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Black Diamond wants to move

by Brian Orr

WALSENBURG- The Walsenburg City Council listened to Jim Garcia of the Walsenburg Chamber of Commerce pitch the idea of holding this year’s Black Diamond Jubilee at the City Park on Seventh St., instead of its usual location down at the Huerfano County Community Center.  He asked the Council for permission to block off 8th and Olive Sts. so that vendors can set up booths outside the park lawn.

    Council members  immediately had concerns with the plan- from the heavy traffic loads to having so many people milling around a state highway.  Councilman Larry Patrick asked Garcia if it were possible to have the vendors set up inside the park itself, but garcia said the Black Diamond Committee was reluctant to do that for liability issues.  Garcia noted that this was just an idea, and if the Council rejected it, Black Diamond would remain at its usual location from years past.  Mayor Edi Sheldon said they would address specific concerns in a special work session next week.­

    Tom Cave of Accurate Engi-Surv gave the Council an update on the Northlands General Improvement District petition, stating they had 100 percent signing for the proposed district.  Tom Powell, who once upon a time was all in favor of the GID but has since dropped out, disputed this number, saying he and several other people had not signed the petition.  Cave countered that the shape of the proposed district was determined by who signed the petition, and if Powell and others chose not to sign, they were not part of the GID.  Those who did sign sign were part, so they still had 100 percent participation in the petition.  “We created the District’s boundary with the signatures, not the other way around,” Cave concluded.  The GID petition for annexation will also be discussed in the Council’s Special Work session next week.

    In other business, City Administrator Eric Pearson informed the Council that starting on June 8, the City would begin spraying for mosquitoes on Tuesday and Friday evenings at dusk.

    The 2007 water quality report was in, and everything looks good- “Joey Pacheco continues to do a good job,” noted Pearson.

    Pearson discussed the first meeting for the City’s Comprehensive Plan, and noted that questionnaires would be included in City customer utility bills (see front page story). 

    The winners of last Council session’s bid process for City vehicles was tabulated by City Clerk John Zgut, and deposits were returned to those people who did not win.

    Finally, the finance committee gave its report on legal notice advertising in the local newspapers.  The committee listened to the Huerfano World newspaper state it was not over-charging the City on its legal notices.  It was charging the maximum allowable rate, but not over that, as the publishers of the Signature newspaper, David and Renee Rhinehart, had stated in the City Council meeting two weeks ago.

    It was noted that Walsenburg has never put its legal notices up for bid, like the County has done.  

    With this discrepancy in mind, the City will put its legal notices up for bid, initially every four months, so that the three eligible newspapers in the county will have an equal chance to bid on them.  (The Journal newspaper is as of yet, not a legal newspaper, as we have not been publishing for 52 consecut­ive weeks.  We will reach legal status on Thanksgiving, 2008.)