finished.  A contingency fund of $228,409 was created and $67,015 was spent leaving a balance of $161,364.  Additional improvements to the well field and storm water systems have been identified, and if completed will provide more operating cost savings for the City.  The City Council authorized the work.  The extra funding will be applied to work on three city wells, a vehicle will be equipped with GPS capabilities and improvements will be done to a lift station which is connected to storm water run-off. 

Administrator Sutherland provided the council with a future timeline of September events for Lamar: 

Sept 2   City Offices Closed for Labor Day.
Sept 3   Reception to meet new CDOT Region 10 Commissioner, Bill Thiebaut, 11am, County Board Room.
Sept 4   City Council Breakfast, 7-8am, Subway, 2:30pm, Corporation for National & Community Service Meeting at Council Chambers, Public Hearing on County Improvement District, 6pm, SOS Center.
Sept 7   North Gateway Park Grand Opening at Noon.
Sept 12 Live-Stream on Health Equity and ACA, 11:15am to 1pm, RSVP for Lunch & Handouts at Annex.
Sept 14 Second Annual Tri-State 9-1-1 Remembrance, 10am Parade with activities following at Fairgrounds, Build North Side Park Volunteer Day, 7am.
Sept 19 CDOT Public Hearing on Reliever Route, 5pm-7pm at County Annex, Joint City/County Budget Meeting, 7pm, County Annex.
Sept 20 Pedal the Plains Events in Lamar.
Sept 25 Colorado Municipal League Meeting, 4pm, Lamar Elks Lodge.
Sept 28 Lamar Airport Fly-in, Planes to Plains.

The council moved to go into executive session to develop and discuss strategy negotiations with ARPA and provide instructions to its designated negotiator.  Rick Rigel, ARPA General Manager, Houssin Hourieh, Superintendent for Lamar Light and Power and Ron Cook Lamar Utilities Board member were on hand for the meeting with the council.

By Russ Baldwin


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