Town News

Catchup with Council, June 28, 2022 – STR Overview, Audit Presentation, Paperless Billing, Town Hall Plaza Discussion

STR Overview and Strategies

At the June 14, 2022 Town Council work session, Town staff presented a general overview of short-term rentals in Frisco and Summit County and various strategies that could forward the goal of increasing availability of workforce housing. While short-term rentals in Frisco do not make up as big of a percentage of housing units as some surrounding areas, their ubiquity has been identified as a factor in the limited availability of affordable housing. At that meeting, Council directed staff to research inclusionary zoning, commercial linkage, a license cap, as well as defining short term license types, and to return to future meetings with more information on options that could help mitigate the impact of STRs on available housing.

At the this meeting, Council’s discussion centered on the possibility of implementing a short-term rental license cap, what the appropriate number of short term rentals in Frisco are in order to preserve community character, and how to define short term license types that would differentiate owner-occupied properties, investment properties, and primarily long-term rental properties that rent short-term on occasion . Staff presented three options for determining the cap number:

  • Percentage of total housing inventory, with owner-occupied licenses not included in the cap
  • Percentage of total housing inventory, less the deed-restricted homes, with owner-occupied licenses not included in the cap.
  • Total licenses issued as a ratio to deed-restricted homes.  

Council discussed the benefits and implications of each option, and Council continued to support a license cap, however directed staff to gather more data and conduct stakeholder interviews to better understand property uses and possible outcomes prior to implementing a license cap. Staff will bring additional information back to Council in August.

Audit Presentation

McMahon and Associates presented the Town’s Annual Comprehensive Financial Report to Council for the 2021 budget year. The Town received and unmodified or “clean” audit opinion, which is the highest level of auditor assurance available. Highlights of the presentation include:

  • The Town showed good overall financial health at end of 2021, which positions the Town well for current economic uncertainties.
    • The Town has a solid equity position with assets exceeding liabilities by $98M at year-end.
    • The Town has high liquidity with a strong asset base – total assets amount to $108.9M.
  • All governmental funds show strong fund balances, with a $7.4M net increase across all governmental funds for 2021.
    •  Both enterprise funds (Water & Marina) grew last year.
    • There were significant increases in sales taxes & real estate investment fees.
  • All funds remained within approved budgets.
  • The Town’s net position increased by $7.2M.
  • Revenues exceeded expectations by 3.1M.
  • Expenditures were 1.3M less than budgeted.

The Annual Comprehensive Financial Report for the year ended December 31, 2021 is already posted to the Town’s website, and the Town’s 2021 Community Scorecard will be posted in July.

Town Hall Plaza Discussion

Council directed staff to issue a request for proposals (RFP) for development of a Town Hall master plan that would provide options and direction for upcoming necessary improvements to the building and surrounding property, including the plaza on the west side of the building, as well as the Main Street-facing “front yard”. Currently, the Town allocates $20,000 – $30,000 annually to fix recurring concrete damage in the plaza, and staff has identified cracking glass on the roof portion of the atrium that has potential to pose safety hazards that will be very difficult and expensive to mitigate. A master plan will provide guidance and facilitate thoughtful discussion on how to best utilize the space, both within the building and in the surrounding property.

Amendments to Purchasing Code

Council supported Town Code revisions that would 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.

Council also supported amendments to the Town Code that will 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.

Water Bill and Paper Filing Fees

Council approved on second reading an ordinance to establish a fee for mailing paper water bills and processing paper tax/fee filings. The fees are intended to encourage customers to switch to electronic billing and tax/fee filing. The initial fee will be $5.00 per paper filing for tax or fee remittance forms, as well as for mailing paper water bills. There will be no fee around the method by which a customer pays their water bill. Currently, only about 30% of customers have opted for the electronic delivery of water bills, as well as remittance of taxes and disposable bag fees. The paper fees will offset the cost of staff processing and storing the paper documents.

In order to inform customers of the fees, communications will be sent to those that currently submit paper returns or receive paper water bills for six months before the ordinance goes into effect. Staff will also be available to assist any customers who may need assistance switching to electronic billing. Council and staff initially discussed these fees at the May 24, 2022 Council meeting.

New Liquor License on Main Street

Council approved a new restaurant liquor license for Warren Concepts Inc., doing business as Suga Moon, located at 121 E Main Street (formerly the location of the Log Cabin Cafe). The public hearing determined that the applicants followed the appropriate processes and procedures required for new liquor licenses. Suga Moon will be a Kansas City-style BBQ restaurant.

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.