Town News

Catchup with Council, July 26, 2022 – Housing Strategies, Frisco’s Backyard, Afterschool Programming

Housing Strategies Discussion

Staff presented to Council an overview and updates of the Town’s housing programs, projects, and inventory and provided suggestions to improve certain elements of each, in order to increase access to workforce housing and help meet the goal of doubling the number of deed restricted properties within the Town by the end of 2027. 
As a result of that discussion, Council supported staff recommendations to:

  • Increase the Housing Helps program for the 2022 budget year to allow for future purchases. The Housing Helps program offers various options designed to create more affordable housing units in Frisco, such as buy-downs, down-payment assistance, deed-restriction purchases, ADU construction assistance, and partnering with Summit County on purchases, in order to convert existing market-rate properties into deed-restricted properties.
  • Expand  the Frisco Housing Locals program to open it up for businesses to participate. 
  • Granite Park:  Review financing options for the construction of Granite Park, a joint workforce housing project between the Town of Frisco and the Colorado Department of Transportation, located at 619 Granite Street.
  • 602 Galena: The Town will approve a $3 million supplemental appropriation  to cover the cost of purchasing 602 Galena Street. The budget will include an anticipated additional $1.5 million in partner contributions from the County.
  • Direct staff to prioritize the development of a workforce housing overlay zone to prepare for several affordable housing projects that could benefit from this in the near future.

Council directed staff to use data from the 2023 Housing Needs Assessment, once published, to move forward with a long-range housing plan, that would contemplate code revisions for accessory dwelling units (ADUs) and new housing concepts, and map out the future of new workforce housing development projects such as 275 Granite Street and 810 Pitkin/406 S 8th Ave.

Update on the USFS Proposal for Resource Management and NEPA Review in Frisco’s Backyard

On March 22, 2022, Town Council approved a contract with SE Group to develop a proposal for trail and resource management in the area known as Frisco’s Backyard for US Forest Service (USFS) consideration. This area encompasses the land located generally south of Frisco, comprised of Mount Royal, Miners Creek, Rainbow Lake, Ophir Mountain, and Gold Hill. While outside of town limits, these National Forest (NFS) lands are a very important community recreation destination. The proposal will include goals for wildfire fuel reduction and trail improvements among other resource management opportunities. The consultant team presented an overview of the proposal process, the status of the proposal, anticipated USFS environment review process, and costs. Of note: 

  • The proposal has evolved to expanding fuels reduction work from 230 acres to 1200 acres in order to incorporate existing firebreaks and fuel treatments, mitigate areas with high sources of ignition, and to modify treatments based on preliminary modeled fire intensity. The evolved proposal also calls for evaluating social trails by use, redundancy, and elk management areas.
  • SE group is currently performing field studies and is working with the White River National Forest to refine the proposal. 
  • SE Group plans to engage the public in a comment process in October through November 2022. 
  • SE Group plans to revisit cost estimates and strategies for larger treatment areas with Council at a later time.

Council continued their support for the proposal and the continued planning involved in order to improve the ecosystem health, reduce hazardous fuels and risk of wildfire, and create more sustainable recreation opportunities in the Backyard area.

Afterschool Programming

In response to shortage of afterschool childcare and programming partially caused by the abrupt closure of Keystone Science School’s CATCH program in the spring of 2022, Council approved the launch of a full-time afterschool program at Frisco Elementary starting this upcoming school year. 
A survey emailed to Frisco Elementary School parents on June 6, 2022, revealed that families are generally looking for after school care five days per week throughout the school year. With Council’s support, the Town of Frisco will run a full-time after school program starting on August 18, 2022 (first day of elementary school) and running through June 1, 2023 (last day of elementary school). The majority of the session-based afterschool programs previously operated by the Town will be rolled into the new Frisco Afterschool Fun Club program.

Program Details:

  •  Programming will run five days per week out of Frisco Elementary School or the Frisco Nordic Center and Day Lodge, based on the season. 
  • Programs will run from 3:55pm-5:30pm on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays, and from 3:05pm-5:30pm on Wednesdays.
  • The program will include a mix of outdoor sports/activities, educational activities, and art. 
  • The program capacity will start with  20 kids per day, with the potential to increase capacity pending the hiring of additional staff.   
  • The program cost is $15 per day per child on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays, and $20 per day per child on Wednesdays to account for early release. The Town will also  offer a scholarship option for the program, using the free and reduced lunch program currently in place by the school district.
  • The Little Vikings Nordic ski program will remain session-based due to the collaboration with the Summit Nordic Ski Club and the success of this program over the years. 
  • If the Town is able to secure staffing, additional session-based programs may be added throughout the year. 

Registration for the afterschool program is anticipated to  open on August 3, 2022, with afterschool programs starting on the first day of school, August 18, 2022. Staff will also immediately begin the recruitment process for two additional part-time, year-round staff to assist with running the programs. Registration and scholarship information will be communicated as it becomes available. 

Amendments to Purchasing Code – Second Reading

Town Council adopted on second reading an ordinance to amend the Town purchasing code. The revisions will enable the Town of Frisco to enter into purchasing cooperatives in order to access lower pricing options than the Town could access on its own.
It is common practice for smaller, local governments, to take advantage of pricing offered to larger scale organizations, such as the State of Colorado, by entering into agreements with lead agencies, which handle the bidding and contract processes for goods and services for use by all participating members. This change does not negate Town’s current ability to manage its own purchasing processes; rather it adds options to enter into purchasing agreements that are advantageous to the Town.
The code amendments in this ordinance will also raise the purchasing limits for each level of accountability required: department manager’s discretion, required verbal quote, required written quote, and required competitive bids. The current limits have been in place since adoption in July 2007, and the new limits were determined using the Bureau of Labor Statistics CPI Inflation Calculator.

Frisco Town Council Meetings: Ways to Participate

Frisco Town Council meetings are available to view via Zoom and YouTube, and are also held in person to make Town Council meetings easier to access for everyone.

The public can provide comment during meetings via Zoom or in person (not YouTube), and a public comment period will be available at 7:00pm; during the consideration of ordinances; and at the discretion of Town Council during work session items, which are discussions that don’t require a formal vote by Town Council and do not require public comment.

Again, this hybrid approach is intended to make Town Council meetings more accessible, and meeting recordings will typically also be made available the day after a meeting in the meeting archive with agenda topics bookmarked to the discussions in the video.