by Carol Dunn
LA VETA- At its June 16 meeting, the La Veta Town Board voted 4-1 to hire Gerald Baumgarner as the new Deputy Marshal. Marshal Harold Willburn said the new deputy will be looking for a place to live within a few days.
Cara Campbell and Derek Andreas, members of the student-led organization Get R!EAL Colorado, spoke to the Board about the dangers of tobacco use and second-hand smoke and asked the Board to pass an ordinance to make the town park tobacco-free. Get R!EAL is an advocacy movement that gives youth a voice in the fight against tobacco. Campbell and Andreas recounted ten Colorado cities/towns that have already enacted similar ordinances. The Board scheduled a workshop on June 23 at 6:30 pm at the Community Center to consider, in essence, the nuisance ordinance. Trustee Tracy Webb told the students, “We commend you for taking part in your local government.”
Lance Gatlin, new Division of Wildlife Enforcement Officer for this area, spoke to the Board about bear-proof trash containers. In response to a question about the bear population around La Veta this year, he said, “July is the month that will test us.”
Mayor Mickey Schmidt told the Board that the Town’s dam engineer, Chris Manera, has studied the leaking pipe at the Town Lakes and determined there is no way to line the damaged pipe. Schmidt said the lake will need to be drained and the pipe structure replaced within the next few years, depending on the mandate of the State Dam Inspector. Manera estimated the cost will be $100,000 to $200,000.
The Board agreed to a change in the 2007 intergovernmental agreement which formed the Huerfano Regional Building Authority. The Authority wants all building inspectors of Walsenburg, La Veta and Huerfano County to be ICC-certified by January 1, 2010. Trustee Dale Davis recommended that La Veta’s two inspectors be certified even sooner, by October 31, 2009. The Board agreed.
Randy and Angela Collins were granted a setback variance to build a shed at the old sandstone building, 221 S. Oak.
The Board agreed to pay RAI $700 to remove two dead trees in Town, a locust on Main and a cottonwood on Virginia.
In response to a request by Town resident Nevin McKay, the Board will survey claimed damages from the water project and, if valid, will refer the claim to the project contractor.
Mary Jean Fowler also reported to the La Veta Town Boardthat the Town has been approved by the National Park Service for Certified Local Government status.
State money is available to owners of “landmark structures” within CLGs to help them keep their historic buildings in good repair. Fowler told the Journal, the Historic Preservation Committee is working on a list of landmark structures within La Veta using architectural surveys from 1985 and 1999. The committee considers structures 50 years of age or older that are still similar to their original appearance.