by Sam Klomhaus
Mail Staff Writer
In revisiting the inclusionary housing ordinance, which city council passed just over a year ago, Community Development Director Glen Van Nimwegen said during Tuesday’s council meeting that he will go to the Salida Planning Commission to vet some changes to the ordinance.
The inclusionary housing ordinance requires at least 11.5 percent of units in new developments to be affordable housing, or developers can pay an in-lieu fee.
Van Nimwegen said the ordinance hasn’t stopped development in Salida, but there have been some concerns from the community.
Councilwoman Cheryl Brown-Kovacic said the community guidelines and deed restrictions related to the ordinance need to be specified.
Van Nimwegen noted there was no direct action to be taken at the meeting, which was more for providing direction.
Councilwoman Jane Templeton asked staff to think about taking the in-lieu fee amount out of the municipal code so it can be more easily adjusted.
During the public hearing soliciting feedback on the ordinance, Planning Commission member Doug Mendelson said the in-lieu fee contained in the ordinance isn’t enough to compel developers to actually build affordable housing, and it should be done away with.
In other business, council:
• Voted unanimously to adopt the Downtown Parking Study as an advisory document to guide the city’s policies moving forward. No one spoke at the public hearing for the document.
• Voted unanimously to approve an ordinance on second reading that raises the maximum fine for code violations from $1,000 to $2,650.
• Voted unanimously to conduct the city’s community grant program through a donor advised fund managed by the Chaffee County Community Foundation.
• Voted unanimously to support grant applications to the Colorado Department of Transportation to help fund projects brought to light by the Future 50 project. Those projects are: realignment of G Street at U.S. 50 and installation of a signalized pedestrian crossing at that intersection; sidewalks on U.S. 50 from Holman Avenue to the Milk Run Trail; a shared-use path on Holman Avenue from U.S. 50 to the Monarch Spur Trail; expansion of sidewalks on U.S. 50 from Holman Avenue to CR 110; installation of a gateway island within U.S. 50 west of Holman Avenue; and completion of the Striker Trail connection to the Monarch Spur Trail.
• Voted unanimously to allow several transfers within different funds in the 2019 budget. There is no impact on the overall city budget, a staff memo to city council said.
• Voted 4-2, with Councilman Dan Shore and Templeton against, to appoint Johann “Kit” Steimle to be an alternate member of the Planning Commission. Shore had moved to continue the vote to Nov. 19 so the incoming council members could vote. The other council members said Steimle’s qualifications made him a great candidate for the commission. Council interviewed Steimle at its work session Monday.
• Voted 5-1, with Councilman Mike Bowers against, to approve on first reading an ordinance allowing the annexation of a 2-acre parcel at 6906 Vandaveer Road that is slated to be developed into a 32-unit pocket neighborhood. During the public hearing for the annexation, Joe DeLuca said the developers (Paige and Joe Judd) are trying to build affordable housing in Salida. The Planning Commission recommended approval Oct. 28. The second reading is scheduled for Nov. 19.
• Voted unanimously on first reading to approve an ordinance zoning the parcel R3 (high-density residential). A public hearing is scheduled for Nov. 19.
Tuesday was the last council meeting for Bowers and Brown-Kovacic, who will be replaced by Alisa Pappenfort and Mike Pollock, respectively.