Group awaits land swap letter |

Group awaits land swap letter

Citizens to Save Our Public Lands, a grass-roots group established by a group of West Routt County residents who use Bureau of Land Management lands, could get a big boost if the Hayden Town Board signs an official letter of support.

The group is opposing a proposal to sell a number of smaller BLM properties into private ownership to help finance a three-way land swap that would put under BLM ownership the nearly 6,500-acre Emerald Mountain in Steamboat Springs. At the last Town Board meeting, several trustees said they agreed with the group’s position that the land swap would benefit Steamboat Springs at the expense of rural residents, who would lose access to BLM parcels that they use.

However, with several board members absent, trustees decided at the last meeting to postpone taking a formal position on the land swap until the entire board was present. If the full board is present at Thursday’s meeting, a vote will be made on whether to support the group.

In other business:

n Audrey Danner of the Yampa Valley Partners will make a presentation about what the organization has been doing in the past year, and what it has planned for the future. The group “aims to support the development of healthy communities in Routt and Moffat counties by fostering communication, cooperation and collaboration,” Danner said. This will be the first time the group has asked the town of Hayden for funding, as the group normally relies on grants and local contributions and donations. But, Danner said the group is seeking to “diversify its funding sources” for increased stability.

n The board is expected to adopt a resolution accepting the completion of the water treatment plant improvement project. Though actual construction has been completed for months now, the new technology took several months for employees to learn. The signing of the resolution would mean that the new plant is running at its optimal capabilities with optimally trained staff.

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