Oak Creek discusses police | SteamboatToday.com

Oak Creek discusses police

Elliott: Town Board meeting will cover fiscal future

Melinda Dudley

— The Oak Creek Town Board will discuss “how police fit into our budget” at its meeting tonight, Mayor J. Elliott said Wednesday.

The town has yet to make any firm decisions about the future of the now-defunct Oak Creek Police Department, and it has toyed with re-establishing the department with new officers and contracting with the Routt County Sheriff’s Office for law enforcement services.

“We need to figure out which way we want to go,” Elliott said.

Former Chief Russ Caterinicchio and Sgt. Erik Foster resigned Sept. 11, along with the town’s community service officer. Officer Eileen Rossi finished her seasonal stint with the Oak Creek Police Department earlier this month, and the Routt County Sheriff’s Office has been handling emergency calls in the interim.

Discussions about Oak Creek’s future law enforcement will not be without fiscal considerations. The town’s trustees heard from the public at a police and budget work session Monday, and they will report on their findings and reactions tonight, Elliott said.

The Town Board still has to figure out how to trim roughly $55,000 from its proposed 2009 budget, he said.

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The current Town Board has stated its commitment to passing a balanced budget, which historically has not always been the case. Last October, facing a $228,000 budget deficit, the Town Board opted to transfer $250,000 from Oak Creek’s electric fund to balance the budget.

What shape the remaining fiscal trimming for 2009 will take has not been determined. The board expects to schedule a workshop in early November to finalize the budget, Town Clerk Karen Halterman said.

“We’ll do it, we’ve just got to get everyone on the same page,” Elliott said.

In addition to continued general discussions, the Town Board will discuss the future of ongoing abatement proceedings, in the absence of police and code enforcement officers, Halterman said.

Also on tonight’s agenda:

– An update from Britina Group about the town’s pending Comprehensive Plan and land-use code updates

– Hearing: Brian Enger re: subdivision of residential property, land-use change of minor impact

– Hearing: Chan Zwanzig, land use change of minor impact: granite fabrication in old kayak factory, 230 Arthur Ave. Formerly granted permission as warehouse for granite.

If you go

What: Oak Creek Town Board

When: 7 p.m. today

Where: Oak Creek Town Hall, 129 Nancy Crawford Blvd., Oak Creek