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Frederick denies request for 7,000-volt electric security fence

FREDERICK — A recreational vehicle dealer in Frederick would like to install a 10-foot electric fence around its property near Interstate 25. The board of trustees, however, has rejected the proposal.

In a unanimous vote, the town board determined that the request did not meet the town’s criteria for a variance.

Cruise America RV Rental and Sales, 4180 Busch Place, through its security vendor Amarok LLC of Columbia, South Carolina, requested a variance of the town’s land use code to install a battery-charged, 7,000-volt electric fence around its 2.15-acre site that includes a large warehouse/office building and an outdoor, fenced sales and rental display area.

The proposal comes as a result of what Cruise America, a national RV rental and sales company, sees as increases in crime affecting its operations. As a representative explained, it isn’t so much theft of vehicles, although that has happened, but instead a rampant theft of catalytic converters that can take vehicles out of commission, thus disrupting the vacation plans of customers from around the world. 

Cruise America has installed electric barriers around other locations in the country. In Frederick, three criminal incidents have occurred in the area of the RV location, but all happened prior to its current use, staff wrote in its materials to the board.

Frederick staff opposed the proposal because it would create a precedent and because staff determined that, while perhaps not fatal to those who might touch it, it would be detrimental overall.

“The intent of the electric fence charged with 7,000 volts is to deliver a highly unpleasant shock. This alone is detrimental to the public good,” staff wrote in the materials provided to the board.

Cruise America, in its application, said that “the most effective crime deterrent system” is the electric perimeter fence. 

Board member Windi Padia moved to deny the request. “It’s not the way to do it here in Frederick,” she said.

In other business, the board of trustees approved a proposal to apply for a Colorado Department of Local Affairs Rural Economic Development Initiative Grant to produce an industry cluster study.

Such a study might determine how the town could best capitalize, for example, on the recent $725-million expansion of Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: A). The study might show how building within the life sciences sector, where Agilent operates, could benefit the community economically.

By promoting the cluster, the town would attempt to grow employment and strengthen its economic position. Other economic clusters might also be identified, Maxwell Daffron, the town’s economic development manager, told the board.

The unanimously approved proposal permits the town to apply for a $25,000 grant to be matched by $25,000 of town funding.

A site plan shows the proximity of the building, property and where the fence would be installed. Source: Frederick town board documents

Source: BizWest