Town Board approves Heron Pointe, Lot 2, gets first look at 2019 budget

By Rudy Hemmann

The Surveyor

At the Berthoud Board of Trustee meeting held Nov. 13, 2018 the applicants for Lot 2 of the Heron Pointe development offered several updates and changes from the plan which was brought forward at the board meeting held Oct. 23, 2018.

The Heron Pointe Lot 2 proposal is to be built on an approximately 10.85-acre tract bounded on the north by Larimer County Road (LCR) 14, on the west and south by Berthoud Parkway and on the east by LCR 15 H.

Steve Steinbicker, acting as agent for Heron Pointe, LLC (Bob Dehn), had, at the earlier meeting, submitted a request for approval of a preliminary plat which would allow up to five commercial tracts on portions of the property to the east of, and adjacent to, the Parkway, along with one multi-family lot for 142 multi-family units (6-plex and 8-plex units) on the eastern portion of the property. (Immediately to the west, across the Parkway, is the initial phase of the Heron Pointe project, which is a block of multi-family units.)  

Curt Freese, Community Development Director for the town, opened the item (on Nov. 13) by addressing some of the major concerns voiced by the citizens as well as the board members at the Oct. 23 meeting. He noted a study of traffic within the roundabout as well as approaches to it, in both northbound and southbound directions of the Parkway had been done by the town’s traffic engineer, John Seyer, who offered suggestions to mitigate issues with the roundabout. (These include: speeding in the roundabout and passing on the right.) A public hearing had been opened during the earlier meeting and was continued to the Tuesday evening session to give the applicants time to address issues with the plan presented, and to give the board members time to study the proposal.

Reasons, from the meeting of Oct. 23, for delaying approval of the original plan were many. Chief among these were citizen complaints during the public hearing (of the Oct. 23 meeting) regarding too high a density, not only for the multi-family section of the proposal, but also in the multi-family residential section of the Heron Pointe development already built in the eastern portion of the subdivision which lies west of the Parkway.

Complaints concerning pedestrians crossing the busy Berthoud Parkway at the roundabout. Residents of the development located in the western portion of the development were fearful that pedestrians attempting to cross the Parkway would be struck by vehicles speeding through the roundabout. (Residents to the west of the roundabout expect this issue to become more severe when a proposed swimming pool/community building is completed on a parcel located in the southeastern portion of the proposed plan.)

Also mentioned at the Oct. 23 meeting, and reiterated on Nov. 13, were issues of: overcrowding of Carrie Martin Elementary School which is to serve the Heron Pointe development, issues with density, commercial vehicles being allowed to be parked along the residential streets of the subdivision, problems getting the homeowners association to mow, or otherwise maintain, the large detention cell located at the southern tip of the development and issues with stormwater drainage, insufficient parking spaces in the existing apartment complex and also in the proposal.

Town staff met with Thompson School District Safe Routes to School staff member for students walking to Carrie Martin Elementary. The school district staffer wrote that she would highly recommend that the sidewalk along the south side of LCR 14 be continued from Heron Pointe Lot 2, westward across CR17 and continue west, along the north side of the large water tank property (which is owned by the City of Loveland) and continue west until reaching the Lissa Drive pedestrian crossing. The district representative added the school district was also in favor of student crossing signs and speed zone signs where appropriate.

Freese noted the town could require the developer of Heron Pointe to share in the cost of putting in a sidewalk, but it would not be fair to require the developer to pay the entire cost.

Concerns were raised about the possibility of garish commercial lighting emanating from the commercial tracts especially late at night.

Discussions of these and other issues went on for nearly 1.5 hours with Steinbicker and Freese taking turns at the podium to answer questions or offer clarifications about the proposal.

A motion to approve the Heron Pointe Preliminary Plat with the following conditions/recommendations was made seconded and approved by a split 4 to 3 vote. Trustees who voted against approval were Tim Hardy, Brian Laak and Maureen Dower.

Conditions/recommendations added by the trustees are:

With the changes agreed to by the applicant, such as adding storage rooms to the plat for use by residents of the multi-family units.

The sidewalk along the south side of LCR 14 should be made a priority and added as a share cost between the town and developer.

Improvements made to roundabout to mitigate the issues raised (speeding, passing on the right in roundabout and making it safer for use by pedestrians).

Making the storm water detention cells suitable for passive recreation.

Proposed 2019 Budget presentation

Town Administrator Chris Kirk led the trustees through a PowerPoint presentation which reviewed the 2019 budget. He gave the following as his concept of the approval process of the proposed budget for 2019.

Budget review (by the trustees) – Nov. 27, 2018.

Budget review (by the trustees – if necessary) – Dec. 4, 2018.

Budget and mill levy adoption – Dec. 11, 2018.

Kirk began with a review of priorities which had been discussed at a May 4, 2018 board retreat. Items discussed at the meeting were:

Promote a strong sense of community.

Create an environment that encourages economic prosperity.

Develop a healthy community.

Enhance public safety and resiliency.

Maintain public trust and accountability.

Be good stewards of community resources ad finances.

At a board work session held on Oct. 17, 2018 the following items were discussed.

Discuss priorities and goals for inclusion in (2019) budget.

Funds for priorities have been included in (2019) budget.

Kirk then addressed the preparation of the 2019 budget which comes in three successive steps; the first step is to fund the continuation of existing services, the second step is funding expansion of services due to growth or other issues (personnel, equipment, facilities, other process or service improvements) and the third step is funding for priorities included in the budget.

He noted that increases in General Fund revenue will likely come from:

Love’s Travel Center sales tax.

Recreational marijuana taxes.

Sales taxes from online purchases.

Possible decreases could be attributed to the following:

Availability of recreational marijuana creating a reduced demand for medical marijuana.

No more oil and gas lease bonuses are planned.

A total of 325 single-family building permits budgeted for 2019, down from an actual number of approximately 500 permits issued in 2018.

Kirk next led the trustees through expected revenue and expenditures for 2019, beginning with the General Fund and progressing through each fund in turn. The funds, other than the General Fund, addressed were Source of Supply (which encompasses mainly raw water infrastructure), the Water Fund, Wastewater Fund, Storm Water (Drainage) Fund, Park Development Fund, Park Land Dedication Fund, Public Facilities Fund, Conservation Trust Fund, Larimer County Open Space Fund, Cemetery Fund, BATS Fund, Road Impact Fund, The 1998 One Percent Sales Tax Fund, The 2019 One Percent Sales Tax Fund (Enacted by Berthoud voters November 6, 2018, for use by the town to fund recreation amenities.)

Use the following link to access the full PowerPoint document. (The PowerPoint document is part of the town board packet. It may take a few minutes before pages appear.)

Wastewater Plant UV Project award

An information sheet on this agenda item states that in the 2018 budget the town board approved funds to pursue needed repairs to the wastewater treatment facility. The projects to be completed included the removal and replacement of the UV (ultra-violet) equipment, improvements to the aeration system and other minor modifications.

Town Engineer Stephanie Brothers stated town staff in coordination with the consulting firm JVA placed a Request for Qualification letter with five selected water/wastewater contractors for a design-build CMAR (construction management at-risk) contract with 20 percent design plans for the wastewater plant UV project.

According to the Information Sheet, “The CMAR process allows the town to work with the contractor on design aspects of the project to narrow down the work to a guaranteed maximum price for construction. This allows the contractor to competitively bid aspects of the project to get the best price for portions of the project from all subcontractors and suppliers.”

Brothers reported it is staff’s recommendation the “CMAR for design be awarded to Moltz Construction, Inc based on the recommendation from JVA.”

Brothers stated the cost for the design phase would be about $100,000. She also explained the major costs for procuring and installation of equipment will take place in future months. 

Fee Waiver for Habitat Residence

Per a request from Habitat for Humanity regarding a fee waiver from certain building permit fees for a single-family residence located at 1748 N. Fourth, the trustees authorized town staff by motion and unanimous affirmative vote, to waive all fees except those for the water tap ($6,330) and wastewater tap ($5,500). The waiver will save Habitat for Humanity approximately $18,500.

The board ratified the appointment of Lorna Greene to the Berthoud Community Library Board of Trustees for a term to end Dec. 31, 2022.

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