Garfield County to fill land-use advisory seats |

Garfield County to fill land-use advisory seats

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado – Garfield County citizens who are interested in helping to direct county land-use policies have two current opportunities to serve on advisory boards.

The county has been taking applications for several weeks now to fill seven open seats on the 10-member Garfield County Planning Commission. Today is the deadline for citizens to submit a letter of interest.

The planning commission reviews and makes recommendations to the Garfield Board of County Commissioners on land-use applications. It also reviews the county’s zoning and land-use regulations.

Openings on the planning commission are for five regular members and two alternates. Terms will be for one to three years.

Applicants for the planning commission are to be interviewed at the regular Feb. 6 BOCC meeting. Commissioners expect to decide on the appointments at their Feb. 13 meeting.

Meanwhile, the BOCC on Monday adopted a resolution formally establishing a temporary committee to recommend revisions the county’s Uniform Land Use Regulations.

The 11-member committee is to work for six months in follow-up to the recommendations offered by consultants from the Clarion Group late last year. A special working group also reviewed the county land-use code and made several of its own recommendations.

County planning officials are in the process of putting some of the short-term code revisions into a formal amendment to be presented to the planning commission for formal review.

The new advisory committee is to make further recommendations on long-term code revisions, using the earlier consultant and working group recommendations as a basis.

The code revisions are being sought by county commissioners in an attempt to streamline the land-use review process and stimulate economic development.

Commissioners agreed at their regular Monday meeting to seek applicants for the advisory committee. The deadline to apply will be Jan. 30, and the appointments will be made in early February.

The majority of the committee is to be made up of county residents, although some positions could be filled by those living outside the county.

The working group that was formed last year included several land-use attorneys and consultants, as well as natural gas industry representatives. Many of those people resided outside the county.

“We do have a lot of consultants and industry people who do business in Garfield County, but who don’t live here,” Commissioner Tom Jankovsky said.

That input can be valuable, he said, since those people are intimately familiar with the county’s land-use procedures.

But, Jankovsky acknowledged, “it can also be viewed as outside business consultants trying to come in and change your code.”

Commissioners agreed that two-thirds of the committee should be made up of county residents.

The land-use advisory committee is to meet weekly and give regular monthly updates to the BOCC.

In other business at Monday’s BOCC meeting, the board approved the interim contract for county attorney Andrew Gorgey to serve as acting county manager until the manager’s position is filled. Gorgey was appointed to the interim position after the commissioners terminated the contract of former longtime county manager Ed Green on Jan. 3.

Gorgey is to receive an extra $1,250 per month for handling the extra duties beyond his regular attorney duties, up until a new county manager is on board.

“My first and foremost duty will be as county attorney,” Gorgey advised the commissioners.

In the acting manager role, “I will work to carry out your policies and your vision … including your stated emphasis on streamlining the county’s regulatory structure so that the county is more conducive to business.

“The county, I feel, is in good hands … and we are as a group completely committed to ensure the citizens of the county receive the best level of services for their tax dollars,” Gorgey said.

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