The Town of Fraser agreed to implement a short term rental registration program at their October 18th meeting that could go into effect on January 1st 2018. The town board allocated $20,000 dollars to purchase software to help manage the registration program. The Town board and the Winter Park/Fraser Police also discussed the need to contact owners and have a local contact on file in case of emergencies or issues with short term rentals located in the town. The Town of Fraser debated on whether to create a licensing program versus a registration program and agreed that a registration program would accomplish the goal of providing owner information for short term rentals. The town also decided that a $150 registration fee would cover the cost of the software required to manage the program, administration costs, as well as provide funds for the affordable housing fund run by the Town of Fraser.
The Town Board also began budget deliberations and discussed line item budget options prior to hosting public budget meetings. During the meeting Mayor Vandernail emphasized that the Town of Fraser is currently debt free and in a good place to invest in the infrastructure and improvement projects. Town Manager, Jeff Durbin iterated that they are only required to have one budget meeting, but the trustees prefer to have at least three public budget meetings to allow Fraser residents to comment on budget items and encourage continued transparency by the town board. The town will hold budget workshops and public hearings on Nov. 1, Nov. 15, and Dec. 6.
The town board discussed that total town expenditures could potentially double from 2017 to 2018 from $8 million dollars to $15.5 million dollars.
There was discussion on potential sales tax revenues loses that could have an impact on the figures and the new “pay as you throw” PAYT trash and recycle facility having an impact on budget. Other factors would be the $2 million dollars allocated for County Road 72 improvements. The town also mentioned setting aside at least $1.5 million for future improvements to County Road 8. The town’s public works fleet is in need of improvements and will be addressed during the upcoming budget hearings. Some grant funding is anticipated to have a net effect on the projects identified and the overall budget for 2018.
Mayor Philip Vandernail also talked about the success of the Public Arts Committee with the new murals in Fraser. The board talked about providing additional funding to the PAC to continue to add to look and feel of Funky Fraser’s art district.
During the October meeting there was also discussion of creating medians on highway 40 that would create calming pedestrian islands to improve pedestrian access and slow traffic in the downtown Fraser area. Although no plans are in place Trustee Miller wants to make this a vision for the corridor in the future
Fraser Trustee Katie Soles opened a discussion during the meeting regarding the proposed location of Fraser’s new recycling and PAYT facility at the corner of Mill and Leonard streets. Soles says that many residents have expressed concerns about traffic and noise from the operation of the new facility. The trustees agreed that they would like Fraser residents to bring any ideas or concerns for the new facility to the town board so that there can be an open discussion regarding the pros and cons of the locations identified.
Finally, the town scheduled a public forum on November 15th to discuss adoption of new building codes. Trustee Andy Miller stated that the purpose of the adoption of the new codes is to help make all building codes consistent throughout Grand County.