Left Hand Valley Courier - All Local, All The Time

By Vicky Dorvee

NCA annual meeting marks change in board members


April 27, 2018

Photo by Vicky Dorvee At the 2018 NCA annual meeting, newly elected NCA President David Limbach presented outgoing President Dick Piland with gifts to thank him for his service for the past five years.

Longtime president of the Niwot Community Association (NCA), Dick Piland, presided over his final meeting, Wednesday, April 18, at the Left Hand Grange Hall. Piland announced at the January NCA board meeting that he would not seek re-election this year, marking the end of five years heading up the board.

Voting for available board positions concluded at the annual meeting, signifying the conclusion of two-year terms for half of the board. Each nominee ran unopposed. The other half of the board positions are in place through April 2019.

The incoming board members consist of President David Limbach (former VP), Vice-President Tom Sesnic (former Area 4 representative), and Secretary Leonard Sitongia. The new communications director is Diane Zimmermann, while Craig Rahenkamp remains the trails and open space director. The new Area 1 representative is Mark Brigham. Area 8 representative Scott Brown remains in place. Area 6, bordered by Mineral Rd and Lookout Rd to the north and south, and 71st St and Hwy 287 to the east and west, remains a vacant position.

Boulder County Land Use presentation

The meeting opened with guests from the Boulder County Land Use Department, including Director Dale Case, Chief Building Official Ron Flax, and Senior Planner Jesse Rounds.

Before starting a project, Case encouraged contact with the planning division by calling 303-441-3930 and accessing online resources at www.bouldercounty.org/departments/land-use.

Flax covered the BuildSmart program, a response from Boulder County to climate change issues which sets out code requirements for new construction, additions and remodels with the end goal being to promote low emissions, resource conservation, energy efficiency, and safe air quality, along with lower landfill effects.

Depending on the type of project being undertaken, as well as the size and age of the house, there are varying paths offered to reach the code requirements.

“Boulder has a long history of trying to do the right thing,” Flax said. “The residential piece still takes up a pretty big piece of the emissions and this is what we’re trying to solve. We have a lot of options and flexibility for homeowners to reach their goals.”

He said the most comprehensive tool they use to measure household energy usage, the HERS (Home Energy Rating System) index, is a scale that determines if a home meets building requirements and helps to specifically target where efficiency gains can be accomplished.

Flax suggested homeowners become acquainted with EnergySmart, a program funded and subsidized by the county and cities within Boulder County. They have a service providing energy assessment audit house calls for a fee. For additional information, visit - http://www.bouldercounty.org/environment/sustainability/energy-smart.

Trails and open space

Rahenkamp described the numerous Niwot trail projects either underway or planned.

“Boulder County has been really active on work in the last year in terms of work on Niwot trails,” Rahenkamp said.

The Niwot Loop trail now has a handicap grade-level crossing just east of the NHS trailhead, starting at the auxiliary parking lot, and a bear-proof trash can has been installed. A groomed trail has been completed behind the high school connecting with the Overbrook Subdivision. A memorial bench has been installed along the path honoring Niwot resident Pat Jones.

The trail leading to the Left Hand Valley Grange Park (just west of Niwot Road and 83rd Street) and the new parking area are nearly complete. Volunteers are in place to plant trees, shrubs and perennials at the park on Saturday, April 28. A port-a-potty is now in place, but will eventually be replaced by a $100K heated flush-toilet building, with two unisex bathrooms. The facilities were funded by the county in cooperation with Niwot Youth Sports, which leases and maintains the ballfield at the park.

Two other trails in Niwot are planned for the coming year. The first trail meets up with the water tower above Longview Road and then joins the trail segment to the west of Legend Ridge. Another new segment will be added at the east end of Marathon Road from Niwot Elementary School continuing through Morton Heights.

Concerns were raised about the piles of debris on the trail just east of the recycling parking lot after the bridge near 79th Street. Rahenkamp will contact the county to see what can be done. He added that it’s not unusual for that to occur, because the debris is being cleared by the ditch company and they have right of way.

Firehouse restoration project

Felicia Santelli, representing the Niwot Historical Society, requested that NCA members support and ask others to donate to the renovation of the historic firehouse building forecourt. Fundraising efforts to increase the curb appeal of the building have collected $15,000 of the Niwot Historical Society’s $20,000 goal.

“We want this to be a community project, with organizations, businesses, and schools being involved,” Santelli said. “And now we’re asking the community to be involved. If 100 families each give $50, that will bring us over the top.”

To donate, visit www.niwothistoricalsociety.org.

2018 NCA goals and objections

Piland listed the NCA’s objectives for the coming year. The highlights include providing grants to worthy Niwot community projects, causes and organizations; coordinating traffic control at parades; continuing communication with the Niwot Community and Boulder County including the addition of a Niwot crime report; and sponsoring three special events — Niwot

Cleanup Day (May 12), Niwot’s 4th of July celebration, and National Night Out, Aug. 7.

Volunteers are needed for Niwot Cleanup Day. The event takes place at Niwot High School from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. or “until the dumpsters are full,” on Saturday, May 12. NCA members pay nothing to leave items; non-members will pay $40 per car load. It was noted that other ways to dispose of items (such as through Western Disposal) would incur much higher fees, but the NCA subsidizes the event.

Items accepted fall into several categories: reusable items, trash (with a few exclusions), recycling such as yard waste, scrap metal, water-based paints, and small electronics. Recycling fees for televisions and mattresses, both new items allowed this year, are between $5 and $20 per item.

The 2017 Cleanup Day haul resulted in a 63 percent diversion rate, meaning that percentage of items collected at the event did not end up in a landfill.

Membership Director Johnny Barrett mentioned that volunteering for the annual event is a fun and gratifying way to spend time with the community. Shifts are two hours long. To volunteer, email volunteer@niwot.org.

Piland reported that with another month and a half to go, the membership numbers are presently at 297 families, and the association is hoping to reach 400 families by the end of the membership drive.

Boulder County Commissioners candidate forum postponed

It was also noted on the NCA website, “The NCA Boulder County Commissioner Candidate forum, which was scheduled for May 16th, has been postponed until the fall. The results of the caucuses have changed the landscape. There is now one democrat, one republican, and one independent that have qualified for the November election. Therefore, the NCA forum will be scheduled for a time just before the November election ballots are mailed to voters.”

Wrap up

Newly elected President Limbach presented Piland with words of high praise and some parting gifts to thank him for his years of service.

For more information on the Niwot Community Association, visit www.niwot.org. Membership fees are $30 per year.


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