Woodland Station Project Hit With More Delays
The subject of missing Downtown Development Authority (DDA) records has been kicked around for years for previous and current boards without reaching any clear conclusions.
In particular, DDA Board Chairman Tony Perry, a frequent critic of the DDA and specifically former DDA Treasurer Tanner Coy, hasn’t been shy about voicing concerns over this issue.
Perry has harped on the subject of missing records as recently as the last regular meeting of the board. But alas, in response to Perry’s questioning of what happened to the missing records, Coy appeared before the board to address this contentious and complex issue at last week’s monthly meeting.
However, the nature and timing of his presentation generated a mild debate.
Before Coy began, Perry acknowledged Coy and gave him the customary three minutes to speak. Normally, someone coming before the board to speak on matters not on the agenda are given three minutes to talk but since this was such a hot button issue that keeps rearing its head, Board Member, Jerry Good asked that Coy be given more time to elaborate on his understanding of the issue. Perry was reluctant to give Coy more time, but eventually relented.
Before Coy began to address the missing records subject, he spoke about CORA (Colorado Open Records Act) requests he made for financial records of the DDA. It seems while researching those records, Coy uncovered a discrepancy in the revenue owed to the DDA by the county in the amount of $79,000. After reviewing the data, the county concurred with Coy’s numbers and cut a check for the $79,000 to the DDA.
Regarding the missing records subject, Coy addressed the issue in detail. The current board is concerned that records are missing regarding the 2018 lawsuit the previous board was involved in with Arden Weatherford and Colorado Beer Garden LLC (the plaintiff) over a parcel of land on the Woodland Station property. According to City Council DDA Liaison Rusty Neal, the records that Coy turned over to the board on thumb drive do not contain any records of the lawsuit.
Coy was visibly upset that the board instructed their attorney to “demand” that all previous board records be turned over, and that he considered this action “in-courteous” and insulting. Coy stated on the record that all of the records of the DDA during his tenure as treasurer have been turned over. He stated that the plaintiff in the lawsuit, Arden Weatherford, who is now a sitting member of the DDA board of directors, should have all or most of the records regarding the lawsuit. Coy recommended that if none of those remedies sufficed, that the board could access the email accounts of board during the lawsuit, which will contain the records.
The problem with that solution, however, is that the current board apparently, “does not have access to the previous board’s email accounts,” according to Coy. “If that is the case it should be noted for the record that the board should explain what happened to that large amount of public record and why it’s no longer available.” On that point, Perry asked Coy if he was administrator of the previous board’s website and if Coy was able to delete emails. Coy said he had access but not the authority to delete emails.
Coy did acknowledge that in the past “retention” of records by the city have gone missing. He said, “Large amounts of DDA records have gone missing.”
Moreover, Coy further cited his desire to help the DDA in any way he could regarding questions and actions taken by the previous board, in an effort to put the bad blood between Perry and the previous board to rest.
Woodland Station Update
As for an update on the Woodland Station development, another hurdle has come to delay the project yet again.
The lawyers involved want an amendment to the development and disposition agreement to be made before the contract is signed.
While this delay should be settled quickly, it is yet another in a long list of delays that the TAVA development group has had to endure while trying to purchase the property and get going on construction. They have announced plans for an ambitious multi-use development, featuring a restaurant, event center, brew pub, culinary school, retail, housing and more. They have made a bid to purchase the property that the current board has wanted to accept.
Once this issue is resolved, the matter is expected to go to city council for consideration of whether the sale is commensurate with the law regarding the sale being of “fair value.”