December 23, 2005

Pine Ridge PUD becomes Tanglewood
By Lynda James, Correspondent


FAIRPLAY, Colo. — On Dec. 15, the Board of County Commissioners continued the final plat of Tanglewood Reserve until Jan. 5. The name was changed from Pine Ridge PUD because a Pine Ridge currently exists near Fairplay.

Applicants are Sunset Management Services and Ryland Homes.

The total number of lots has been reduced to 446. Most lots are approximately a quarter acre in size.

All conditions previously recommended by the Park County Planning Commission were met by the Board of County Commissioners.

Deeds were submitted donating land north of U.S. 285 to Elk Creek Fire Protection District for a fire station and to the homeowners’ association for a recreation center. If a Platte Canyon Recreation District is formed, the HOA will transfer their land to the district for a public recreation center.

Three lots that were placed in a wildlife corridor were removed. Several covenant changes were also made, including allowing alternative energy devices.

Will-O-Wisp Metropolitan District President Rick Angelica testified the district has a signed contract to provide water and sewer. Surface water will be diverted from Elk Creek.

Angelica said Will-O-Wisp Metropolitan District’s contract required the developer to pay the district $300,000 to repair the roads in Will-O-Wisp after construction of a larger sewage plant. A condition of approval required the money be paid to Park County, however.

After discussion, the BOCC said the Will-O-Wisp Metropolitan District could hold the road repair money in escrow providing Park County had input about repairs.

Resident Vera Dunbody testified to research she had completed regarding the development’s water rights. Dunbody compared the water rights ownership to a car being stolen, sold several times with titles being given to each owner. In the example she said the original owner retained legal ownership once the car is found.

Michael Schaeffer, attorney for Woodside 5 and 6 Homeowners Association and owner of Lot 132 where the Woodside Reservoir is proposed, read a Dec. 14 letter from Colorado Department of Water Resources. The State Engineer could not confirm the adequacy of the water supply.

Schaefer asked that the BOCC not add any conditions if the commissioners approve the development. According to Schaefer, additional conditions could affect possible Rule 106 lawsuits. Such challenges to a governmental decision must be filed within 30 days of the decision.

Schaefer pointed out Jeffrey Kahn, Park County’s water attorney, wrote in 2002 that any easements for water infrastructure must be obtained. To date, no easements have been obtained from landowners in Woodside for the reservoir or other infrastructure planned on private property.

Schaefer handed out copies of a lawsuit filed on Dec. 14 by the Woodside 5 and 6 HOA against the Will-O-Wisp Metropolitan District to determine if the district had a right to build water supply infrastructure in Woodside. The Woodside plat states all lots are for residential use only. He said the HOA will likely file in Water Court to determine the water rights ownership.

Alan Fishman of Sunset Management Services responded 26 lots could be developed before the reservoir is needed, and the applicant is confident the water rights and reservoir rights are legal. “We’d like our final plat and take our risks.”

Commissioner James Gardner said, “I don’t believe there is enough information on the ability to supply water.” He moved to continue the final plat until after the completion of a Special Development (water and wastewater) 1041 permit hearing. Park County Land Use Regulations require a permit before final approval of a development that is served by central water and sewer.

Attorney Timothy Flanigan, who represented the applicant, said more information could be provided sooner than the 1041 hearing.

Park County Attorney Stephen Groome said to ensure due process, the BOCC needed to hear the additional information as part of the final approval process.

Gardner changed his motion to continue the approval to obtain more information on the water rights, availability and ability to deliver water.

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