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Minutes - Open Space - July 9, 2008 Approved 8/17/2008. OPEN SPACE BOARD OF TRUSTEES Minutes July 9, 2008 BOARD MEMBERS PRESENT Pat Billig John Putnam Allyn Feinberg STAFF PRESENT Mike Patton Jim Reeder Dean Paschall Ronda Romero Delani Wheeler Joe Mantione Ann Goodhart Cecil Fenio Steve Armstead Matt Jones Mike Orosel Marti Hill GUEST Matt Clausen, Pazks and Recreation Bill Mangle, ERO Resources CALL TO ORDER The meeting was called to order at 6:10 p.m. AGENDA ITEM 1-Approval of Minutes Cecil Fenio amended the minutes on page 4, Agenda Item 6, line 6 changing the word "hiker" to "runner". John Putnam moved that the minutes of June 11, 2008 be approved as amended. Pat Billig seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously. AGENDA ITEM 2 -Public Participation Larry MacDonnell invited staff and the Boazd to the Friends of Boulder's Open Space (FOBOS) picnic. He thanked staff for putting all the reseazch reports on the Web site so they are accessible to everyone and Whit Johnson, in pazticulaz, for sending him the link. Mr. MacDonnell acknowledged the work done by staff in preparation for the new trails in the Doudy Draw area but suggested the need for articulated objectives for the management of the land, trails and uses, otherwise it will be difficult to know if the trails are successful. He encouraged staff and the Board to consider that as a "next step". Mike Patton said it is staffls intention to have such objectives in place prior to opening the trails. He said many of the physical sustainability and visitor conflict issues are easier to identify than those associated with wildlife or the environment. Mike said that staff intends to identify the resource issues but is not as cleaz about what the standards will be. Monitoring will provide staff with information about impacts but staff cannot tell, in advance, what the response will be. He reminded the Board that the system is dynamic. Pat Billig agreed that ecological impacts are more difficult to determine. Pat said that she has recently been reading articles about Limits of Acceptable Change (LAC) and has Teamed that scientific advisory panels aze often used by agencies for management advice. Mike responded that the department has a strong connection with the university and often seeks peer input. Steve Armstead noted that when planning the monitoring projects, staff will do literature reviews and contact Colorado Division of Wildlife and Boulder County Parks and Open Space, for example, to see if those agencies have done similar studies. Staff does seek information from experts. Mike Patton said that the city has agreed that it would be beneficial to use a scientific advisory panel to advise council but such a panel has not yet been created. Matt Jones said that he recently attended an international conference that focused on the wildlife/human interface. He said that Open Space and Mountain Pazks (OSMP) is considered to be in the forefront of local governments using LAC as a management tool. Mike added AGENDA ITEM 1 PAGE 1 that he and Tim Seastedt, CU professor, have recently discussed opportunities for Tim and his colleagues at CU to assist OSMP. John Putnam also suggested that staff set atime - 6 months or a year - for a public check-in so that staff can share what it has learned. Mike agreed that this was a good idea and reminded the Board that the annual meeting, which is open to the public, also provides this kind of update. AGENDA ITEM 3 -Director's Update Steve Annstead reported that the Trailhead Leash Program expansion will begin in late July with a two-week period for education and outreach. Enforcement is expected to begin August 4. Jim Reeder announced upcoming trail closures. The Community Ditch trail will be closed due to a FRICO project and later in the summer there will be closures in Doudy Draw due to trail construction. US Highway 36 Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) Update Joe Mantione reported on the EIS process for transportation improvements along Highway 36 between Denver and Boulder. He said that the results of the review process indicated that none of the alternatives were acceptable. The committee then developed a new alternative that actually impacts fewer OSMP acres. There are still questions about funding the project so the next steps aze unclear. AGENDA ITEM 4 -Matters from the Board Allyn Feinberg said that she took the recommendations the Board made at its previous meeting to the Greenways Advisory Committee. John Putnam also attended in prepazation of taking on the responsibility of being the OSMP representative once Allyn leaves the Board. Allyn said that the conversation was productive and the result will be a budget that is laid out in a more understandable and usable format. She explained how the personnel and non-personnel expenses would be taken off the top and how funds would be distributed to the large projects and small habitat restoration projects. The position of maintenance coordinator, from Flood Utilities, will benefit from having oversight by the Greenways coordinator to help select small restoration projects and would oversee the crews doing the construction. She was convinced there would be some benefit to having that position. There will be enough money to do the small restoration projects. She thought the outcome of the meeting was successful. John Putnam commended staff on the new notices being used to educate the public about beaz activity. He added that they appear to be placed in more strategic locations also. AGENDA ITEM 5 -Public hearing and consideration of a recommendation to the City Council on the IBM Trail Connector Community and Environmental Assessment Process (CEAP) Matt Jones displayed the map showing the proposed connector in the regional context. The trail will function as an important connector for trails on both sides of the Diagonal Highway. Matt reviewed the ownership and management responsibilities of the lands involved along the preferred trail connector alignment. He described the alignment by segment, the issues associated with the different sections and the rationale for deciding on the particular alignment. This information is included in the memo. John Putnam suggested that since the cottonwood trees maybe coming down staff might consider moving the B3 segment a bit farther north to avoid bisecting that particular habitat. Matt responded that when making the recommendation for that segment only the current circumstances were considered. AGENDA ITEM 1 PAGE 2 Allyn Feinberg asked about the feasibility of getting an easement over the property if Tom Watson were no longer owned by Pazks & Recreation. Matt said that arrangements would then be made directly with IBM. He stressed that the deadline for the federal funds requires the project to move forwazd. Public Participation None Return to Board & Staff John Putnam said that an appropriate comment to include would be that the trail connector could have a positive impact on air quality because it might reduce car traffic. He asked if there were any plans, beyond mitigation by reseeding with native grasses, for a more expansive restoration project of this disturbed azea. Matt responded that the IPM crew has already visited the site to prepaze for mitigation but that any further restoration would need to be arranged with IBM since it is the owner of the property. John reiterated his suggestion to consider moving the B3 segment farther north due to the potential loss of the eagle perch in the cottonwoods which necessitated the current alignment recommendation. Allyn Feinberg asked how much of an increase in visitation is expected with the completion of the trail connector. Matt responded that there may be more traffic but not a lot more and probably less parking in the area. He said that the proposed Feeder Canal Trail is expected to attract more people to the area. Allyn asked about the water quality concerns with regard to the Feeder Canal Trail and Matt affirmed that the water quality staff is cautious. John asked if the same kind of dog restriction to protect the water should also be used to protect the wildlife in the area. Matt explained that due to jurisdiction and ownerships leashes are required on trails at both ends of the proposed connector so the same management restriction will be required along the connector. MOTION Allyn Feinberg moved that the Open Space Board of Trustees approve the CEAP report including the preferred alignment. Pat Billig seconded the motion. VOTE The motion passed unanimously. AGENDA ITEM 6 -Consideration of recommendations for the Preliminary 2009 Open Space and Mountain Parks Departmental Management and Capital Improvement Program Budgets and a portion of the Lottery Fund Capital Improvement Program Budget. Delani Wheeler introduced Mike Orosel, Financial Services Manager who introduced Marti Hill, Finance Assistant. He remazked about the importance of Marti's role in the preparation of the budget. Mike O. explained that there were two purposes to this agenda item: to gain approval for the appropriations of funds and to recommend that the Planning Board and City Council approve the CIP program for 2009 to 2014. The budget will continue for operations with a few increases - to restore funding for Water Rights acquisition, to cover the difference in personnel expenditures due to the reorganization and to provide funding for a professional analysis of the department's office space. Mike O. recollected that the economic downturn in 2001-2002 impacted all city departments. Due to the 2003 sales tax increase, OSMP was able to pull out more quickly and began funding the Visitor Master Plan in 2005. At this point the goal is for the department to reach equilibrium with revenues and expenditures. The department does not expect to see a large increase in its operating budget as it did when rebounding AGENDA ITEM 1 PAGE 3 from the downturn. He reminded the Board that funds can be reallocated within the department. Mike O. reported that there is an expectation that a proposed formula for determining the division of the lottery money may result in a larger cash amount for OSMP next year. The department would also be selling bonds later in the year specifically for the acquisition program. Delani explained the proposed Lottery Fund division in greater detail. She said the City Manager's Office (CMO) recommended splitting the expected $1.2 million as such: $150,000 to Greenways and the balance split 50/50 between OSMP and Pazks and Recreation. This would give OSMP $525,000 in 2009. Split of the funds after 2009 has not yet been determined. Delani then summarized the next steps of the budget process. John Putnam asked how the one-time CMO recommendation for the lottery allocation would be worked into the budget. Delani said it will be included in the CIP budget for 2009 and nothing thereafter. Mike Patton noted that traditionally the lottery money has gone to mountain backdrop projects and it will be spent there. Delani said that staff members have a project list that utilizes these funds. Pat Billig asked for clarification about the "Vision Plan". Mike Orosel explained that the CMO uses these categorizations as rational decision-making tools. When the city was coming out of its downturn its budget was "Fiscally Constrained", the second level is called the "Action Plan" and the "Vision Plan" would be funding that would allow the department all the identified services and projects. Delani added that "Vision Plan" would be the same as "Identified Need" called out in the Visitor Master Plan. John Putnam asked if staff had a sense for how the turmoil in the credit markets will affect the department's ability to bond. Delani responded that staff is meeting with the director of finance and the bond attorney on Friday. She acknowledged that there are fewer bond agencies, the rating system is tighter and there has been a slight increase in interest rates. Delani said the department's approach will be somewhat conservative and staff feels confident that enough bonds will be issued to cover the important acquisitions. Staff will bring this back to the Boazd. Public Participation None Return to Board & Staff Allyn Feinberg said that she was primarily concerned about the Lottery Fund allocafion reminding the Board that the agreement was to return to the original allocation formula ($150,000 to Greenways, $100,000 to OSMP -for defened maintenance in Mountain Pazks -and the remaining balance split 50/50 between OSMP and Parks & Recreation) after the two-year deferment of OSMP's share to Parks & Recreafion. The new allocation proposed by the City Manager's Office is a departure from this commitment. Allyn thought it would be important to either return to the original allocation agreement or come up with a settlement on how this will be negotiated for the next six yeazs. Delani clarified that Allyn's intent is to settle on an arrangement for allocation now rather than having to reevaluate it again next year. Pat Billig and John Putnam agreed with Allyn's recommendation. Mike Patton admitted that the ambiguity would make planning more difficult for the department. Allyn asked if an "either/or" recommendation would be appropriate. Mike Patton said that the Boazd could either give staff direction for conversation with the city manager or make a recommendation to council by a motion. Allyn reiterated that her preference was to return to the original agreement if the recent proposal would not extend through the six-year life of the CIP. AGENDA ITEM 1 PAGE 4 MOTION Allyn Feinberg moved that the Open Space Board of Trustees approves and recommends that City Council approves the appropriation in 2009 of $26,036,018 from the Open Space Fund and the General Fund to cover the 2009 Open Space and Mountain Parks Department expenditures and transfers as outlined in this memorandum and related attachments. John Putnam seconded the motion. VOTE The motion passed unanimously. MOTION Allyn Feinberg moved that the Open Space Board of Trustees approves and recommends that Planning Board and City Council approve $4,150,000 annually from the Open Space Fund CIP 2009 through 2014 budget as outlined in this memorandum and related attachments, with the exception of the Lottery Fund. John Putnam seconded the motion. VOTE The motion passed unanimously. The Boazd decided to make recommendations concerning the city's Lottery Fund CIP as a separate motion. MOTION Allyn Feinberg moved that the Open Space Boazd of Trustees recommends that City Council use the original formula for allocating lottery funds (Greenways - $150,000, Open Space and Mountain Parks - $100,000 and the balance split 50/50 between OSMP and Parks & Recreation) as articulated in documents from the ciTy manager's and budget offices including a period of at ]east, but not limited to, the next six-year CIP, or the Open Space Board of Trustees approves the allocation as recently proposed by the City Manager's Office (Greenways - $150,000 and the balance split 50/50 between Parks & Recreation and OSMP) as outlined in the memo if, and only if, said allocation will be in place for the six-yeaz CIP, 2009-2014. John Putnam seconded the motion. Board members agreed that this allocation is critical for the department to carry out the commitments made by council in order to move the Visitor Master Plan forward and to fulfill the expectations of the public. VOTE The motion passed unanimously. ADJOURNMENT -The meeting adjourned at 7:41 p.m. These menutes were prepared by Ceci(Fenio. r APP q Allyn F erg l / ' Boar lair DATE AGENDA ITEM I PAGE 5