Jill Beathard

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October 9, 2012
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Entertainment district passes on second reading

SNOWMASS VILLAGE - The Snowmass Village Town Council approved on Oct. 8 the second reading of an ordinance creating an entertainment district in Snowmass Village, in which licensed premises will be able to form common consumption areas, particularly for events. The creation of the district, which includes the mall and Base Village, does not allow for patrons to carry open containers throughout. What it does allow is for businesses to choose to work together and create a common, defined area where their guests can carry beverages between premises. Scott Calliham, of Base Camp Bar & Grill, said at the meeting that he supported the ordinance to make it easier to hold events similar to those that already go on in Base Village. "The whole point is that we can more easily stage events," he said. Businesses that wish to create a common consumption area will have to form a promotional association, to be certified by the Liquor Licensing Authority. The associations will be responsible for hiring their own security and obtaining an insurance policy, which will also name the town as an additional insured. Jerome Simecek, representing the Capitol Peak Lodge homeowner's association, read a resolution by the owners requesting that the ordinance mandate they and other owners of similar properties be added as insurers to any policy taken out for a common consumption area. Simecek said the owners had concerns about life safety issues and "people potentially making bad decisions." "If it is in Base Village, next to Capitol Peak ... they've got the right because it's going to be their property," said Councilman Fred Kucker. "If it's nowhere near them, I don't see why they even have an insurable interest."Town Attorney John Dresser explained that when businesses come forward as a promotional association requesting to create a common consumption area, they will present not just a map but an operational plan for hours, management, etc. "When that plan comes in, that would be the time for a property that's within that ... to come in," Dresser said. He said if the property is not in a common consumption area but is adjacent to it, owners of that property could make a case for being included in that discussion too. "You wouldn't want to blanketize every possible configuration ... with an extra insurer," he said. During the discussion, the council voted unanimously to omit the requirement that hired security personnel completes the same training that servers of alcohol undergo. Mayor Bill Boineau raised the concern that that would make it difficult for promotional associations to hire security. Calliham said about half of that training applies to security, but it's the "half that they're already pretty well-versed in.""What they are good at ... is identifying people who have overconsumed," Calliham said. Keeping that requirement would make it that much harder for bars and restaurants to afford and find workers with that specific training, especially in the winter when it's already difficult to find available people, Calliham said. Another concern Councilman Jason Haber had with the ordinance was the proximity of the Treehouse children's center in Base Village. He asked if it could be mandated that common consumption be limited to hours when kids aren't coming out of ski school. Calliham pointed out that events in Base Village are confined because of the fire lane in the middle of the plaza."The nature of the events we've been holding, in Base Village at least, tend to be drawn away from Treehouse," Calliham said. "Everything really draws back toward Base Camp, the barn building, and Sneaky's. ... The farther down in Base Village, the better it is for all of us." The ordinance puts the Liquor Licensing Authority in charge of certifying or decertifying promotional associations; determining the location, size, security and hours of common consumption areas; and allowing licensed premises to attach to the areas. jbeathard@snowmasssun.com

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The Aspen Times Updated Oct 9, 2012 04:19PM Published Oct 9, 2012 04:18PM Copyright 2012 The Aspen Times. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.