Following last Thursday's lengthy budget planning session, the Cedaredge town trustees met in executive session to discuss property issues related to the Surface Creek Trail.
Next the trustees held a public hearing regarding an application by the Grand Mesa Arts & Events Center (GMAEC) for a special event liquor license. The request was for the Sept. 11 Severin Brown concert. Two other license hearings for future GMAEC events were cancelled at the request of the applicants. No one spoke in opposition to the arts center's license request and it was subsequently approved during the trustees' regular meeting.
Re-convening in regular session, the trustees approved items on the consent agenda: the minutes of previous meetings, a financial report and disbursements for July 2018, and a liquor license renewal for Mesa Liquors. The trustees also approved a liquor license renewal for The Pondy but not as a part of the consent agenda. By policy The Pondy's request for renewal had to be voted on directly because a minor (and now resolved) gambling violation occurred in 2017. This incident was reported to the trustees by the State of Colorado, Liquor Enforcement Division. Police Chief Dan Sanders spoke in favor of the renewal stating that his department had open communication with The Pondy and that there were no issues with the business. Barb Hladik from The Pondy appeared to answer trustee questions. The trustees approved the license renewal.
The trustees also approved a resolution refunding administrative fees already paid by the golf course and waiving remaining 2018 fees. Typically the town charges the golf course a $1,000 monthly fee for administrative services but this year the fees will be waived because according to the resolution "the golf course has faced financial difficulties in 2018 due to the extreme drought."
The trustees were notified of the resignation from the Historical Preservation Board of longtime member Ronn Brewer. Trustee Al Smith who serves on the historical board reluctantly accepted Brewer's resignation. Smith praised Brewer as "a pillar of the group" who has been instrumental in conducting the detailed research needed to qualify town buildings for historic site designation. Trustee Ray Hanson agreed, saying Brewer's service has been invaluable. Hanson suggested doing something special to recognize Brewer's service and the other trustees agreed to plan a future recognition.
In her treasurer's report, Trustee Patricia Michael noted that the town's investment income has increased and sales tax collection is also up by 6.76 percent over the previous year to date.
Bruce Hovde representing the Cedaredge Area Chamber of Commerce provided a schedule of events proposed for the 2018 AppleFest. The event will run from Oct. 4-7. Already 209 booths are confirmed of which twenty-five are food vendors. Vendors have until Aug. 31 to apply for space at current rates. After that the space rental rate increases by $125. Past estimates have placed AppleFest crowds as high as 20,000. This year organizers will employ a drone to take publicity photos and get better estimates of crowd size. A new event this year will be a vendor appreciation night held on Friday, Oct. 5, at the beer garden.
Constituents Jim and Gretchen Atkinson asked for an update on the drought and water situation. Administrator Brinck responded that the town is seeing good conservation on the part of the community. Water usage and drought mitigation information will continue to be published in the town newsletter which is included in the town's monthly water/sewer bills. Mayor Gene Welch commented that the town has a limited amount of stored water and the trustees will continue to maintain reserves as the drought continues.