Co-op Ordinance Second Reading

October 11th: Second Reading – Council Discussion

The City Council continued the Second Reading after the October 4th public hearing.  On October 11th, the council discussed the co-op ordinance among themselves and city staff.

Here’s the video of the October 11th Council discussion:

Unfortunately, most of our City Council chose to completely disregard your input, as they revealed in their special meeting on October 11th. You can read about it in the Daily Camera: Boulder council raises co-op occupancy. The Council handed the co-op special interest groups everything they had demanded – actually more than they demanded.

BNA members have produced detailed Notes on the October 11th City Council Co-op Discussion.

Here’s a Quick Summary:

  • Co-ops will be allowed 12 to 15 residents in houses as small as 2000 square feet. And the City Manager is authorized to grant exceptions even to this ridiculous number.
  • Co-ops will be allowed in every type of zoning district, include all low and medium density residential zones.
  • There is no requirement for real equity co-ops. The “equity co-op” concept that the council endorsed would actually require only partial ownership with options to rent out a significant portion of the co-op property.
  • Up to 14 rental co-ops and tax-exempt co-ops will be created every year for the foreseeable future, with no end in sight.
  • There are no requirements for affordability or rent limitations in a rental co-op. Co-ops can freely outbid families for rental houses.
  • There will be no requirement for notification of neighborhood residents or property owners prior to a co-op moving into the neighborhood.
  • Oversight of the co-op program will likely be delegated to the co-op advocates themselves.

To be fair, there were a few minor concessions to neighborhoods:  co-ops must be separated by at least 500 feet, and there were vague promises that enforcement would be “improved”, but only after the co-op ordinance goes into effect. Take a look at the city’s licensed rental property map: (, and find out how many rental properties are within 500 feet of your house!

October 4th: Second Reading with Public Hearing

The City Council heard public testimony on the Second Reading of the Cooperative Housing Ordinance on October 4th.   The co-op activists had a huge turnout, but BNA, PLAN-Boulder, and many other concerned citizens presented some very compelling arguments against the proposed ordinance.   The hearing ran late into the evening, and City Council decided not to start their discussion at that late hour. Instead, they scheduled a special session for October 11.

Here’s the video of the October 4th hearing:

 What’s Next?

After the discussion at the October 11th special session, the council directed City Attorney Tom Carr to revise the draft ordinance for a re-discussion at a future meeting.   This discussion is tentatively scheduled for December 6th.  This will be another continuation of the “Second Reading,” meaning there will be no opportunity for public comment at the meeting.  However, you can always send more comments to City Council by email:

[Return to The Cooperative Housing Proposal main page.]