01-0495R

RESOLUTION SETTING FORTH PROCEDURE FOR CONSIDERATION OF WORK PERMIT APPLICATION OF SPIRIT RIDGE L.L.C.

BY COUNCILORS GILBERT, STEWART AND STOVER:

        WHEREAS, the state law that established the Spirit Mountain recreation area requires the developer to obtain a work permit from the city council, after the planning commission and the parks and recreation commission have held a public hearing and made recommendations; and

        WHEREAS, the state law requires the planning commission, working jointly with the parks and recreation commission, to "attach appropriate conditions and safeguards to insure compliance" with the requirement to balance promotion of recreation with preservation of the natural environment; and

        WHEREAS, in its order dated October 24, 2000, the court affirmed the obligations of the developer under state law and stated that "the lease places responsibility upon Spirit Ridge to obtain all required permits before going forward with the project. The lease also provides for Spirit Ridge to minimize environmental impact. Only after Spirit Ridge has satisfied these contingencies can the city of Duluth give final approval of the project"; and

        WHEREAS, in its order dated November 17, 2000, the court further stated that "the project is subject to extensive federal, state and local permit controls and in fact is contingent upon obtaining such permits. Project compliance with these permit regulations weighs heavily in favor of a finding of no significant environmental impact. The proposed mitigation measures are more than vague statements of good intentions"; and

        WHEREAS, the parks and recreation commission on June 13, 2000, voted to recommend approval of the work permit without holding a public hearing.

        NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED:
        (a)     That all variance requests and permit applications be referred to the EAC for review and recommendations for approval or disapproval, and, if approved, that the EAC recommend to the planning commission such specific safeguards and conditions as it deems necessary;
        (b)     That the planning commission and parks and recreation commission hold a public hearing(s) to gather public comment before they consider the application for a work permit;
        (c)     That the city attach written conditions and safeguards as approved by the planning commission to any work permit to insure that the developer complies with promises made in the environmental assessment worksheet and to otherwise insure compliance with the requirement to balance promotion of recreation with preservation of the natural environment; and
        (d)     That city staff review the documents provided by the developer as part of its application for a work permit and prepare a summary of the documents for the council, including a summary of the permits to be addressed by the documents and a time line for necessary actions.



STATEMENT OF PURPOSE:  This resolution is to insure that all environmental issues applicable to the application of Spirit Ridge L.L.C for a work permit to construct the hotel and golf course development at Spirit Mountain are adequately reviewed and that appropriate conditions are attached to any approval of such a work permit.