Sales tax collections in Crested Butte are starting off the year where 2014 left off. January figures show sales tax in town was up 17.5 percent. The biggest category increase percentage-wise was in lodging, which is dominated by VRBO-type short-term rentals. “We just keep rolling,” admitted town finance director Lois Rozman.
Councilman Jim Schmidt said it appeared to him that Martin Luther King weekend was big in terms of tourist numbers but everything else was a typical January. Schmidt apparently doesn’t ski the weekends.
Rozman said the town seems to track in line with the Mountain Express bus service numbers. February ridership, by the way, is flat with last year.
In a déjà vu but change-the-name scenario, councilperson Schmidt this meeting (as opposed to Chris Ladoulis last meeting) asked about obtaining weekly sales tax numbers. Rozman again explained the town has asked local businesses for the weekly numbers for a year and a half and less than a half-dozen businesses supply those numbers. Rozman said the town is considering some software that might help delineate weeks. That software would mandate businesses to file reports and be penalized if they didn’t. The software is also not cheap, she said.
The council hired a company to act as the consultants about the old landfill and other environmental issues in the proposed Slate River Annexation. Wright Water Engineers will work for the town but be paid by the developers.
Town attorney John Belkin said with the hiring of the consultants, a pre-annexation agreement should come to the council within the next month. “We might have it for the next meeting but that would be pushing it,” he said. “I’d say expect something in early April.”
The council can still freely talk about the concept of the annexation to the public but once a formal application is submitted, the process shifts to a so-called quasi-judicial proceeding and the council will be prohibited from discussing their views with the proponents or the public except in public meetings. There is still some time to talk to your council representative about the annexation idea.
Electric car charger
Town Building and Zoning director (and current building inspector) Bob Gillie told the council the Gunnison Country Electric Association has asked if the council would allow an electric car charging station at the Four-way Stop. He said the station would take up two current parking spaces. The council was in favor of writing a letter of support for a grant being pursued by the GCEA for the station.
Moving away from LEED certification for Anthracite Place
Council set for public hearing an ordinance amending the town code to allow an Enterprise Green Certification in lieu of Leadership in Environmental Design (LEED) for buildings of more than 20,000 square feet. That new rule adjustment will be allowed for the proposed affordable housing rental complex slated to start construction this spring next to True Value. It is thought the two certifications are similar but the LEED certification is much more expensive.