Jump-starting this thread on the Boulder Rez resolution, bc it's so damned interesting and somewhat unprecedented. We rarely get pushback on neighbor opposition from the city.
Some background: The visitor center at the Rez got a serious redo in recent years, after the 2012 Parks & Rec master plan ID'd it as a need.
That included a restaurant/bar, to meet the goals of the 2017 concept plan for the new facility:
“extending shoulder season use opportunities, establishing partnerships with various groups to expand programming and offset construction and operating costs...
... expanding concession offerings with the possibility of obtaining a liquor license for the site, and creating multi-use spaces serving a variety of events across all generations of Reservoir users”
Just to give you a sense of how long this has been in the works.

Parks & Rec OK'd a lease with Landloch to operate the new restaurant/bar in January 2020. It was OK'd by city council on Feb. 4, 2020, on the consent agenda (no discussion)
I'm not sure when the neighborhood opposition started, but at some point, neighbors of the Rez realized there would be booze served at the restaurant. I think when they applied for a liquor license. Staff recalls it as fall 2020.
They were concerned about noise and drunk drivers and, of course, wildlife. They started showing up at city council. But at that point, it was out of council's hands: They already approved a lease.
So they took the fight to the liquor board. The application for a liquor license was withdrawn. Not sure if it was ever pursued/resolved again. There was some drama with the operator at one of this other restaurants involving liquor licenses. I didn't follow it. Neighbors did.
They have kept showing up at city council. Council keeps doing nothing, bc they can't interfere with liquor licenses, and they already OK'd this whole plan and the lease.
Then, maybe as like a test or a move to gain goodwill, a bunch of nonprofits planned fundraisers at the Rez. Beloved organizations like Community Foundation, There With Care, etc.
They had to apply for liquor licenses for these special events, which were publicly noticed.

Neighbors threatened to disrupt these events, the Daily Camera reported, snapping pics of attendees license plates and reporting them for drunk driving, etc. dailycamera.com/2021/07/07/bou…
The dinners were canceled.
Which brings us to tonight, and this very unusual resolution from the Parks & Recreation Advisory Board, which "strongly disapprove(s) of the reported emails, if true, threatening to disrupt publicly vetted and approved events at the Reservoir."
We "believe that there are more appropriate and productive ways to express concerns or provide feedback on issues of public concern," they wrote. "The PRAB supports the democratic and public process through which the Concept Plan and lease agreement with the restaurant owner...
"...was established … The PRAB supports the Department staff, who are incredibly talented and dedicated public servants, and their good-faith efforts to engage community members and to address and accommodate their concerns."
Moreover, PRAB notes, there have been concessions run by a private contractor via lease "for decades." Special events, too, have been held there “for decades” with special team to enforce noise, safety, parking, etc.
“Under this Policy event organizers must provide a deposit to the city, and that no deposits have been withheld based on a failure to comply with such requirements," PRAB wrote.
"This was an incredibly difficult conversation," city manager NRV says. "It's been a really difficult time. ... When we have differences in community, the manner in which you express those differences matters."
Parks & Rec director Ali Rhodes adding some detail. The restaurant operators did withdraw their liquor license application, and were going to operate for 1 yr to demonstrate that they could be a good neighbor.
The nonprofit dinners were supposed to be part of that. Special event liquor licenses are really common, as Rhodes says. The upcoming Ironman, for instance, will have a beer garden.
At the end of the day, the liquor board approved 6 special event permits for those nonprofit fundraisers.
Rhodes quoting from neighbor emails threatening to protest with bullhorns, photograph attendees, call the cops, etc.

While those actions are protected by the First Amendment, they are not conducive to a welcoming environment, Rhodes says. The events were cancelled.
Weaver: "We have tried very hard to reasonable concerns. Sometimes concerns move beyond the realm of reasonability."
Rhodes also noting that the restaurant operators other establishments have been threatened.
Thanks them for hanging in there and being good partners.
Friend asked, and Rhodes and Llanes responding, that liquor licenses and restaurants are allowed in these types of areas. Chautauqua, the golf course, etc.
The only different here, Llanes says, is the very vocal group of residents who are not happy with this.
Young: "This restaurant, the whole thing went through a very long and extensive public process, with feedback all the way. ... What I'm seeing here is folks that don't want the restaurant. Short of that, there is no compromise to be made."
"It's a difficult situation," Young said, "but I do support what PRAB said."

She's reading from the neighbor emails.
Well, she will be soon. "I don't want to indict anybody, but I think (ppl) should know" what was said.
"My neighborhood and I are requesting you end your events earlier than planned, and make last call 8:30 p.m. or, better, choose a different location." Then goes on to say they will report license plates to sheriffs and may protest events in person.
These were emails sent to the nonprofits with planned events.
Young: The restaurant was established through a public process that was supported by the community. We need to follow through on that. And special materials were purchased to cut down on noise; concessions were made.
Wallach: "That email was thoroughly unacceptable in many ways."

Another double-sigh minute.
Is it just one person flying off the handle, or the sentiments of a large group? he asks. They warrant different responses.
Rhodes: I've heard from neighbors who do not agree with that approach and find it reprehensible. There are folks in this neighborhood who are coordinating and working together, and others who are not. And neighbors who support the restaurant but are afraid to express it...
... bc of the way they have been treated, Rhodes says.
Rhodes explaining what I hopefully did earlier: Liquor licenses have to cover the maximum allowable hours of service. In this case, midnight. But the lease doesn't allow service to go that late.
Rhodes: "This is not a late-night rave town."
I don't remember what those are, but the Rez gates will still close at the same time they do now, not letting anyone in past: 9 p.m.
Some other fun facts about the Rez: Open to public swimming in the 1950s.

Today, 300,000 annual visitors.
LOL Yates asking a bunch of qs that he already knows the answer to so he can "get his facts straight."
Now asking qs about events that have already happened there without issue. Fundraisers for nonprofits, both.
I think the latter 6 events got so much attention bc they all applied at once for licenses, and it was publicly noticed, and ppl were already paying attention.
Brockett: I was v disappointed those events had to be canceled. We're working hard to show we're going to be a good neighbor, purchasing special noise abatement equipment, etc.
Prob moving on soon, but. Ido think this highlights an interesting issue about public engagement, bc we see it happen so often. Something will be going on for YEARS, neighbors won't be paying any attention and miss opportunities to give input.
Then, all the sudden, someone will notice and all hell breaks loose. Neighbors feel like the process was somehow shady or rushed bc they didn't know about it; city feels like they've been working on it for years.
You can't force ppl to pay attention. The city isn't being shady here; I reported on this for years.

But ppl aren't always paying attention to this little boring gov't stuff. Is that the gov't's responsibility, or the citizens'?
A rare Nagle-Friend alliance, who don't want council to pass PRAB's resolution as its own. Rest of council disagrees.
I don't see what it would add, Friend says.
Rhodes: Idk how we move on from this. But we have to. We're neighbors.
Nagle: "As usual, I tend to support the neighborhood. It's always on the losing side. ... They constantly don't feel like they're being heard."
Nagle: "It's quality of life, the fact that it wasn't there when they bought their homes. When their entire life savings is in their home, it's scary."
But she's willing to look at the resolution, which Weaver says can be "part of that healing" bc it's all positive and not condemning anyone.
Moving on now.
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More from @shayshinecastle

21 Jul
OMG last item: Update on the city attorney search!
Friend, Yates (subcommittee) recommending continuing the search process. They didn't get enough applicants (12) and were apparently unhappy with the 2 finalists.
Wow. Interesting.
Read 17 tweets
21 Jul
Quick update on board and commission vacancies:
2 on HAB, 1 on downtown mgt commission

Nagle/Brockett will notify ppl who have applied in past years and open it to new folks as well.
HAB = Housing Advisory Board
Brockett responding to Young's concerns last week that maybe there's an issue with HAB since it has a lot of turnover. The 2 resignations were ppl moving out of town.

So maybe it's a housing affordability issue.
Read 4 tweets
21 Jul
Next item is a discussion about the CCS tax extension that we've covered so much lately.

Presentation: documents.bouldercolorado.gov/WebLink/DocVie…
Or you can read my stories. boulderbeat.news/2021/02/10/tax…
Read 21 tweets
21 Jul
Moving on to tonight's public hearing: Banning tents on public property.

This is part of larger effort to stop unsheltered people from living in public places, including with increased removal of homeless camps. It was last discussed May 11 as part of annual homeless update.
How the city's camping ban works right now is that it requires "activities of daily living" before cops can consider it violated, so they can't remove tents that aren't being lived/slept in overnight.
Read 97 tweets
21 Jul
Moving on to consent agenda, which has quite a few things we're going to talk about.

All 3 law enforcement type things are on here, so I'll do a super quick rundown of those.
No booze on open space or parks land
Since mid 1980s, applies to public places within city limits - makes it hard to enforce on most OSMP land, which is not within city limits
Exemptions: Coot Lake, Boulder Reservoir, Flatirons Golf Course, East Mapleton Ball Fields, and Stazio Recreation Complex

Can get a permit, typically for special events (Boulder Creek Fest)
Read 14 tweets
21 Jul
I'll prob tweet a bit of open comment tonight, since it looks like a lot of Gunbarrel folks are here to speak against the Celestial Seasonings project.

Planning Board approved that 6-0 (with conditions) on June 17.
Actually, let's just go ahead and look at that project now, shall we?
Here are staff's slides: documents.bouldercolorado.gov/WebLink/DocVie…

As a reminder, a call-up is where council votes to review a Planning Board decision. That doesn't necessarily mean they'll overturn it (that's incredibly rare) but they might want to have their own input.
Read 86 tweets

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