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At their regular meeting on April 18, the Salida City Council (SCC) reviewed and approved amounts for disbursal to local nonprofit organizations through community grant applications; and approved Amplified Sound Permit requests for two bars, Tres Litros and High Side for outdoor music events at the end of April

They approved a liquor license application for the Mexico Tradicional restaurant on Hwy 50; approved Resolutions 2023-18 – 20, and proclaimed April as Lyme and Other Tick-Borne Diseases/Conditions Awareness Month.

After holding public hearings for the Amplified Sound Permits and the Liquor License approval, the SCC turned to new business, voting to approve the disbursal of funds into a Donor Advised Fund, in partnership with the Chaffee County Community Foundation. 36 nonprofit organizations, including the Truth Has a Voice Foundation DBA Ark Valley Voice, will receive a portion of the $96,277 so allocated. The funds represent 1 percent of the city’s sales tax, intended for charitable giving.

The SCC then approved Resolutions 2023-18, reappointing Francie Bomer and Judith Dockery to the Planning Commission, with terms to expire in April 2027; 2023-19. the SCC approved the resignation of Connor Maher from the PROST (Parks, Recreation, Open Space and Trails) Board and appointed Rob Simpson of Colorado Mountain College to complete his term, ending June 2025; and 2023-20. They reviewed allowing for overnight camping with dogs at Marvin Park for a dog agility event, hosted by Gone to the Dogs, July 28-30.

During Council reports, several members, including Mayor Dan Shore, Mayor Pro-Tem Justin Critelli, and Alisa Pappenfort, expressed their support for the Salida Regional Library, which had been targeted for a protest by the local Catholic Church, and announced their intention to be present at the counter-protest.

Potential Environmental Issue with Union Pacific Land Sale

Dominique Naccarato brought up the recent announcement by Union Pacific that it intends to sell 12 acres of riverside property it owns for a price tag of S4.9 million dollars.

“We [the City] were approached, but they didn’t tell us the amount … and we weren’t given the option to oppose the Tennessee Creek Railroad line re-opening. They are selling it only for commercial or industrial use – no other options were given to us. There could be an issue, with a Phase 2 environmental report – there’s not a ton of grant opportunities for brownfields.”

In other business, T.W. Woodson from High Side! Bar and Grill made an impassioned plea for more parking spaces downtown, citing population and tourism growth, as well as potential loss of parking due to other development. A representative from the Salida Council for the Arts urged SCC members to attend the Valley Visions Art Show, coming up May 5 – 7.

The SCC also heard the latest sales tax report, which indicated a 1.5 percent decline in February from February 2022 for city sales tax; however, county sales tax revenues are up, so the City remains ahead of budget on revenues.

The SCC then went into Executive Session to consider the City Administrator’s evaluation.

Featured image: Members of the Salida City Council about to start their meeting. (Left to right) are Jane Templeton, Harald Kasper, Dominique Naccarato, Mayor Dan Shore, Mayor Pro Tem Justin Critelli, and Alisa Pappenfort. Not shown: Mike Pollock, who attends virtually. AVV staff photo