THINC (Treasure Hill Impact Neighborhood Coalition) remains vigilant in our opposition to the proposed Treasure Hill development in historic old town Park City. City Hall is now fast tracking a change in the LMC (Land Management Code) to allow for a city appointed hearing officer to hear appeals of Planning Commission decisions. The hearing officer could hear these appeals in place of our elected city council. This procedure may give the city council some flexibility on some matters, but THINC questions whether it is appropriate in the matter of Treasure Hill.
Given the 20+ year history of the Treasure Hill project and the involvement of the city council over the years, is a hearing officer (possibly from outside Summit County) really in the best position to hear an appeal on this project? Will a hearing officer have a good understanding of the dramatic changes in the community since the project’s MPD was approved? Isn’t our elected city council, people who live in this town, hike on the trails, sit in the traffic, participate in this community, and understand the concerns of the people, in the best position to determine whether a project of this magnitude is appropriate for this town? While a hearing officer may insulate the city council from potential due process or conflict of interest challenges by the Sweeney’s, the community’s interests as a whole need to be represented and protected by those who we elected to serve our community.
THINC strongly encourages the City to involve the community in the negotiation of any modifications to the plans for Treasure and make the entire process as transparent as possible. We’ve all been living with the threat of this project for a long time and it would be unacceptable for the public to be cut out as this critical juncture.
THINC supports the concept of a hearing officer, but we want city council to carefully consider whether a hearing officer is really in the best position to evaluate the Treasure project and the process that has been going on for 20+ years. We remain concerned that city council may remove themselves from the largest decision they may ever be asked to make — before the process has fully played out before the planning commission and the issues to be appealed are even known!
Thank you very much,
Brian Van Hecke