LARIMER COUNTY PLANNING COMMISSION

Minutes of March 18, 2015

 

The Larimer County Planning Commission met in a regular session on Wednesday, March 18, 2015, at 6:30 p.m. in the Hearing Room.  Commissioners’ Cox, Gerrard, Glick, Jensen, and Miller were present.  Commissioners Christman, Dougherty, and Zitt were absent.  Commissioner Wallace presided as Chairman.  Also present were Terry Gilbert, Community Development Division Director, Matt Lafferty, Principle Planner, Rob Helmick, Senior Planner, Michael Whitley, Planner II, Karin Madson, Planner II, Brenda Gimeson, Planner II, Traci Shambo, Engineering Department, Doug Ryan, Health Department, and Jill Wilson, Recording Secretary. 

 

The Planning Commission went on a site visit to Martin Conservation Development and Choice Organics Manufacture License.

 

COMMENTS BY THE PUBLIC REGARDING THE COUNTY LAND USE CODE: 

None

 

COMMENTS BY THE PUBLIC REGARDING OTHER RELEVANT LAND USE MATTERS NOT ON THE AGENDA:  

None.

 

APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES FOR THE FEBRUARY 18, 2015 MEETING:   MOTION by Commissioner Cox to approve the minutes, seconded by Commissioner Miller.  This received unanimous voice approval.

 

AMENDMENTS TO THE AGENDA:

A member of the public asked that the Item #3Martin Conservation Development be moved off the consent agenda.

 

Commissioner Glick moved to move Item #5 Choice Organics Manufacture License to the consent agenda, seconded by Commissioner Miller.

 

CONSENT ITEMS:

 

ITEM #1  AMENDMENTS TO THE LARIMER COUNTY LAND USE CODE – SECTON 5.8.5.B.1.a  #14-CA0151:   Ms. Gimeson provided background information on the request to modify Section 5.8.5.B.1.a of the Rural Land Use Process to remove the membership requirements of the Rural Land Use Advisory Board and place those requirements into the By-laws instead.

 

DISCUSSION:

Commissioner Cox moved that the Planning Commission adopt the following Resolution:

 

BE IT RESOLVED that the Planning Commission recommend to the Board of County Commissioners approval of Amendments to the Larimer County Land Use Code, Section 5.8.1.B.1.a, file #14-CA0151 , as follow:

 

 

 

 

 

Section 5.8.5. Creation of rural land use center.

 

1. The RLUC's purpose is to promote the purposes and objectives of the Larimer County Rural Land Use Process through negotiation. The following persons and groups will comprise the RLUC:

a. Rural land use advisory board (RLUAB): The county commissioners will appoint the RLUAB. The RLUAB will be comprised of nine members who will serve three-year staggered terms. Appointments to the RLUAB by the board of county commissioners will represent a cross section of the county .

a. The Rural Land Use Advisory Board (RLUAB):

(1) Will make recommendations to the county commissioners regarding changes to the rural land use process.

(2) Will evaluate and provide a recommendation to the county commissioners regarding proposed preliminary rural land plans. RLUAB members are strongly encouraged to visit the landowner's property prior to the neighborhood meeting in order to provide input to the director of the RLUC at this early stage in the process.

(3) Will promote the principles, purposes, and objectives of the rural land use process.

 

Commissioner Glick seconded the Motion.

 

Commissioners’ Cox, Gerrard, Glick, Jensen, Miller, and Chairman Wallace voted in favor of the Motion.

 

MOTION PASSED:  6-0

 

ITEM #2  AMENDMENTS TO THE LARIMER COUNTY LAND USE CODE – SECTON 4  #14-CA0153:   Ms. Madson provided background information on the request to add a new Section 4.9.1.C. for setbacks adjacent to annexed roads and to add a new Section 4.6.7. Administrative Variance for properties adjacent to annexed roads.

 

DISCUSSION:

Commissioner Cox moved that the Planning Commission adopt the following Resolution:

 

BE IT RESOLVED that the Planning Commission recommend to the Board of County Commissioners approval of Amendments to the Larimer County Land Use Code, Section 4, file #14-CA0153 , as follow:

 

1.    Create a new Section 4.9.1.C. (Setbacks from highways, county roads, and all other streets and roads) and renumber the balance of the section as follows:

 

C. Annexed Roads. Properties in unincorporated Larimer County along a road that has been annexed and is under the jurisdiction of a municipality have the option of utilizing the County required setbacks based on the most recent county road classification (prior to annexation) or requesting an administrative variance to allow a setback consistent with the required setback from the adjacent jurisdiction. 

 

 

 

2.     Add a new Section 4.6.7. Administrative Variance as follows:

 

E. The planning director is hereby authorized to approve administrative variances from the county road setback requirements listed in section 4.9.1. or the applicable zoning district, for properties in unincorporated Larimer County along a road or street that has been annexed and is under the jurisdiction of another municipality, subject to the following criteria:

 

1.    Written documentation has been provided to the planning department indicating that the proposed structure will meet the setback requirements applicable within the jurisdiction in which the road is located.

 

2.    The review criteria for a setback variance in section 4.6.3 are met or determined to be inapplicable.

 

Commissioner Glick seconded the Motion.

 

Commissioners’ Cox, Gerrard, Glick, Jensen, Miller, and Chairman Wallace voted in favor of the Motion.

 

MOTION PASSED:  6-0

 

ITEM #5 CHOICE ORGANICS MANUFACTURE LICENSE #15-G0283:   Mr. Whitley provided background information on the request for a Retail Marijuana Products Manufacturing Facility License at the property located at 813 Smithfield Drive, Unit D, Fort Collins, which was located approximately 1,200 feet southwest of the intersection of Mulberry Street & I-25.  He explained that Choice Organics had received Special Review approval from the Board of County Commissioners on October 18, 2010 to operate a Medical Marijuana Dispensary & a Medical Marijuana Grow Operation within Units A & B of the building.  Then in March 2014, the Board of County Commissioners approved a Retail Marijuana Store License and a Retail Marijuana Cultivation Facility License for Units C & D.   He explained that issuance of a Retail Marijuana Products Manufacturing License would permit Choice Organics to manufacture marijuana-infused oils, topical products and tinctures. 

 

Commissioner Wallace asked about additional requirements by the Health, Water, and Fire Departments.

 

Mr. Whitley stated that those concerns were addressed in the conditions of approval.

 

DISCUSSION:

Commissioner Glick moved that the Planning Commission adopt the following Resolution:

 

BE IT RESOLVED that the Planning Commission recommend to the Board of County Commissioners approval of the Choice Organics Manufacture License, file #15-G0283, for the property described on “Exhibit B” to the minutes, subject to the following conditions:

 

 

 

1.    The Retail Marijuana Products Manufacturing Facility shall be operated in full compliance with all licensing requirements, regulations and standards of the State of Colorado Department of Revenue Marijuana Enforcement Division.

 

2.     The Retail Marijuana Products Manufacturing Facility shall be operated in full compliance with all licensing requirements, regulations and standards of the Larimer County Resolution For Licensure of Retail Marijuana Establishments

 

3.    All Poudre Fire Authority, East Larimer County Water District, Larimer County Building Department and Larimer County Department of Health and Environment questions and concerns regarding the manufacturing process, the systems and equipment used, the quantities of the alcohol involved and how emissions are managed must be adequately addressed by the applicants and all required permits and inspection approvals must be obtained prior to commencement of operations of the Retail Marijuana Products Manufacturing Facility.

 

Commissioner Miller seconded the Motion.

 

Commissioners’ Glick, Miller, and Chairman Wallace voted in favor of the Motion.

 

Commissioners’ Gerrard and Jensen voted against the Motion.

 

Commissioner Cox abstained.

 

MOTION PASSED:  3-2

 

ITEMS:

 

ITEM #3 MARTIN COSERVATION DEVELOPMENT #14-S3203:   Mr. Helmick provided background information on the request for a Preliminary Plat of a Conservation Development to subdivide 60.00 acres into a 48-acre residual lot with four, 2-acre lots, including an existing residence and a 4-acre lot, which was located o n the east side of County Road 9, North of County Road 70 and east of I-25, northwest of Wellington.  He noted that no comments had been received from the public.  He explained that there was a WAPA power line located on the property that caused some constraints to the property. 

 

PUBLIC TESTIMONY:

Cindy McCollum, owned the property to the south of the proposal.  She explained that she bought her property in 1999 in order to have a livestock operation.  Her concern was that the proposal was to have lots and houses developed right by her property line and people that usual bought smaller lot acreages did not have intentions of having animals and then were sometimes offended by other people that did due to the smell, etc..  She wished that the houses would be put on the north side of the existing house.  She pointed out that she had observed how new development could impact historic operations due to the new neighbor(s) not liking what was occurring around them.

 

Commissioner Miller asked how many lots abutted the neighbor’s property.

 

Mr. Helmick explained one.

 

Jared Martin, stated that he was happy to answer any questions.

 

DISCUSSION:

Commissioner Jensen supported the development.

 

Commissioner Cox moved that the Planning Commission adopt the following Resolution:

 

BE IT RESOLVED that the Planning Commission recommend to the Board of County Commissioners approval of the Martin Conservation Development, file #14-S3203, for the property described on “Exhibit A” to the minutes, subject to the following conditions:

 

1.   The Final Plat shall be consistent with the approved preliminary plat and with the information contained in the MARTIN CONSERVATION DEVELOPMENT PRELIMINARY PLAT File # 14-S3203 except as modified by the conditions of approval or agreement of the County and applicant.  The applicant shall be subject to all other verbal or written representations and commitments of record for the MARTIN CONSERVATION DEVELOPMENT PRELIMINARY PLAT.

 

2.   The following fees shall be collected at building permit issuance for new single-family dwellings:  Poudre School District school fee, Larimer County fees for County and Regional Transportation Capital Expansion, and Larimer County Regional and Community Park Fees (in lieu of dedication).  The fee amount that is current at the time of building permit application shall apply. 

 

3.   All new residential structures shall be fire sprinkled.

 

4.   All habitable structures will require an engineered foundation system. Such engineered foundation system designs shall be based upon a site specific soils investigation.  The lowest habitable floor level (basement) shall not be less than 3 feet from the seasonal high water table.  Mechanical methods proposed to reduce the ground water level, unless it is a response after construction, must be proposed on a development wide basis.

 

5.   Passive radon mitigation measures shall be included in construction of residential structures on these lots.  The results of a radon detection test conducted in new dwellings once the structure is enclosed but prior to issuance of a certificate of occupancy shall be submitted to the Building Department.  As an alternative, a builder may present a prepaid receipt from a radon tester which specifies that a test will be done within 30 days.  A permanent certificate of occupancy can be issued when the prepaid receipt is submitted.

 

Commissioner Glick seconded the Motion.

 

Commissioners’ Cox, Gerrard, Glick, Jensen, Miller, and Chairman Wallace voted in favor of the Motion.

 

MOTION PASSED:  6-0

 

ITEM #4  AMENDMENTS TO THE LARIMER COUNTY LAND USE CODE – SECTON 14  #14-CA0152:   Mr. Helmick provided background information on the request to modify Section 14.0 - Areas and Activities of State Interest to include Section 14.4 designation for water storage reservoirs, Section 14.5 exemption for irrigation reservoirs, Section 14.8 a section for Memorandum of Understanding, and a change to the Section 14.10.D. Review Criteria.  He noted that extensive meetings that had occurred for the last several years regarding the topic.  He provided a copy of an email from Commissioner Gerrard, which suggested adding language excluding mutually owned irrigation companies.

 

PUBLIC TESTIMONY:

Carol Webb, City of Fort Collins, stated that they had an interest in the proposed regulations as they were a municipal water provider and owned and operated various water rights and structures including water treatment facilities, distribution systems, and water storage reservoirs.  The City of Fort Collins believed that the proposed regulations added an additional layer of regulations that were not necessary as building and modifying water reservoirs was already subject to several State and Federal regulations.  In addition, many financial recourses were provided with the current permitting processes, and the additional cost and time for an additional layer of regulations was of significant concern.  She also noted that the criteria under which a permit would be granted were unclear, and it was difficult to discern exactly what an applicant would need to demonstrate in order to know that they would be entitled to a permit.  She pointed that the City of Fort Collins had provided comments regarding the specific language, some of which had been addressed and some not addressed.  For example, it was still unclear how the proposed regulations might apply to water reservoirs in which the water was utilized for numerous purposes.  She stated that the City of Fort Collins had reached out to Mr. Helmick regarding entering into an Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) regarding a reservoir project.

 

Commissioners Cox pointed out the alternative of a Memo of Understanding (MOU).  She asked if that was not sufficient.

 

Ms. Webb stated that it was a good option; however, it just depended on what the requirements would be for the IGA (Memo of Understanding).

 

Commissioner Gerrard asked for an example of the other mentioned regulations/permits that had to be obtained.

 

Ms. Webb noted that environmental concerns had to be addressed with the 404 permit, which would also be required through the 1041 permit.

 

Steve Anderson, Handy Ditch Company, explained the maintenance of the ditches.  He asked how the change would affect the ability to do emergency or regular maintenance.

 

Mr. Helmick explained that unless the maintenance or other activity was specifically considered a water reservoir for domestic purposes then it would have no impact on the operations of the Handy Ditch.  He stated that the regulations were intended to impact and direct the review to the water storage vessel intended for domestic use. 

 

 

 

 

Mr. Anderson pointed out that most ditch companies ran some form of domestic water.  He was concerned that public concerns regarding maintenance could force the ditch company to have to go through the process.

 

Mr. Helmick stated that if a maintenance activity were to expand a water storage reservoir over the 50 acres (and/or decree/high water line) then there might be an issue.  However, any activity within the ditch system would not be affected by these regulations.  He explained that a permit would only be required if it was an expansion of the water storage area that resulted in a surface area in excess of 50 acres. 

 

Mr. Anderson wanted to make sure that the regulations were clear on what was required so in the future there would not be anything left up to interpretation.

 

Bill Markham, Home Supply Ditch,   spoke about the domestic water that was ran through the ditches into the towns, which were then taken out to their storage areas to be treated.  He explained that when there was excess the water was then rented to all the property owners along the ditch for agricultural purposes.

 

DISCUSSION:

Mr. Helmick noted that the IGA relieved one of going through the 1041 process; however, during the IGA process it must be shown that requirements of Section 14 had been met.  He stated that he was sympathetic to the ditch company concerns and was willing to add language to clarify the intent.  For example, language could be added that addressed that the regulations were not meant to be applied to the day to day operations of the mainline and subsidiary system of the irrigation company such as systems, head gates, etc.

 

Commissioner Gerrard pointed out that the ditch companies could not enter into a MOU/IGA because they were private entities. 

 

Mr. Helmick believed that if the ditch company was considered a corporation then it could enter into an IGA with the county.

 

Commissioner Gerrard explained that there were no irrigation companies that were exclusively irrigation anymore.  Almost every irrigation company had some sort of domestic water in it.  He had a concern that an attorney for a homeowners association or homeowner could argue that anything not done historically since the homeowner’s association/homeowner had acquired the property was considered an expansion.  The ditch company would then have to spend time and money to try to prove that decree.  He also explained that some ditches were decreed by high water, volume, or both. 

 

Commissioner Miller stated that he did not have a problem with the current wording of the regulations.  He felt that the regulations allowed the citizens an opportunity to voice their concerns.

 

Commissioner Glick felt that it was important to clarify the language so it was understood what the intent of the regulation was.

 

 

 

Mr. Lafferty confirmed that the concerns raised were in regard to the ditch laterals being considered a storage vessel.  He asked if it would be helpful to state that the irrigation delivery system of the ditch laterals were not considered to be a water storage facility and therefore were excluded from the regulation.

 

Commissioner Gerrard replied yes.

 

Commissioner Wallace pointed out that areas around a reservoir might impact a ditch that currently existed.   She agreed that some of the language was gray and could be up for interpretation.

 

Commissioner Jensen agreed with the language proposed by Commissioner Gerrard in his email.

 

Commissioner Wallace stated that she was for the exclusion of maintenance on delivery systems but was against adding the language regarding a mutual ditch company as she felt that it was not clear enough.  She felt that the more exclusive the language the less opportunity for public input in the process.

 

Commissioner Cox concurred and felt that including language for mutually owned irrigation companies in the regulations would provide a loop hole and may preclude what the intent of the regulation was.

 

Commissioner Glick concurred that mutual irrigation companies should not be excluded from the regulations but the language should be clarified regarding maintenance of distribution systems so a ditch was not considered a reservoir.

 

Commissioner Cox moved that the Planning Commission adopt the following Resolution:

 

BE IT RESOLVED that the Planning Commission recommend to the Board of County Commissioners approval of Amendments to the Larimer County Land Use Code, Section 14, file #14-CA0152, as follows with the modification to Section 2 to add an exemption written by staff regarding ditch laterals/carriers, the area around,  and the maintenance of and around those laterals:

 

1.    Add a new designation to Section 14.4 Designated Matters of State Interest and renumber the balance of the section:

 

K.    Site selection and construction of a new Water Storage Reservoir or expansion of an existing Water Storage Reservoir resulting in a surface area at high water line in excess of 50 acres, natural or manmade, used for the storage, regulation and/or control of water for human consumption or domestic use and excluding a Water Storage Reservoir used exclusively for irrigation .   A Water Storage Reservoir shall also include all appurtenant uses, structures and facilities, roads, parks, parking, trails and other uses which are developed as part of the Water Storage Reservoir.

 

 

 

 

 

K L .       Siting and development of any solar energy power plant, including solar energy collectors, power generation facilities, facilities for storing and transforming energy and other appurtenant facilities, that together disturb an area greater than five acres, or any addition thereto that expands the disturbed area. This designation shall not include roof mounted solar systems located on existing permitted principal and accessory buildings.

 

2.    Add a new exemption to Section 14.5.B. Specific exemptions and renumber the balance of the section:

 

3.            A reservoir used exclusively for irrigation is not considered to be a Water Storage Reservoir.

4 . 3.      An entity that has an approved intergovernmental agreement with the county specific to the project in question, as provided for in Section 14.8 below.

 

3.    Add a new section to Section 14.8.A. Intergovernmental Agreements:

5.   Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).  The county and the applicant shall execute a Memorandum of Understanding, prior to engaging in the process of forming an intergovernmental agreement, the purpose of which is:

a.   To acknowledge the intent of the parties to begin joint discussions which may result in the approval of an intergovernmental agreement.

b.   Establish the timeframe for those discussions and any significant milestones agreed upon.

c.   Establish the timeframe for review, public input and public hearing before the county commissioners.

 

4.    Modify Section 14.10.D.3. and 4. as follows:

 

3.    The proposal conforms with adopted county standards, review criteria and mitigation requirements concerning environmental impacts, including but not limited to those contained in Section 8 of this Code.

 

4.    The proposal will not have a significant adverse affect on or will adequately mitigate significant adverse affects on the land or its natural resources, on which the proposal is situated and on lands adjacent to the proposal.

 

Commissioner Glick seconded the Motion.

 

Commissioners’ Cox, Glick, Jensen, Miller, Zitti and Chairman Wallace voted in favor of the Motion.

 

Commissioner Gerrard voted against the Motion.

 

MOTION PASSED:  5-1

 

 

REPORT FROM STAFF:  Mr. Lafferty reminded the Commission of their upcoming meetings. 

 

ADJOURNMENT:   There being no further business, the hearing adjourned at 7:55 p.m.

 

 

 

These minutes constitute the Resolution of the Larimer County Planning Commission for the recommendations contained herein which are hereby certified to the Larimer County Board of Commissioners.

 

 

_______________________________                      ______________________________

Nancy Wallace, Chairman                                          Mina Cox, Secretary

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

EXHIBIT A 

 

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A parcel of land situate in the Northwest 1/4 of Section 33, Township 10 North, Range 68 West of the 6th P.M., County of Larimer, State of Colorado, being more particularly

described as follows: Considering the East line of the Northeast 1/4 of said Section as bearing south 00 degrees 00 minutes 00 seconds West and with all bearings contained

herein relative thereto: Commencing at the Northeast corner of said Section, thence along the North line of said Section North 88 degrees 28 minutes 47 seconds West a distance of 4239.53 feet to the Point of Beginning; thence continuing along said North line North 88 degrees 28 minutes 47 seconds West a distance of 1047.58 feet more or less to the Northwest corner of said Section; thence along West line of said Northwest 1/4 south 00 degrees 23 minutes 36 seconds East a distance of 2631.40 more or less the West 1/4 corner of said Section; thence along the South line of said Northwest 1/4 South 87 degrees 53 minutes 05 seconds East a distance of 1030.05 thence North 00 degrees 00 minutes 16 seconds West a distance of 2641.56 feet to the True Point of Beginning, County of Larimer, State of Colorado

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

EXHIBIT B

 

 

Lot 24, Smithfield