Small-town neighborhood turns out to fight annexation of trash facility

By: Alison Noon
June 7, 2013 Updated: June 7, 2013 at 8:40 pm

WOODLAND PARK - The city offices overflowed with the neighbors of a trash facility Thursday night who wanted to weigh in on an issue that turned out to be more contentious than the marijuana ban that directly followed.

At least 50 people filled every chair at the Woodland Park City Council meeting where, after four hours of debate, council deemed 1000 and 1050 County Road 231 eligible for consideration to be annexed as city land.

The annexation was proposed by Jay Baker, owner of Teller County Waste, which resides at the property where waste operations have taken place for more than a decade. The business has been in legal battle with Teller County for at least 12 years, Baker's attorney said Thursday night, pointing to an 800-page binder he called, "the big book of nothing."

Homeowners near the property complained that Baker would circumvent a lawsuit with the county and continue to disrupt the residential community if the property was claimed by the city.

If approved by city council, Baker would open a free recycling center on the property for Woodland Park residents.

"The city just wants the recycling," said resident Larry Solecki.

No county employees participated in the meeting.

The annexation issue will be open for public comment at the city council's next meeting at 7 p.m. June 27 at 220 West South Avenue in Woodland Park.

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