Town News

Catch Up with Council, December 8, 2020 – Sabatini Lot Update, Disposable Bag Discussion, Marina Storage and Rental Rates, Nonprofit Grants Discussion, Police Department Remodel, Unified Development Code, Cell Tower Installation, COVID Response

Summit County Preschool Update

Summit County Preschool, a nonprofit organization serving local working families by offering reduced tuition childcare services, presented a review of expenses, services, accomplishments, partnerships, losses incurred from the pandemic and fundraising efforts during 2020 to the Town Council. The Town of Frisco has supported the Preschool financially with $65,000 in yearly funding, as well as through various fundraising events during non-COVID times. The Preschool hopes to continue a partnership with the Town of Frisco. The Preschool proposed raising tuition to cover operating expenses and forming a coalition with the Town to help families afford the increased rates.

275 Granite Street Property (AKA “Sabatini Lot”) Update

The Town-owned vacant property at the corner of 3rd Avenue and Granite Street, commonly known as the “Sabatini Lot” and recently officially referred to as 275 Granite Street, has been used primarily for parking, snow storage, and occasionally for staging various Town construction projects. The adjacent parcel at 207 Granite Street is also vacant and is privately owned. 275 Granite has been identified as a potential location for workforce housing for several years by the Town with the possibility of developing it in concert with the adjacent parcel.

In November 2019, the owner of 207 Granite, Nathan Glassman, teamed with a development partner, Brynn Grey, approached the Town with a proposal to consider jointly developing the two vacant properties.  On June 9, 2020, Town Council was presented feedback from the public meetings held on January 13 and February 26, 2020 and requested the proposals be further developed between the Glassman team and Town staff.

 Negotiations regarding a joint project have not been successful, and after reviewing options, Council directed Town staff to issue a Request for Proposals (RFP) for the design and development of 275 Granite for affordable housing in the form of rental units and potentially a few “for sale” units.

Bag Ban Discussion

On August 27, 2019, Town Council approved Ordinance 19-14 to impose a single-use bag fee in order to reduce the use of disposable bags and reduce waste. Many disposable single-use bags are still being used and end up in landfills, litter the environment, use precious resources, block storm drains, and endanger wildlife.

Council directed Town staff to move forward with an ordinance to ban all plastic bags, retain a bag fee for paper bags, and provide no exemptions for thicker plastic bags. A ban on single-use plastic bags will address the environmental concerns, while still allowing businesses to offer their customers single-use paper bags that are recyclable and more biodegradable than plastic bags.

To stay consistent with Breckenridge and Dillon, any proposed ordinance would go into effect in September 2021 if passed by Frisco Town Council.

2021 Marina Boat Storage and Rental Rates

Boat rental and storage rates for the Frisco Bay Marina are evaluated by staff on an annual basis. Staff review end of year financials, feedback from customers and marina experts, and comparisons to other marinas in Colorado and in nearby states; and then propose rate changes for the following year, which are now being reviewed by Council. Council approved the following changes for 2021:

  • An increase in rental boat rates (7%-10% depending on type of boat), addition of weekend/holiday pricing (10% increase) to take account for the extreme demand for rental boats, and continuation a 5% discount for anyone who reserved online more than 24 hours in advance  
  • Slips – Moving to the industry standard of billing by the actual length versus registered length of the vessel for slips.
  • Moorings – Moving to the industry standard of charging by the overall length of the vessel instead of the registered length of the vessel for the mooring field.
  • Charging by square footage rather than length for dry, winter, and trailer storage. This will account for the boats/trailers taking up the most space on land and potentially create more turnover as some customers look for off-site options for boat storage.
  • Council approved continuing with the Frisco resident discount, currently at 10%.

Nonprofit Grants Discussion

This year has been particularly challenging for nonprofit organizations due to increased demand for services and/or less opportunities to raise funds due to the cancellation of many fundraising events. In response to annual Countywide grant requests from nonprofit organizations in Summit County, Frisco Town Council still opted to support many applicants while limiting discretionary fund allocations to a combined total of $70,600 and an additional $21,963 in in-kind donations to honor a more conservative 2021 budget. Council used criteria such as benefit to Frisco and Summit County residents, past allocations, an organization’s results from Frisco supported programs, and alignment with Town of Frisco Strategic Goals when considering if and how much funding to distribute to an organization.

Police Department Remodel Project 

Staff has revisited the Police Department remodel project after it was temporarily delayed as the Town Council had adjusted the 2020 budget to cope with COVID-19. Using architectural drawings previously approved by Council early in 2020, Council authorized staff to enter into a contract with TC3 Architects and O’Bryan Partnership Architects at a cost not to exceed $60,000 for the completion of 90% project drawings and associated bid documents for the Police Department Remodel Project. This will provide more accurate estimates of total cost of the remodel. This project has been identified as vital to providing quality core services and supporting the Police Department with facilities in Town Hall that better meet the needs of the Department and its employees.

First Reading Ordinance 20­23 – The Unified Development Code

Council approved on first reading Ordinance 2023. In order to support Town Council’s Strategic Plan goals related to implementing the Climate Action Plan and Water Efficiency Plan, staff has been pursuing building and land use code revisions in collaboration with a multi-jurisdictional task force headed by High Country Conservation Center (HC3). These updates will bring better consistency between the Sustainable Building Code update, adopted in April 14, 2020, and the land use code. These updates will also add another layer of sustainability to the land use code. HC3 and local planners reviewed general land use and development code requirements designed to promote sustainability through transportation, water efficiency, water quality, waste diversion, and solar readiness.

On June 9, 2020, a preliminary list of sustainable land use code amendment topics was presented to Council for consideration. At that meeting, the Council provided feedback and requested that staff solicit additional feedback on the code revisions from developers, builders, architects, and landscapers who may be impacted by the updates.

Staff presented the building professionals’ feedback to Council at the September 8, 2020 meeting where Town Council directed staff to develop draft code language in support of the sustainable land use code recommendations and hold a public hearing with the Planning Commission to review the same. Planning Commission held a public hearing on November 5, 2020 to consider the proposed text amendments to the Unified Development Code (“UDC”). The Planning Commissioners recommended approval of the proposed code amendments with four modifications regarding a soil survey for development on steep slopes, electric vehicle parking, snow storage in wetland areas, and dumpster enclosures for multi-family developments.

Lease Agreement with New Cingular Wireless for the Installation and Maintenance of Cell Antennas

After receiving significant feedback from residents about issues with AT&T cell service in Frisco this summer, Town staff contacted AT&T’s regional external affairs staff regarding these issues, resulting in AT&T returning to the Town with a plan to install antennas in two Frisco location: two at the Public Works building on School Road and two at the Summit Fire & EMS station on South 8th Avenue.

These installations will take pressure off of the macro tower on Dillon Dam Road, and subsequently, improve service in Frisco. These antennas could remain as long as needed, but could also be easily removed if needed.

AT&T would be responsible for the antennas’ electrical power consumption, connectivity/internet service, and maintenance.

Council approved the agreement on first reading. Community Development is already working with AT&T to have all the permitting in place so antenna installation may start immediately if the lease agreement is approved upon second reading. Permits for the installation of the antennas at the Fire Station on 8th Avenue (the second location for AT&T service improvement work) have already been issued, and installation timelines are dependent on AT&T.    

General Discussion / Action on COVID­19 Response

Staff provided an update on several bills signed by Governor Polis this week, which will provide some financial assistance to business and individuals including:

  • Summit County will receive a portion of funding from the State estimated at several hundred thousand dollars to distribute directly to restaurants and bars based on criteria such as annual revenue less than 2.5M per year and incurring a loss greater than 20% due to COVID-19. Up to 20 Frisco businesses could qualify.
  • Restaurants, bars, food trucks may keep State sales tax accrued for up to 4 months.
  • Utility payment assistance
  • Childcare assistance

FIRC- The Family Intercultural and Resource Center received 500 applications for residential rental assistance from across Summit County last week and has indicated that they currently have enough funding available to provide individual assistance through the end of the year to meet rental and food assistance needs.  In January, FIRC will return to the Town of Frisco with any additional funding requests; they currently still have available $67,000 in individual rental assistance funding from the Town of Frisco.

The State of Colorado is currently accepting a second round of applications for the Colorado Outdoor Dining Grant.

Discussion focused on how to best use the Town’s resources to help the community. Council directed staff to survey and research specific needs within the community in order to provide guidance on the next steps for business and individual assistance. Council has indicated that they will call special meetings as needed once staff can return with a needs assessment and assistance plan. Council noted that they want to strategically use funds to assist those businesses and individuals most impacted by the latest public health orders.