Rifle City Council recap

Staff Report

Liquor license approved

Council unanimously approved on March 16 the appointment of Angela Aibner Strode as a voting member of the Visitor Improvement Fund board.

Strode had served as an alternate on the board, which advises City Council on spending revenues from the city’s 2.5 percent lodging tax, since May of 2014.

“As a resident and business owner in Rifle, I care a great deal about the quality of life in our community and our local economy,” Strode wrote in a letter to Council. “To strengthen these areas, we should work to improve the perception of our town and to bring more visitors into Rifle.”

Strode cited her past efforts in supporting those endeavors including: her work on the Rifle Recreation and Community Center campaign — an effort that was defeated by voters — in 2013; her participation in the Downtown Development and Design Academy on strengthening the local economy in 2014; and her experience as a local business owner since September 2014, which involved creating“a storefront in our downtown that is visually appealing and creates a sense of community.”

“My track record as an alternate with the VIF board also shows my willingness and ability to serve. The board recently elected me to serve as vice president, and I have been attending the GRIT marketing meetings,” she wrote in her letter. “Finally, my education and experience in the areas of public relations and law give me a unique combination of critical thinking and marketing knowledge which can be used to further the city’s goals.”

The current VIF board recommended Strode be appointed as voting member to fill a vacancy on the seven-member board. Council unanimously approved the recommendation, which by default created a vacancy in the alternate position. Rifle Planning Director Nathan Lindquist told Council that the city would begin the process to fill the vacant alternate position.

Strode joins the other six VIF board members: Debi Billings, Tanya Doose, Bob Gardner, Kevin Kelley, Keith Lambert and Kristine Llacuna.

Contracts awarded

Infrastructure repairs and projects can move forward following Council’s decision to award several contracts.

The first went to GMCO Corporation for crack seal, chip and seal, and seal-coating work on several streets and public parking areas in town. The contract is for $121,007 and Council also agreed to allow up to another $50,000 to be spent for crack sealing — bringing the maximum total that cannot be exceeded to $171,007.

GMCO was the only company to actually submit a bid for this specific street repair project.

Council also awarded a $239,691 contract to Tally Ho to complete a portion of the Rifle Creek Trail.

The specific portion runs from City Market to 11th Street. Construction is anticipated to start in April and is expected to take roughly six weeks.

Code cleanup

In and effort to improve efficiency, Rifle will not longer send notices of delinquent payments and warnings of water service shutoff via certified mail, nor will notices be posted on the doors of delinquent rate payers.

Council unanimously approved the changes to the code, which was proposed by staff as a way to streamline notifications and reduce the impact on staff time.

The changes also include clarification on the time line for when payments must be received to bring accounts current, as well as drops the $7.84 fee for processing notices to $5 and increases the $35 turnoff fee to $50. Attorney Jim Neu pointed out that the turnoff fee also covers turning services back on once a rate payer brings his or her account current. In other jurisdictions, an additional fee is typically charged for turning services back on, Neu added.

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