Highlands Ranch news in a hurry

Staff Report
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HRCA delegates still sought

Four new delegates were elected to the Highlands Ranch Community Association’s advisory committee in a special meeting Oct. 22, leaving the association still seeking representatives for 20 of its 93 districts. The newly elected delegates include Jason Bezon, who now represents 1,290 lots in District 86; Karen Grewell, who represents 242 lots in District 27; Derek Long, who represents 251 lots in District 11; and Larry Perkins, a former longtime delegate, who represents 296 lots in District 7.

“We are looking for conscientious individuals who want to give back and want to do it in such a way that it is a good representation of the community,” said HRCA CEO Jerry Flannery. “When individuals are involved and engaged, they can provide feedback from around the community and make this a stronger community.”

To learn more about delegate responsibilities, as outlined in the community declarations, visit www.hrcaonline.org and follow the “HRCA Info” tab on the left to “Leadership” and click on “District Delegates” in the menu on the far left. To apply for an open seat, please contact Flannery’s office at 303-471-8801. Typically elections for delegates take place in April, but with the current amount of vacancies, Flannery said, the board is interested in getting seats filled now.

Fence fight flares anew

Phillip Cullen, who resigned his position as a Highlands Ranch Metro District director in February 2012, citing differences with fellow directors, petitioned the board to no avail for the second time this year on Oct. 29 with the hope the district would change the way its fence replacement program is financed.

Cullen, who says the fence program “unfairly creates two classes of taxpayers” by providing a greater benefit for those whose private property abuts the fence line, was unanimously shot down by the directors in February 2013 when he first petitioned for the change. The former director then retained legal counsel to see if he had any recourse to challenge the district at the state level and was advised he did not.

“Let me say a word of caution at this point,” he told the board Oct. 29. “The board should not take solace or assume that the lack of legal recourse justifies past board actions. ... What is legal and what is in the best interest of the community as a whole can be two very different things. Public subsidies where populations have a wide gap between wealthy and poor citizens may be appropriate; however in a wealthy community such as Highlands Ranch, subsidies are inherently discriminatory.”

Cullen asked that each of directors be individually polled in open forum and that the minutes reflect the vote of each director. No board member came forward with a motion to act on Cullen’s petition and Cullen left the meeting immediately after. Board member Carolyn Schierholz then explained to those in attendance that the board has dealt with Cullen’s matter previously and it had received attention already.

Elkhart expands Douglas facility

Indiana-based Elkhart Plastics Inc. announced this past week that it is expanding its operations at its Highlands Ranch plant, located along the Santa Fe corridor on Blakeland Drive. The expansion includes the addition of 4,000 square feet of office space and 31,000 square feet on the manufacturing/warehouse floor, which will add up to between 15 and 20 new manufacturing jobs once the expansion is complete.

“I feel our biggest accomplishment in the last 25 years has been our ability to grow into a world-class organization ... while maintaining the entrepreneurial spirit, enthusiasm and excitement upon which the business was founded,” said Elkhart Vice President Jeff Giacchino. “We look forward to adding more members to this team.”

Interested in local history?

There are three seats currently open to Douglas County residents on the county’s historic preservation board. The advisory board works with the county commissioners and the planning commission on zoning and subdivision issues related to cultural and historic resources and more, and also has a voice in historic sites in the county receiving designation.

For more information or to apply, visit www.douglas.co.us/commissioners/citizen-boards/historic-preservation-board/ or contact Judy Hammer at 303-660-7460. The application deadline is Dec. 2.

Free wildfire seminar slated

Homeowners who live near forested areas or on large acreage are invited to take advantage of a free wildfire mitigation seminar hosted by the Douglas County Conservation District from 9 a.m. until noon Nov. 9 at the Franktown Firehouse, 1959 S. Highway 83 in Franktown.

The seminar will present information on defensible space, structural ignition, local fire mitigation, current health conditions of area forests and forest health projects and grant opportunities. Those who wish to attend are asked to RSVP by the end of the week by calling 303-688-3042, ext. 100 or emailing pam.brewster@co.nacdnet.net.

Tree recycling scheduled

The Highlands Ranch Metro District invites residents to recycle their discarded tree branches less than 12 inches in diameter, along with other woody plant materials from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Nov. 9 in the Shea Stadium parking lot, 3280 Redstone Circle.

All discarded material will be chipped into mulch and given away free to homeowners or reused in parks and parkways throughout the community. The following items will not be accepted at the event: finished lumber, non-woody material, grass clippings, sod and root balls.

For more information about winter tree care or tree recycling, please visit the forestry page at www.highlandsranch.org or call 303-791-2710.

Financial workshop slated

Back by popular demand, “Strategies to Financial Freedom,” is being offered to adults of all ages from 9 to 11 a.m. Nov. 16 at the Senior Lounge at Southridge Recreation Center, 4800 McArthur Ranch Road.

Hosted by the Highlands Ranch Senior Triad, the educational workshop provides participants with an opportunity to learn how to map their individual strategy for living well.

For more information or to register, please contact Jodie McCann at jmccann@highlandsranch.org or 720-240-4922. Registration is required and the workshop costs $8 per person. Breakfast is included.

Veterans Day events planned

“A Veterans Day Tribute” will take place at 11 a.m. Nov. 11 on the Veterans Monument Plaza, located at the corner of Wilcox and Fourth Streets in downtown Castle Rock. The tribute, planned by the Veterans Monument Foundation, The Douglas County Office of Veterans Affairs and the Castle Rock Harry C. Miller American Legion Post 1187, will honor all veterans past and present. For more information, call 303-663-6200 or visit www.douglas.co.us/humanservices/veterans.

The Highlands Ranch Library and Metro District also co-host the annual Veterans Day Commemoration from 6 to 8 p.m. at the library, 9292 S. Ridgeline Blvd. Featuring the Highlands Ranch Concert Band and a panel of veterans discussing their service, the event requires no registration and is geared toward middle school age and up. 

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