Super Precinct locations approved
May 24 public hearing on Tanglewood set; extension requested on subdivision approval
Five Super Precinct polling places for the 2012 elections were approved by Park County’s Board of County Commissioners on April 5.
Park County Clerk and Recorder Debra Green said the Super Precincts are different than the vote centers used in past elections, where any registered voter could vote at any vote center in the county.
Using Super Precincts, a voter not using a mail-in or early voting ballot must vote at the location for the precinct where that voter is registered.
Some precinct boundaries were changed earlier this year. After each 10-year census, boundaries are redrawn due to population changes in the county.
Voters in Precincts 1, 2, 3 and 7 will vote at the Fairplay Fairbarn located at 880 Bogue St. in Fairplay.
Platte Canyon Community Church, at 4954 County Road 64 in Bailey, will be the voting location for Precincts 4, 8 and 9.
Platte Canyon Fire Station No. 2, at 153 Delwood Drive at the top of Crow Hill, will be the voting location for Precincts 10, 11, 12 and 13.
Voters in Precinct 5 will vote at Lake George Fire Department, 8951 CR 90, in Lake George.
Voters in Precinct 6 will vote at the Guffey Community Center at 1625 CR 102 in Guffey.
Green said the decision to use Super Precincts was made to reduce the cost of elections, particularly for the primary election, where 26 different ballot styles are needed.
Green said that when vote centers were used, each center had copies of all 26 primary ballot styles, one for each party in each of the 13 precincts. Each voting machine was programmed for all 26 ballot styles by an outside company. Laptops with the poll books also had to be programmed for all registered voters in the county.
Using Super Precincts, each polling place will only need ballots for the precincts at that Super Precinct. Likewise, voting machines will be programmed for the styles used at that particular Super Precinct. Laptops will be programmed for only the voters who will vote at that Super Precinct.
At the time of the April 5 meeting, Green wasn’t sure of the amount the county would save. That will depend on the length of the ballots at both the primary and general elections and the number of ballots needed at each Super Precinct.
As an example of costs for an election, Green used the 2011 mail-in-only November election. Only one ballot style and six to eight election judges were needed. The total election cost was $17,000.
Super Precincts will need 20 election judges in addition to the early voting and mail-in-ballot judges, and more voting machines and laptops will need to be programmed. So the costs will be considerably higher.
Green said money is also being saved because the ballots are printed in Denver by Response Technology. In the past, ballots were printed out- of-state and had higher shipping costs.
After an executive session, the commissioners voted to hold a public hearing on the extension of the Tanglewood Reserve Planned Unit Development’s conditional plat approval, including the Subdivision Improvement Agreement (SIA).
The hearing will take place on May 24 at 9 a.m. in the commissioners meeting room in Fairplay.
Littleton-based Pine Ridge Residential LLC owns Tanglewood Reserve. It is located just west of Pine Junction on both sides of U.S. 285. The Will-O-Wisp subdivision is adjacent to the west side of Tanglewood Reserve.
The conditional approval required a letter of credit for $1,136,070 to cover the public improvements for Phases C and D of development. That letter of credit was never received by the county.
Tanglewood was conditionally approved in 2006 for eight phases of development. Each phase required a separate letter of credit. No development has occurred. Phases C and D were to be developed first.
The subdivision approval resolution states: “In the event the applicant fails to deliver successive letters of credit in a timely manner, then the approval for said undeveloped phases shall become null and void without any further action by the county, in such event the county attorney shall record an appropriate notice with the county clerk and recorder.”
Tom Ragonetti, attorney for Pine Ridge Residential, requested a five-year extension to post the letter of credit after receiving a notice of possible termination of the subdivision approval from Park County’s attorney, Lee Phillips.
Ragonetti is a partner in the Denver-based law firm of Otten, Johnson, Robinson, Neff and Ragonetti.
Reasons for the extension request included the current recession and lack of market demand for the development.
Ragonetti also noted in his letter to Park County that the plat had been signed and recorded even though the approval required the first letter of credit before recording took place; the developers had been told to complete some grading to vest the property; one third of the lots had been sold to Ryland Homes; each lot was being individually taxed; and the developers had spent considerable money obtaining a 1041 wildlife permit and a 404 wetlands permit. Both permits were conditions of the plat approval.
Phillips told The Flume that the commissioners would take all testimony under advisement and release a written decision about one week after the hearing.
If the commissioners decide not to approve the extension, the subdivision approval would be terminated, according to Phillips.
Any member of the public wishing to provide written testimony for the hearing may mail it to P.O. Box 1314, Fairplay, CO 80440 or email it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Public testimony will also be taken during the hearing.
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