Hayden developers withdraw fee waiver request

Town Council was asked for water base rates for Redstone to be waived

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— After a lengthy discussion at the Hayden Town Council meeting Thursday, the group that plans to redevelop the Red­­stone Motel in Hayden withdrew its request to have water base rates waived for three years.

Developers David Josfan, Chris Paoli and Ben Spiegel had requested that the fees be waived because the taps are no longer in use. The developers said they still would pay the tap fees for water that serves the hotel but not those that were intended for trailers, which have been removed.

Not paying the fees would save the developers about $2,600 annually.

“All we’re really trying to do is keep the motel open,” Josfan said. He added that the developers could shut it down, but that to redevelop they think it’s important to continue having a presence on Hayden’s main street.

Town Manager David Torgler had recommended that the Town Council deny the request. He said Hayden recently raised tap fees and base rates in an effort to make the water fund support itself.

“It’s nothing malicious against the Redstone,” Torgler said. “We have an obligation to our water fund to reasonably finance it.”

The developers were told they could have the water taps removed if they didn’t want to pay the base rates. But the developers said the taps may be needed for the redevelopment of the motel and it would be costly to remove and replace them later.

Before the Town Council voted, Paoli asked to withdraw the request and return later. He said the developers need to figure out how much water they actually need and what they want to do in spring.

Paoli said they are in the third year of a three-year plan to redevelop the motel and it likely would be another two or three years before that happens. Like Josfan, he said they would like to keep the Redstone operating.

“In the mean time, we’ll clean it up and make it more of an asset for the community, which is what I think you want,” Paoli said.

In other action, the Town Council proclaimed today Chuck Grobe Day for his more than 30 years serving Hayden, which included the Hayden Planning Commission, Town Council and six months as interim town manager.

Grobe stepped down from the council in November, just weeks after he was elected mayor. He and his wife, Julie, moved to Craig.

“It’s been a pleasure to serve the town these years,” he said, his voice breaking. “It was a tough decision. I know that you guys are going to carry on great. It’s a great town board.”

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