The agricultural community has expressed to the county that they face a variety of significant challenges. Staff is working with the community to identify and address potential issues that will better position farmers and growers to succeed and thrive in Boulder County. In late 2017 a team of staff from Boulder County Land Use, Public Health, and Parks & Open Space departments and CSU Extension launched the Agricultural Outreach Project to identify topics and prioritize for updates to the Land Use Code and related regulations and programs.
Members of the agricultural community have provided input through online comments, an open house in January, and topic-focused public meetings in March, 2018. Staff will draw on the valuable input provided at recent meetings as we draft updates to the Land Use Code during the next several months.
Staff will circulate a survey in May to gather more detailed feedback on specific topics. The survey will include focused questions identified as important based on input from the recent meetings. The survey will help staff drill down to the greater level of detail needed to inform Land Use Code updates. We strongly encourage as many members of the agricultural community as possible to take the survey (even if you already participated in recent meetings) so we have a robust data set to work with when drafting Land Use Code updates. Please keep an eye out for the survey in early May!
Agricultural Outreach Project Summary of Public Comments to Date:
- Summary of March 2018 Public Meetings
- Summary of Jan. 18, 2018 Open House and online comments
- Summary of Jan. 18, 2018 Open House and online comments in tabular format
Subscribe to the Agriculture Outreach Project news list to receive updates via email or text message.
Additional Opportunities to Provide Input
A team of staff from Boulder County Land Use, Public Health, Parks & Open Space, and CSU Extension would like to hear from the community regarding the how the current Land Use Code and other regulations affect agricultural operations. Public input about what is working well and what could be improved will be used to update Land Use code and Boulder County staff priorities. Staff is looking for agricultural producers to provide responses to the following types of questions:1
- What are some examples of situations where county rules, regulations, or procedures have impacted your operation?
- What are some specific conflicts or confusion you have with county regulations? (Land Use Code, Building Code, Public Health)
While we are accepting comments on a variety of issues specific to agricultural operations in Boulder County, the intent of the project is to identify current priorities for Land Use Code updates and related regulations and programs. Often, the challenges facing the agriculture community are complicated and are related to regulations in multiple county departments.
The use of genetically engineered (GE) herbicide-resistant crops on county-owned open space agricultural land is a separate topic not related to the Land Use Code and therefore not part of this process. Please visit the Cropland Policy page for more information.
How To Participate
Initial outreach feedback is posted (view survey responses) to allow other community members to view. Staff is also happy to meet in person or speak over the phone. Input can be provided via the staff contacts listed below.
Staff is currently reviewing and summarizing comments. Additional comments will be accepted throughout the Agricultural Outreach process and incorporated as the process continues.
Meetings will be announced when scheduled.
Topic-focused community meetings, March 8 and 14, 2018
Staff held two topic-focused community meetings on March 8 and 14, on Farm Sales and Farm Events, and Hoop Houses, Greenhouses and Housing.
The purpose of the meetings was to gain a deeper understanding of some of the specific needs of the community, review staff’s initial ideas, and ask some additional focused questions. The meetings helped to equip staff with more detailed information to guide preparation of proposed Land Use code revisions. Staff is processing the input received, as well as any follow up comments received through the end of March.
An online survey is planned for launch in May, 2018. The survey questions will be informed by input received to date, and will be aimed at gathering both baseline information on current agricultural activity, and additional data needed to help shape revised code language. Through that survey we hope to capture responses from a greater number of participants in Boulder County’s agriculture community.
Open House, Jan. 18, 2018
Staff conducted an open house to introduce the project, provide information, review the feedback received, and discuss the current Boulder County Land Use Code.
County staff is available to discuss this project with interested parties and answer questions:
- Nicole Wobus, Boulder County Land Use, 720-564-2298
- Jeff Moline, Boulder County Parks & Open Space, 303-678-6270
- Blake Cooper, Boulder County Parks & Open Space, 303-678-6234
- Adrian Card, CSU Extension, 303-678-6383
1 At an earlier stage of the Agricultural Outreach Project staff also gathered input on topics related to Parks & Open Space Department leases. Parks & Open Space Department staff values the feedback received on that topic up to this point and will address those points through a separate process.