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Tiny houses and marijuana regs on Orchard City radar

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The trustees present at the Sept. 5 workshop for Orchard City were eager to tackle the agenda and get to work on various matters. First, they reviewed the ordinance for regulating the cultivation and possession of marijuana. This ordinance would allow citizens to possess 12 marijuana plants per resident, instead of many. In addition it has other regulations surrounding marijuana cultivation in Orchard City.

This ordinance has been in the works for quite some time. Melissa Oelke, town clerk, clarified that because the trustees decided they wanted to be more in depth in the ordinance they took more time to review and add to it. The ordinance is set to be sent to the town's attorney and be finalized next month.

Following, the group approved a softball lease agreement. The last few seasons Orchard City has rented out the park's Field of Dreams for the high school teams from Cedaredge, Hotchkiss and Paonia.

Trustee Doug Keller asked about raising the rental price. After some discussion it was decided that since the ladies are already into their season and using the field it would be best to not raise the price this year.

However, the trustees may look at overall rental pricings for the Orchard City Park at their upcoming budget retreat.

Tiny home regulations were discussed next. Currently the town's codes are from 2006. Oelke suggested that the town look at adding more formal regulations through an appendix.

Since the group agreed, the building inspector will be present at the next work session. He will also answer several questions from the trustees.

"We're starting to get a lot more inquiries about tiny homes on a regular basis," said Oelke.

Next, trustee Jan Gage directed the discussion toward the following agenda item by asking, "Why would we allow eight-foot fences?" Major Ken Volgamore gave examples of people requesting them for privacy, their gardens, or to keep out deer.

Gage's comment was in reference to the building permit fees for fences eight feet or taller. Since fences of this height require a building permit, the group discussed why there is a need to have a fee.

Ultimately they decided to continue this discussion with the building inspector at the next work session.

Elevate is wanting to provide video streaming (television) services to the area. Thus, they are wishing to create a franchise agreement with Orchard City. Oelke proposed a letter of engagement for legal council.

Because their current attorney is a conflict of interest in the matter, it was suggested that Bo Nerlin advise them. He is also advising other Delta County towns with their Elevate franchise agreements.

Ultimately they decided to put the letter of engagement on the agenda for approval at the town hall meeting Sept. 12.

Before concluding with various comments the trustees evaluated the prospect of investing with COLOTRUST. After discussing why this would be a safe and good option, the group decided to go with the investment. The amount will be determined after discussion with the financial committee.

Oelke said the town will keep some investments with their current accounts for future security.

Barring special meetings or holidays, the Orchard City board of trustees meets for a work session on the first Wednesday of each month and for a regular meeting on the second Wednesday. Meetings are held at 7 p.m. at 9661 2100 Road in Austin. The public is encouraged to attend.

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Surface Creek
marijuana, Orchard City, tiny houses
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