Town Board Meeting: January 10, 20227 min read
Hi neighbors! In Monday night’s Town Board Meeting, we heard an update and discussed recovery from the Marshall Fire, granted emergency authorization to our Town Manager to approve larger purchases in the aftermath of the fire, and opened a public hearing for the adoption of the 2021 edition of the International Energy Conservation Code. (Please note that these building code updates are more relevant to the public than ever with the rebuilding that will need to happen in light of the fire.) Ready to find out more on what happened? As usual, you may read this post in written form, subscribe to the Laura for Superior podcast, or scroll to the bottom for a video recap.
Disclaimer: While I do my best to represent an honest and accurate portrayal of meetings and events, the following should be considered an editorial that represents one person’s interpretation. At the request of my fellow Board members, I am not attributing any points to them. For the most unbiased and complete information, I encourage residents to watch the meeting video and draw their own conclusions – visit the town website at SuperiorColorado.gov for the official meeting video and meeting minutes.
Item 2D – Marshall Fire Update and Discussion
Before I dive into the recap, I want to first offer my sincere condolences to the whole community on our loss. Many of you have lost homes, and I can’t imagine what you are going through. Still others are fortunate to have their homes, but have lost their sense of security and may still be grieving. No matter what losses you have suffered, please remember that all of us are experiencing trauma and it’s okay to need help. Click here to hear my thoughts on the importance of taking care of your mental health and to find resources. Even if you have never sought counseling before for mental health, or don’t know exactly what you need, it’s perfectly appropriate for you to talk to someone now.
Based on the listening sessions held on Saturday, Town Staff is working on an FAQ document that will be published to the website soon.
For those who have lost homes, residents will need to sign a release waiver for debris removal – this does not commit you to going through the town for debris removal, but it prevents a roadblock later if you decide you want to use the town’s debris removal services. In the meantime, residents can remove private cars from their property. This week, a contractor will begin removing debris from public rights-of-way and streets. Utility billing has also updated their system to suspend billing for all properties that were destroyed.
Staff is continuing to flush the water system throughout town, and after the latest tests on Friday, all levels were still showing in compliance with state standards. However, I have grave concerns about the quality of our water. While I believe the results of the tests that have been done so far, there continue to be major problems at individual homes (including my own), and they seem to be happening at random homes – not necessarily those that were tested. Town Staff is working to put together a plan to identify / remediate, and I am expecting more testing of impacted homes to be done this week. You can follow my updates on this particular issue on my Laura for Superior Facebook page. In the meantime, bottled water is still available for pickup at the Superior Community Center for residents who need it.
The Superior Community Center will reopen to the public next week, albeit with modified hours, and programming will not resume until February. We are looking into COVID19 case rates to confirm safe occupancy limits, but our SCC should be a good gathering place for the community.
Economic Development Director Jill Mendoza shared an update on business recovery. The first businesses in Superior began reopening on January 7th, and things have progressed since there. Her plan going forward includes a virtual meeting on January 12th at 3pm to provide updates, share resources, and assess individual impacts, followed by on-site office hours with the Small Business Development Center on January 14th from 9am-12pm at the Superior Community Center. Director Mendoza also created a one-page directory of resources for businesses, which you can access here. Director Mendoza is also working with our Finance Director Paul Nilles to better assess impact of the loss of business on our town revenue. The Executive Director of the Superior Chamber of Commerce, Deana Miller, also emphasized the Chamber’s close collaboration with Director Mendoza and the town.
We decided to have a Board work session on Wednesday from 6pm-8pm to work through additional items related to the Marshall Fire. The public may attend on Zoom, but as is typical for our work sessions, we will not be opening up the line for public comment; instead, please feel free to send in your thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Item 3 – Consent Agenda
After public comment, our Board unanimously passed the consent agenda – including meeting minutes, a proclamation for Radon Action Month, a proclamation of support for The Withers Collection Photography Exhibit at the Dairy Arts Center, a resolution establishing a designated public place for the posting of meeting notices, an intergovernmental agreement with Boulder County for the co-responder program (discussed at our September 13 meeting), and a resolution appointing Mayor Pro Tem Mark Lacis as Rocky Flats Stewardship Council Director and Trustee Ken Lish as the Alternate Director.
Item 3I, a resolution authorizing our Town Manager Matt Magley to execute contracts related to the Marshall Fire, was pulled for discussion. While the Town Manager typically needs to obtain Board approval for purchases over a certain dollar amount, we recognize that there may be needs for faster decisions due to the Marshall Fire. After some discussion on how to limit this, we decided to temporarily extend that purchasing limit to $1M for 60 days. This passed unanimously.
Item 3J, an intergovernmental agreement with Boulder County for debris removal, was also pulled for discussion. The Town has been coordinating with the County on debris removal, and due to the state of the emergency, the IGA needed to be signed prior to the Board meeting, but at Monday night’s meeting, after talking about the importance of communications and coordination, we ratified the IGA unanimously.
Item 4 – Public Hearing for the Adoption of the 2021 Edition of the International Energy Conservation Code
Finally, we opened a public hearing to reconsider the adoption of the International Energy Conservation Code along with amendments. We last discussed this at our December 13, 2021 meeting, but asked for additional information before moving forward. However, the situation to adopt these codes is now quite a bit different. Where originally, these codes would have applied to true new builds in Superior, with the volume of rebuilding that is now going to have to happen since the fire, we want to be careful to not penalize those trying to rebuild what they lost. We walked through the changes in detail, but decided to postpone a decision until we can get still more information on the cost implications of these changes and how they may apply to rebuilds. As we get these costs, I would encourage residents to weigh in with their opinions – we expect to discuss this at our February 14 Board Meeting.
Thank you so much for taking the time to read / listen to this recap – I hope it is helpful! Our Board is always open to hearing your comments, questions, and concerns – you may always email your feedback to email@example.com, or to me specifically at firstname.lastname@example.org. As a reminder, any messages sent to a government email are part of the public record and will have your name attached; if you feel the need to write in anonymously, you may always comment at the bottom of my blog post recaps.