Judge orders town of Pagosa Springs to make executive session recording public

The Pagosa Springs Sun: Judge Gregory G. Lyman of the 6th Judicial District has ordered the Town of Pagosa Springs to “make available for inspection,” 42 minutes of a recording of town council’s executive session from Sept. 17 of last year.

The order was filed Aug. 8 in the suit captioned William Hudson v. April Hessman, Town Clerk, which challenges the legality of council’s action in allowing a “contract adversary” to participate in the executive session.

Principals of the Springs Partners LLC were the persons referred to in the suit as contract adversaries.

According to the agenda for council’s Sept. 17, 2015, meeting, the executive session was held in connection with “Determining Positions Relative to Matters that may be Subject to Negotiations, Developing Strategy for Negotiations, and Instructing Negotiators,” regarding a possible “Revision to Springs Partners 10 Year Vested Right Agreement.”

Lyman’s order stated that he had privately reviewed the recording of the executive session, consistent with his prior order in the case granting plaintiff and local resident Bill Hudson’s motion.

Hudson’s motion called for review of the recording by Lyman in order to make the legal assessment whether the executive session had met the requirements of Colorado law.

Lyman’s order describes the recorded discussion between council and Springs Partners as “candid and informative.” It notes that, during the executive session, the town expressed concerns revolving around construction of a bridge over the San Juan River as allowed in the vested rights agreement.

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