Garfield County seeks citizens’ help | AspenTimes.com

Garfield County seeks citizens’ help

John Colson
Glenwood Springs correspondent
Aspen, CO Colorado

GLENWOOD SPRINGS – Garfield County is asking for a little help from residents in updating its 2000 Comprehensive Plan, the document that guides the county in land-use decisions.

The 10-month process begins next month and, if all goes according to plan, is expected to end with adoption of a new, 20-year comprehensive plan in the fall of 2010, according to Tamra Allen, one of the county’s planning staff.

Allen said this week that the county administration and elected leaders felt the old plan “drastically needed updating” in the wake of the national recession and the regional slump in oil and gas development.

“Some of the growth projections are irrelevant or inaccurate,” Allen said, “and … some of the base assumptions are obsolete.

“The comp plan is really intended to get some of the goals and vision of the community.”

Those goals and concepts can then be used to make additions or amendments to the county’s actual land-use codes, she said.

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The new plan, she added, will not have any effect on development projects that either are already approved or are in the pipeline, meaning applications for development review have been filed with the county.

“It will only impact those applications that come forth after the plan is adopted,” she said, adding that the board of county commissioners expects to adopt the plan in fall 2010.

To kick off the process, the county’s planning department has scheduled three public meetings in late November. A consultant will conduct the meeting, which will feature a presentation about the process, and a “polling technique” to gauge participant reaction to certain questions about how the county should regulate growth in the future.

The meetings are being held at various locations to enable citizens from all corners of the county to participate.

The first of the meetings will be on Nov. 18, at the Burning Mountains Fire Protection District facility in Silt; and at the New Castle Community Center. Both meetings begin at 6 p.m.

On Nov. 19, meetings will be held at the Battlement Mesa Recreation Center near Parachute; and at the Garfield County Administration building in Glenwood Springs. Again, the meetings begin at 6 p.m.

On Saturday, Nov. 21, meetings will be held at Carbondale Town Hall and at the Garfield County Health and Human Services building in Rifle, both starting at 9:30 a.m.

Additional meetings will be scheduled in the winter and spring, according to the planning department, to gather further input from area residents.

For more information, contact Allen by e-mail at tallen@garfield-county.com or by phone at 945-1377, extension 1630.

jcolson@postindependent.com

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