Candidate steps up to replace Taylor

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Randy Stein has thrown his hat in the ring to replace term-limited Littleton City Councilor Jim Taylor in District 1. He is the only candidate seeking the seat so far.

Stein is perhaps best known locally for renovating eight buildings downtown, including the one that formerly housed Opus restaurant, into what he calls a “synergistic mixed-use project.”

“My goal at the time was to create sustainable value for the future while honoring the broad and deep history bequeathed to us by previous generations,” he said in a press release. “(It’s) a message that holds considerable meaning today, in light of the significant number of recent rezoning applications and other proposed land-use modifications pending before council. I understand the development side, and as a longtime and committed Littleton resident, I’d like to give back to the community by helping to forge positive alliances and to lessen the disharmony that I believe has grown considerably in our small town.”

Stein is a founding director of Skeena Holdings, a development company focusing on underutilized assets and the surrounding community. He’s also a professional mediator and a lobbyist working with state legislators to “effect reform in land-use and homeowners-association legislation,” according to the press release.

A fourth-generation Coloradan, Stein moved to Littleton in 1989. He renovated a circa-1900 farmhouse on Windermere Street and later the historic “Gallup House” across from the Littleton Museum. In 2004, he moved into a 1911 bungalow in downtown Littleton, adjacent to the second phase of Nevada Place apartments. Council approved that project in January, over the objections of Stein and many others.

“Council’s discussion following the (first) public hearing left me with the unpleasant and uncomfortable feeling that they had already determined to approve the rezoning,” he said at the time. “I, along with many of my neighbors, have determined that the rezoning is a ‘done deal,’ so there is probably no point in even attending the (final) hearing.”

Stein earned recognition from the Denver Metropolitan Commercial Association of Realtors for “Transaction of the Year” for a project he negotiated in 1996, and has several awards for his mediation work. He graduated with honors from Colorado College in 1979 with a bachelor of arts in international affairs. He’s a professional ski instructor and lacrosse official, and he coached tennis at Heritage High School in 2007.

Stein becomes the fifth person to join the race. Bruce Beckman and Bruce Stahlman both want to retain their at-large seats but are being challenged by newcomer John Watson. Nobody has yet stepped up to challenge Phil Cernanec in District 3.

Council is currently considering whether to ask voters to approve a 3 percent city sales tax on both retail marijuana sales and lodging, and a citizens’ group is trying to petition two other items onto the ballot. The first would require the seven-member council to pass rezoning requests with a supermajority of five councilors, under certain circumstances, and the second would limit council’s use of executive sessions.

Five people have officially declared bids for seats on the Littleton Public Schools Board of Education: Dallas Jones, Kelly Perez, Robert Reichert, Jack Reutzer and Carrie Warren-Gully. The current board will decide later this month whether to also place an $80 million bond issue on the ballot.

Littleton’s municipal election is Nov. 5.

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