Lamar City Council Discusses Future Meetings and Projects



Several meetings, planning sessions and future events were highlighted during the Lamar City Council’s February 28th meeting.

Mayor Kirk Crespin said he and City Administrator, Rob Evans, met with the Prowers County Commissioners on February 22nd, to discuss what updates might be needed for the 3 Mile Intergovernmental Agreement between both parties.  Originated in 1984 and updated in 2004 following a twenty-year continuation, the deadline for decisions to continue and/or alter the IGA is pending for 2024.  The Agreement had its origins from two documents, the City of Lamar Comprehensive Plan and the Prowers County Master Plan, both outlining a scope of potential future economic development.  Crespin said additional meetings will be scheduled for the development of a new master plan to better serve the city and the county.

A luncheon invitation is being offered to the City Council of La Junta by Lamar officials to foster a cooperative spirit between both communities.  The tentative meeting date for the work session will be March 15th.  A meeting of this nature was held a number of years ago, basically as an informal means of sharing information and developing an open dialogue about common interests between both groups.  Mayor Crespin said it would also be an opportunity to talk about sharing costs on some future projects and just developing and sharing ideas on how to improve municipal amenities for their residents.

The council is moving rapidly to announcing the location of a Dutch-treat, community dinner, Wednesday, March 2nd at 6:30pm to allow area residents and the council to get together to discuss interests of concern and future municipal projects that will soon be underway.  An announcement will be made for a specific location.

City Administrator, Rob Evans, noted that his Wednesday communication coffee sessions have been pretty well, well-received.  “We just get together and talk about things in general,” he explained, saying he’s noticed a few more people dropping by the weekly locations to just sit back and chat for an hour or so.  The next sessions have been set for 7am at the Lamar Truck Plaza on March 9th, Hickory House on the 16th, McDonalds on the 23rd and the Pit Stop on March 30th.

Evans said the city is open to applications from residents who want to act in an advisory capacity on several boards and committees.  “We have two openings on Parks and Recreation, one on Planning and Zoning, two on the Tree Board and Three on the Lamar Historic Preservation Advisory Board and those three are for three year terms,” he added, saying he and the council would appreciate anyone from the city to feel free to apply for the positions which usually open every February at the end of a one-year cycle.

Two residents addressed the council Monday during the public comment portion of the meeting.  Belinda Sturges, distributed to council members, a manual for resource information she had compiled and read from an accompanying letter she said explained her actions and attendance at council meetings.  She said she has been contacted by friends or others who have concerns about city programs or agendas, but who are fearful of presenting them to the council for, as she stated, “being subject to some type of negative response by city code, enforcement, the city police or other agency” if they voice their opinions.  She added that a city can’t flourish when people are afraid to communicate with elected officials and offered that a work session be held by the council so she can present those concerns.  Brent Bates asked if City Attorney, Lance Clark, could email him with city regulations which he said prohibits residents from asking post session questions of the council.

Mayor Crespin explained that beyond what the city and council currently does to maintain open door policies of communication for all citizens, he just doesn’t know what else could be done. “For the past 18 months, we’ve posted council meetings on facebook if people don’t want to or can’t attend and they can email or message their questions at that time.  The council has hosted various meet-and-greet sessions where people can approach us, call us on the phone, stop us at Walmart with an issue or question about something.  We want to hear from them.”  For about the past ten-years, pre-Covid, the council has routinely held monthly informal breakfast sessions at various restaurants which have been publicized in advance.

Crespin said the council and the city will be involved in the near future with development projects.  In about two weeks, ground-breaking will take place to install EV charging stations at points along East Beech Street, adjacent to the Lamar Chamber of Commerce and Welcome Center.  Tesla Super Charger and Charge Point Super Charger stations will be erected at these sites.  Some parking areas will have to be altered to accommodate the stations which will charge electric vehicles, mostly for those traveling through this portion of southeast Colorado.

Crespin said developments for the Escondido Park soccer field are moving forward, as well as the city’s water and waste/water projects, airport development, removing the blue, WHO building on North Main Street to make way for a new enterprise and on a municipal level, the council will work to put some more teeth in ordinances regarding truck parking in the city limits as well as finalize the ordinance for listing abandoned or vacated buildings in Lamar.
By Russ Baldwin

Filed Under: City of LamarConsumer IssuesEconomyFeaturedTransportationUtilities


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