2020-08-11 Moab City Council Meeting Report

Workshop: Presentation of Greenhouse Gas Inventory for Grand County and the City of Moab

The City of Moab, as a result of its engagement on climate issues with other “mountain” towns, was able to participate in a sponsored program to develop GHG inventories for such communities. In partnership with Grand County, City staff and a shared consultant (Claire Buysse) developed a GHG Inventory report for the Moab community. This report provides estimates of greenhouse gas emissions resulting from activities in Grand County as a whole in 2018, which will set a baseline for future emissions reductions. This analysis found that activity and sources in Grand County was responsible for emitting 597,969 metric tons of CO2e in the base year 2018, with emissions from the transportation contributing the most to this total. The report details methodology, emissions/sector, scope of local government influence on emissions, and projected change over the next ten years. Next steps will be to set intermediate targets, develop and implement a climate action plan, and monitor progress.

Selections from Council Reports

  • Council has received a request for support in getting the health dept. to report, not just absolute COVID numbers, but rolling seven day average of new cases/100,000, and ratio of positives to total tests, per the advice of multiple top level authorities regarding metrics to monitor. Two council members reiterated this request, although the City’s influence in the matter is ambiguous at best.
  • Several council members reported contact from a developer wanting to discuss a pre-annexation agreement, and that the message from the city was they should go through the standard public annexation process.
  • Three of the council members reported on the Arches Hotspot Regional Coordinating Committee progress towards developing, with the assistance of City engineering, conceptual plans to redesign some downtown off-main streets for more parking, landscaping, and other uses for the current oceans of asphalt. A public survey on the topic will be started shortly.
  • Rep on Travel Council reported that this year chain hotel occupancy is down 44%, avg. room rate down 22%, NPs visitation down 71% through end of May. A larger river company reports that physical distancing has reduced their capacity 60% and their business proportionally, although running as many boats as ever; during initial period of masking they gave out thousands, now all their customers arrive with their own and are fine with using them.

Lionsback Resort Master Planned Development recap and update

Following the end of the lawsuit regarding LB, and the anticipated development under the original 2008 entitlements, staff gave a recap of those agreements and current work. 50 hotel suites, about 189 “residential” units/STRs, and 18 staff housing units. There is a groundwater protection plan that was developed at time of approvals, which all are aware of and designing to. There is utility work going on currently to connect the development to City water and sewer. There is a rumor that that work has been paid for by an allocation granted by the state legislature, although details on this are lacking and staff didn’t seem to know. City inspection engineer is on site daily to monitor the work. Post development the city will take over maintenance of the portion of Sand Flats that is in the County between LB and the Moab Landfill. An application for some version of Phase 1, possibly all residences rather than the original P1 which included the hotel, seems possible in the near future. Staff reported that they are working to optimize the work and entitlement interpretation to minimize long term cost and liability to the city, within the constraints of the earlier agreements. Council raised concerns about traffic impacts, and it seems like there is some provision for mitigating effects as they become known, although other development south of the Sand Flats intersection in Spanish Valley will also add to the Mill Creek Drive traffic load, too.