Councilman: Vote no on Initiative Ordinance No. 2 |

Councilman: Vote no on Initiative Ordinance No. 2

It is rare that I write a letter to the editor, but I feel that the vote on the Initiative Ordinance No. 2 is important for me to address.

The initiative ordinance is not about Base Village, it is about changing the land use code. The proponents of this initiative say it will give you a smaller Base Village. It could actually jeopardize not only any Base Village from being built, but the redevelopment of properties such as the Snowmass Inn, the mall, the Wildwood Hotel and the Stonebridge Inn.

Currently, our land use code requires a super-majority of three-quarters of the Town Council to approve a development that requires certain variances from the land use code. These variances would be necessary for the above-listed properties.

The initiative would require not only this safeguard but would require voter approval in addition. This is because the initiative is not about Base Village or any other specific development, it is about changing the land use code to make it more restrictive for all development and redevelopment

We have the ability to vote on any development that we think is too big or too dense with a tool called referendum. This is a decision that the voters make when they know what the development’s final program entails.

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The Town Council is still reviewing Base Village. When four or five of the five Town Council members agree that the proposal is acceptable, an ordinance will be approved. The reason a super-majority is needed for this application is due to the wisdom of previous councils’ decision to let there be variances where appropriate when three-quarters of the Town Council agrees. This is the way we review individual applications and also derive community benefits and amenities from an applicant.

If you, the voters, feel that the council has made a mistake on the application and it should not have been approved, then you can petition for a referendum to approve or disallow the council’s action. This gets you a public vote on a specific proposal, and you have not changed the land use code, as is being proposed by the initiative committee.

Please vote NO on Initiative No. 2 on March 16.

As always, I would appreciate anyone who would like to speak with me concerning any matter before the Town Council to please stop by the Mountain Dragon or give me a call. Thank you for the privilege of being your public servant.

Douglas Mercatoris

Mayor Pro Tem

Snowmass Village

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