By Mary Jo Coulehan | Pagosa Springs Area Chamber of Commerce
This is a reminder to our business community to get your feedback to the Town of Pagosa Springs on its upcoming Land Use and Development Code (LUDC) changes by Friday, Aug. 18.
The majority of businesses along the U.S. 160 corridor are annexed into the town. Therefore, these changes affect our business community. Whether in support of or commenting on the proposed changes, your business voice is important.
Of special note are the sign changes proposed. The town is looking for business input. How can you find out about the proposed changes? The easiest way to find the proposed LUDC sign code and other changes is at www.mypagosa.org/ludc-update. At this website, you can give your input on the sign changes as well as other topics in the draft.
The town’s objectives for the proposed sign code changes are intended to preserve and maintain our mountain town aesthetic while balancing business owners’ needs for effective and attractive signage. Primary changes include aligning sign heights and overall sizes with vehicle speeds.
Signs can be a powerful indicator for pedestrian-oriented areas versus auto-centric ones, which impact safety and creates a sense of place. The proposed changes result in more, but smaller, sign districts. Specific standards for height and size are tailored to those districts and corresponding vehicle speeds. Keep in mind, the LUDC only applies to properties in the town boundary and not in unincorporated Archuleta County.
The other objective is to ensure free speech rights are preserved and protected by eliminating any content-specific regulations. For example, in some sign areas, the signage proposal is to reduce the square footage in height and width. What may have been 25 square feet could be 20 or 16 square feet to better align with the character of the district. Verbiage on the sign is also specified to be “content neutral” to ensure freedom of speech.
Please take the time to look at your sign and the signs around your business and interpret how these changes might positively or negatively affect your business community.
Two free educational
There will be a free one-on-one consulting opportunity with Small Business Development Center consultant and QuickBooks Pro trainer Nelly Burns on Aug. 24.
Those business owners or managers who are interested in getting questions answered that you might have about your QuickBooks and financial statements can schedule a one-hour session with Burns.
Find out how you can work your inventory better, read your financials better or just get some questions answered about any problems you might be having with QuickBooks.
There are only two slots remaining, so don’t wait to sign up for this important, free service for your business.
The other free class that will be held will be on Aug. 30 at 4 p.m., when an attorney and accountant will be on hand to discuss business entities (LLC vs. S or C Corp), tax implications and asset protection.
If you have already set up your business, did you do it correctly? Are you protecting your personal from your professional assets? Why should you choose one tax designation over another, and which would be best for you?
Sole proprietors, subcontractors or gig workers should definitely attend this free class. An hour of your time could save you lots of dollars or lots of future headaches.
The class will be held at the Chamber of Commerce at 105 Hot Springs Blvd. To register, visit www.pagosachamber.com and go to the events calendar and click on the class listed on Aug. 30.
Volunteer opportunities open
Volunteer opportunities are open for some upcoming Chamber events: ColorFest, Sept. 15 and 16, and manning the beer garden at the Mountain Chile Cha Cha on Sept. 23.
To sign up for either event, visit the Chamber website at www.pagosachamber.com. Click on either graphic under Community and Chamber News that takes you to the events.
For ColorFest, there are a number of various tasks you can volunteer for including decorating, set-up, clean-up, or helping our restaurants or brewers.
To find out more about volunteering, you can also call Mary Jo at the Chamber at (970) 264-2360.