Nestlé Waters Chaffee County Project: Commissioners delay deliberations awaiting $122,890 in fees

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From The Pueblo Chieftain (Tracy Harmon):

Chaffee County Attorney Jennifer Davis told the commission that county code indicates that when fees exceed a deposit, the applicant has 10 days to submit certified funds which are the full difference between the deposit and the balance. According to a seven-page spreadsheet obtained by The Pueblo Chieftain, Nestle made $33,320 in deposits and still owes $122,890 of the total $156,210 application fee bill. The spreadsheet, which was submitted to Nestle on May 21, gives a detailed description of the date and types of charges ranging from postage fees to legal ad costs.

It also includes billings for the time county staff have spent working on the proposal and consultant fees. Chaffee County Planning Engineer Don Reimer, for example, spent 640 hours on the proposal through April 30 at a cost of $28,800 to the county. However, Nestle Waters North America representative Bruce Lauerman said, “The spreadsheet was not very clear – this is just poor accounting and I cannot express it any other way.” At his request, county representatives sent another invoice June 2. Lauerman said that invoice also was inadequate. Lauerman said he did not find out until Monday that failure to pay all the expenses incurred by the county could stall a decision. “We would like to pay our bill but this (invoice) will not get past Kentucky (Nestle officials),” Lauerman said. “I don’t think the county followed their own code here.”

More Coyote Gulch coverage here and here.

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