Friday, May 18, 2018

This Week in Pics

In celebration and recognition of Police Week, May 13-19, 2018, Mesa County Sheriff's Office Color Guard presents the colors at the administrative public hearing of the Mesa County Commissioners on Monday.

Mesa County Sheriff's Office Color Guard proceeds to the public hearing room to present the colors in honor of Police Week, which honors the brave men and women who work to serve and protect our community.

This week, the Board of Mesa County Commissioners honored law enforcement by declaring May 13-19, 2018, as Police Week in Mesa County.
Elections hosted a tour of their office with some of the 2018 Primary Election candidates to help acclimate them with important election dates and processes.
Commissioner Scott McInnis talks to KKCO 11 News Anchor Crispin Havener about why Mesa County is a great place to live. See the interview at

On Monday, Officer Barnes coaxed a dog (tiny troublemaker) that had been running at large and had been difficult to catch. 
On Wednesday, Mesa County Criminal Justice Services Shift Supervisor James Bruner, left, and Criminal Justice Officer Chad Music grilled burgers to help raise funds for the CJSD Partners Superstars Team.  

 CJSD hosted an employee BBQ to benefit Mesa County Partners, a program that makes a difference in the lives of young people by helping them develop a positive self-image, a sense of belonging, and acceptance of responsibility for their actions.

Great turnout at CJSD's fundraising event to benefit Mesa County Partners.

Mesa County employees enjoy food and refreshments at CJSD's fundraising BBQ luncheon. Tickets for the meal were priced at $10 to raise money for Partners, a local youth program. 

Representing the Clerk's office, Bobbie Gross and Sheila Reiner attended the ThinkHR training offered at the Workforce building on Wednesday.
Mary Cornforth, left, and Katie Goddeyne of MCPH volunteered for Kids Aid on Friday as part of their Grand Valley Leadership Academy Service Learning Project.

Megan Ballard from Adult Services reads her nomination for May Values Champion.
Michael Smith from the Workforce Center reads his team nomination for Values Champion.
May Values Champions and nominees: Linda Fino, Amanda Pennington, Tracey Garchar, Kylie Mayfield, Rhonda Johnson, Victor Carreras, Celina Kirnberger, Erika Rodiguez, Kasey Watts.
Mesa County Information Technology (IT) staff got together to go over team updates and project status reports, over pie.

No pie shortage here. No wonder everyone in IT is so sweet.
Mesa County Fairgrounds staff is hard at work getting the ground ready for the TRAXXAS Monster Truck show.

A lot of preparation work happens behind the scenes before shows are hosted at the Mesa County Fairgrounds.

R-5 High School students visit the Mesa County Compost facility to learn about organic matter.

R-5 students took a tour of the compost facility and learned about why keeping green waste out of the landfill and diverting it to a compost facility is important.

The collected organic matter goes to the compost facility at the Mesa County Landfill and is turned into compost instead of being buried with trash that is not being recycled.

Mesa County Solid Waste Director Barret Jensen teaches students how organic matter is processed and converted into compost.

Mesa County Solid Waste Director Barret Jensen shows students how Mesa Magic is made and how it is packaged. 

Mesa Magic, a compost product, is low in salt and high in organic matter. Mesa Magic is screened to 1/2" minus and 1/4" minus, which is excellent for gardens and soil building before seeding or top dressing lawns and adding to planters.

 R-5 High School students received hands-on training on how to process and bag compost. 

Mesa Magic is an approved participant in the United States Composting Council's Seal of Testing Assurance program.

As part of an outdoor project day, R-5 students visited the Mesa County Compost facility and got to take the fruits of their labor. 


Mesa County Solid Waste Management donated several bags of compost to R-5 High School.

The Board of Mesa County Commissioners kicks off the 2018 Inside Mesa County (IMC) class. What’s Inside Mesa County? It is a 9-week, in-depth class that allows citizens to look inside every aspect of Mesa County government.

IMC attendees get to hear what a day in the “life of a Mesa County Commissioner” looks like from Commissioner Scott McInnis' perspective. Future sessions will feature the Assessor, Clerk and Recorder, County Attorney, Coroner, District Attorney, Sheriff, Surveyor, and Treasurer, as well as Animal Services, Criminal Justice Services, Department of Human Services, Public Health, and Public Works.
It’s not every day you see a wall removed! This panel was removed as part of a project to fix the kitchen at the detention facility. Meals are being served through a temporary kitchen while crews fix this one.

County Offices Closed on Memorial Day

Many Mesa County offices will be closed Monday, May 28, 2018, in observance of Memorial Day.

This closure includes:
Administration, Assessor, County Commissioners, County Attorney, Financial Services, Human Resources, IT, Surveyor, Treasurer (544 Rood Ave.)
Clerk & Recorder: Motor Vehicle, Recording, Elections, Clerk to the Board (200 S. Spruce St.)
District Attorney's Office and the Justice Center (125 N. Spruce St.)
Department of Human Services (510 29 1/2 Road)
Facilities and Fairgrounds (2785 U.S. Hwy. 50)
Public Health (510 29 1/2 Road)
Public Works, Building, and Planning (971 Coffman Road & 200 S. Spruce St.)
Regional Transportation Planning Office (525 S. Sixth St.)
Sheriff’s Office: Records and Civil Divisions (215 Rice St.)
Solid Waste Campus: Composting, Hazardous Waste, Landfill and Transfer Stations (3071 U.S. Hwy. 50)
Tri-River Area CSU Extension (2775 U.S. Hwy. 50)
Workforce Center (512 29 1/2 Road)

Alternate Hours:
Animal Services (971A Coffman Road) will be open from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.

This closure does NOT include:
Coroner's Office
Criminal Justice Services (all locations)
Sheriff's Office - Jail, Patrol, Emergency Services (215 Rice St.)

Motor Vehicle office will be closed for training June 4, 5 and 6

Mesa County’s Motor Vehicle office will be closed June 4, 5 and 6 so the staff can complete training on the state’s new Colorado Driver License, Record, Identification and Vehicle Enterprise Solution (Colorado DRIVES) system. The installation of DRIVES will update a system that is 35 years old and will provide a flexible, reliable, accurate and integrated solution for driver and vehicle services, as well as business licensing and revenue accounting.

“We have been looking forward to this update,” Mesa County Clerk & Recorder Sheila Reiner said. “DRIVES will provide us with a number of new services that will be available online.”

Customers are encouraged to skip the trip and avoid waiting in-person by utilizing online, mail and kiosk services to complete their transactions. For those requiring in-person services, the Motor Vehicle office provides tickets from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

For more information on how to complete your transaction by mail, drop-off or appointment, please visit and click “Skip the Trip.”

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Motor vehicle transaction counts are up and wait times are down

We have quite a story to share! We compared the first quarter of 2018 to the first quarter of 2017, and the total transaction counts are up, while wait times are down.

The Mesa County Clerk’s office has been working diligently to innovate ways to serve Mesa County.  Over the past year, we have advertised and promoted user-friendly resources to help residents save time and skip the trip.

“Our team has really leaned into the challenge over the past year and found smarter ways to work under the budget constraints that continue in Mesa County’s general fund,” said Mesa County Clerk & Recorder, Sheila Reiner.

“Great teams rise above adversity when they have great leadership! These statistics confirm that claim. I am proud of this team’s innovations and willingness to achieve more with less,” said Division Director, Jackie Campbell.

“Through ongoing collaboration, we have successfully improved our process to provide exceptional customer service to the citizens of Mesa County.  Key staff members have been away for training this year and there are big changes on the horizon! Can’t wait for the future,” said Motor Vehicle Manager Bobbie Gross.

Friday, May 11, 2018

This Week in Pics

Mesa County Sheriff Matt Lewis attends the Board of County Commissioners' public hearing Monday morning to accept a proclamation to honor and recognize correctional officers. Local jails, like the Mesa County Detention Facility, are complex organizations. On a basic level, a jail must provide its inmate population a number of services, including three meals a day, medical and mental health care, clothing and linens, visitation,  recreation, religious programs, as well as access to courts and attorneys. Complicating this task is the diversity of needs within the increasing inmate population while maintaining the safety and security of the 24-hour facility. In 2017, the Mesa County Detention Facility processed 6,465 people and provided more than 630,000 meals. On March 18, 2018, the Mesa County Detention Facility housed a record high 604 inmates. Learn more about Correctional Officer's Week at
The Board of County Commissioners proclaimed the week of May 6-12 as Correctional Officers Week in Mesa County. Sheriff Matt Lewis and Captain Art Smith joined the board in recognizing the professionalism and dedication of our detention deputies and staff.
 The Joint Color Guard of the Grand Junction Police Department and Mesa County Sheriff's Office presented the colors before the hearing began in honor of Correctional Officers Week.“Our detention deputies and staff play a critical role in keeping the detention facility and our community safe,” said Capt. Art Smith. “They do a difficult job that not a lot of people want to do nor have the compassion to do. That’s why it’s important for us to stop and say ‘Thank You.’”
For Correctional Officers Week, May 6-12, 2018, the Joint Color Guard of the Grand Junction Police Department and Mesa County Sheriff's Office presents the colors. In 1984, President Ronald Reagan created National Correctional Officers Week to honor the work of correctional officers and correctional personnel nationwide. In Mesa County, these professionals are known as detention deputies. Please join us in thanking all detentions professionals for not only what they do, but more importantly the personal sacrifices they make to ensure our community remains a safe place to live, work and play. 

On Monday morning, Mesa County Commissioners proclaimed May 7-11 Teacher Appreciation Week in the county. Thanks to the 2,800 School District 51 teachers for all you do! 

Mesa County Commissioners proclaimed May 2018 as Foster Parent Appreciation Month to acknowledge foster parents, volunteers, child welfare professionals, and other members of the community who help children in foster care find permanent homes. In Mesa County, nearly 300 children and youth are in safe, secure and stable foster homes. More than 180 foster and kinship families in Mesa County provide those homes. Foster parents take part in helping children and families heal and reconnect, to launch children into successful adulthood.

The Board of County Commissioners convened on Tuesday to vote on land-use items. To see what they voted on, visit

This week, Mesa County Commissioner Scott McInnis celebrated his birthday. Happy birthday, Commissioner McInnis!  
The Mesa County Employees' Association hosted a roadside cleanup. Many staff members and their families volunteered on Saturday morning to pick up trash along B 1/2 Road between 29 and 31 roads. Pictured here: Eli Jordan (IT), Michael, Greyson & Natalie Flynn (CJSD), Gene Huges (Assessor), Paul Mitts (IT), Patrick Green & Kacey Conway (Surveyor), Andy Tyler (Health), Lucy and Raven Finegan (DHS).  Not pictured: Barrett, Maranda and Piper Jensen (Solid Waste Management).

Barrett, Maranda and Piper Jensen (Solid Waste Management) made sure everyone had gloves to pick up trash. Thank you, Jensen Family! 

Jesse Redmond of Elections speaks at the Center for Independence Voter Registration event on Tuesday. Jesse fielded questions about registration and voting in the upcoming Primary. 

Olivia Pilcher from Disability Law Colorado presented on the laws around voter registration and voting rights.
Matt Vigil, Melissa Herrik and Jackie Campbell are working in Denver on DRIVES, the statewide motor vehicle software. Melissa is a subject matter expert who is assigned to work there for 18 months. Matt has been testing the system for six weeks and Jackie is there this week for managers training. Mesa County is well represented!
Sharp eyes would've received a friendly compliment from this rock that was left outside the Mesa County Central Services Building.
Administrative Specialist Alicia Ramiez helps a job seeker at the Mesa County Workforce Center.

Express Employment hosted a hiring event at the Workforce Center this week. 

 Employment Specialist Michael Smith is all smiles as he checks in job seekers during Colorado Economic Development Week activities. 

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Kathleen Larson presenting the benefits of WIC to MCPH staff at a lunch and learn this week.

Teresa Baca, WIC Educator, informing MCPH staff of the three available WIC locations.

Karla Klemm, WIC Program Manager, discussing the WICshopper app at MCPH's WIC lunch and learn.
Joe Kellerby, Child Welfare Manager, serves food during a Foster Appreciation dinner, this week. 
Animal Services Officer Barb Cutunilli plays with a stray puppy that came into the shelter.

Residents stop by the Animal Services Facility with donations for the pets at the shelter. Animal Services Officer Joe Cruz thanks them for their generous donations. 
TRAXXAS Monster Truck Tour invades the Mesa County Fairgrounds for two shows on May 12. These 10,000-pound, car crushing giants compete in racing, wheelie contests, and then rock the house with amazing freestyle action!
Paving is underway at the Mesa County Fairgrounds.

This week, the paving project at the Mesa County Fairgrounds got underway.
Mesa County Administrator Frank Whidden, left, and Commissioner Scott McInnis, right, were some of the key leaders that provided insight on important issues and progress of Mesa County's economic state at the State of the Valley panel discussion hosted by the Grand Junction Chamber. Jeff Hurd, center, moderated the event.
As part of Economic Development Week, the Grand Junction Chamber hosted the first-ever, State of the Valley. Mesa County Commissioner Scott McInnis talks about the future of the county.

Mesa County Administrator Frank Whidden talks about the importance of Mesa County being an attractive place to live, work, and raise a family for economic development.

Mesa County Workforce Center Director Curtis Englehart attended the State of the Valley presentation this week.

Information & Communications Coordinator Angeline Roles, Mesa County Department of Human Services Director Tracey Garchar and Solid Waste Director Barrett Jensen at the State of the Valley.

Mesa County Commissioner John Justman listens as local government officials give updates on economic indicators in the Grand Valley.

Commissioner John Justman visits with Ken Haptonstall, School Superintendent MCVSD 51, after the State of the Valley panel discussion ends.

Mesa County Commissioner Scott McInnis and Grand Junction Area Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Diane Schwenke.
Solid Waste Director Barrett Jensen collects all recycle items left behind at the State of the Valley. He takes his job seriously!
Mesa County Commissioner Rose Pugliese meets with a resident to discuss his vision for the future of Mesa County.

Teresa Nees with Noxious Weed & Pest Management hosted a noxious weed information booth at the Gateway Dynamite Shoot. Alan Barbee with Noxious Weed & Pest Management talks with residents at the Gateway Dynamite Shoot about preventing the spread of invasive species by remembering to Play Clean Go.
Participants had a blast at the Gateway Dynamite Shoot raising funds for the fire department.

MCPH Operations Division Director Diana Williams was part of the government leadership panel at Grand Valley Leadership Academy, this morning.