Friday, February 16, 2018

This Week in Pics

The Board of Mesa County Commissioners unanimously approved a resolution in support of moving the headquarters of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) from Washington, D.C. to Grand Junction. The resolution states: "It is in the best interest of counties to have the people who manage our BLM lands, and who make the decisions concerning these lands, living within the communities with high percentages of BLM land." To read the resolution, visit http://sire.mesacounty.us/sirepub/cache/2/ekh1tglaldxmnaaku2irxp10/2599496802152018120201316.PDF

Mesa County Animal Services staff members Rebecca Dillon and Barb Cutunilli, left to right, blowdry and brush, Darla, a Saint Bernard, after giving her a bath.

Darla is enjoying getting brushed and pampered by the Animal Services staff.

Darla is an eight-year-old Saint Bernard that was recently surrendered to Mesa County Animal Services and is now slated to go to a rescue.  
Mesa County Public Works leadership pauses for a picture after discussing the status of infrastructure, road, and solid waste management projects. From left to right, James Nall, Barett Jensen, Scott Mai, Peter Baier, Connie Hahn, Eric Brown and Rudy Bevan.
Mesa County Treasurer Janice Rich invites taxpayers to utilize the online resources at http://treasurer.mesacounty.us, to review property taxes owing. Colorado law requires property tax payments in two equal installments, the first being due on or before the last day of February, and the second installment to be paid no later than the 15th day of June. If you are planning to pay your property taxes in full, they are due no later than April 30th.

Mesa County Surveyor Patrick Green hands out chocolate on Valentine's Day.

On Wednesday, construction began at the Mesa County Fairgrounds, 2785 U.S. Hwy 50 in Orchard Mesa, to widen the entrance road to four lanes. 

The new four-lane entry to the fairgrounds will be completed (weather permitting) in approximately three weeks. The project's budget is $259,000.

The much-needed entry expansion will help alleviate traffic at the Mesa County Fairgrounds. 

Mesa County Commissioner Rose Pugliese and Chairwoman of Colorado Counties, Inc.'s General Government Committee discusses legislation with other Colorado commissioners Thursday morning.   

MCPH Executive Director Jeff Kuhr and Dave Allgood of KREX had fun live in the studio Friday morning before they discussed Child Care 8,000. This initiative is driving the creation of 4,000 more licensed child care slots in Mesa County by 2020. If you'd like to open a Family Home Child Care, visit health.mesacounty.us to get started! 
MCPH Executive Director Jeff Kuhr and Dave Allgood of KREX.

MCPH Executive Director Jeff Kuhr talks to Dave Allgood about Child Care 8,000, a new effort to create thousands of newly licensed child care slots and improve the quality of child care programs.

MCPH Executive Director Jeff Kuhr and KREX morning anchorJennifer Lee.

Mesa County Road and Bridge staff help get goodie bags ready for the 37th annual Mesa County Safety Fair. 

The 2018 Mesa County Safety Fair will be held at Mesa Mall, Feb. 22-23, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The Safety Fair is a free event open to the public that focuses on educating children how to be safe at home, school, and at play.

Workforce Center Case Manager Jeanne Teige is the proud winner of the Valentine's Day candy jar guessing contest hosted by the Fun Bunch. The Department of Human Services and Workforce Center's Fun Bunch group promotes unity for their employees through employee-sponsored activities.

 DHS Case Manager Lori Rienstra sports her Mardi Gras beads on Tuesday for an event sponsored by the Fun Bunch.

Many Mesa County offices will be closed Monday, Feb. 19, 2018, in observance of Presidents Day. For a detailed list of closures, visit https://goo.gl/mUj3nD.

Monday, February 12, 2018

County Offices Closed Monday for Presidents Day



Many Mesa County offices will be closed Monday, Feb. 19, 2018, in observance of Presidents 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 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)
Grand Valley Transit fixed and paratransit services (525 S. 6th St.)
Mesa County Landfill (3071 U.S. Hwy. 50)
Sheriff's Office emergency services (215 Rice St.)

Commissioners adopt a resolution supporting BLM headquarters to move to GJ

Mesa County Commissioners adopt a resolution in support of moving the headquarters of the Bureau of Land Management to Grand Junction, Colorado.

The Board of Mesa County Commissioners unanimously approved a resolution in support of moving the headquarters of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) from Washington, D.C. to Grand Junction.

The resolution states: "It is in the best interest of counties to have the people who manage our BLM lands, and who make the decisions concerning these lands, living within the communities with high percentages of BLM land."

To read the full resolution, go here or view below.


Friday, February 9, 2018

This Week in Pics

On February 8, 2016, Deputy Derek Geer was killed in the line of duty after responding to a report of a man with a gun. Deputy Geer, a Navy veteran, loving husband, and father of two, served 15 years with the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office. He was honored with the Lifesaving award in 2012 for helping revive a woman in cardiac arrest. As a final act of service and selflessness, Deputy Geer remained on life support until his organs could be donated to four different people. In December of 2016, he was awarded the Medal of Honor posthumously. He is the second Mesa County law enforcement officer to be killed in the line of duty.
The Mesa County Sheriff’s Office along with many community members paused for a moment of silence Feb. 8 at 11:15 a.m. to honor Deputy Derek Geer’s service and sacrifice. The Grand Junction Regional Communication Center aired a Code 1 Air Memorial on all law enforcement radio channels in Mesa County. Code 1 Air is a radio call used to clear all radio traffic for a critical incident.

Mesa County Sheriff's Office (MSCO) receives mail from the community to honor and remember fallen hero Deputy Derek Geer. MCSO thanks the community for all of the kindness and support they have received during this challenging time.

In remembrance of Deputy Geer and thoughts for all law enforcement, the Department of Human Services, Mesa County Workforce Center and Public Health sponsored a "Wear Blue Day" and signed thank you posters, which were delivered to the various law enforcement offices.

The Department of Human Services (DHS) Welfare After Hours Team provides a homemade meal for the Sheriff's Office in remembrance and honor of Deputy Geer. Back row: left to right, Miguel Navarro (Assessment CM), Michael Blevins (Con Ops CM), Deni Girardi (Permanency CM), Alexi Kellnhofer (Permanency Supervisor). Front Row: left to right Jacque Berry (CPCL Supervisor), Kari Daggett (Division Director / Child Welfare), Kim Espindola (Adoption CM), Amanda Pennington (Con Ops CM), Sarah Evans (Facilitator), Aletha Jenkins (Assessment Supervisor). Those on the After Hours Team that assisted but are not pictured: Caitlin Donohue (CPCL CM), Holly Nisley (Therapist), Taryn Young (Assessment CM), Ericka Sebring (Assessment CM), Kari Miracle (Adoption CM), Lisa Brutosky (Assessment Supervisor), Lynette Overmeyer (Assessment Supervisor), Joe Kellerby (CW Manager), Kiira Moore (Therapist), Sabrina Blevins (Adoption CM), Stephanie Landes (CPCL CM), Carrie Hoffman (Placement Resource Manager). All of the named staff members not only work their "regular" "normal" job during the week, but they also volunteer for all the after-hours shifts to cover the Child Welfare Hotline, which operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.

Mesa County Commissioners recognize and congratulate the Finance Department for earning the highest form of commendation in governmental accounting for the 24th year in a row. From left to right, Commissioner Scott McInnis, Accounting Manager Pam Noonan, Budget Manager Eleanor Thomas, Senior Accountant Katherine Boozell, Commissioner John Justman, Commissioner Rose Pugliese. Read more at http://blog.mesacounty.us/2018/02/finance-department-receives-excellence.html.

Mesa County Solid Waste Management staff Hope Petrie (left) and Jennifer Richardson (right) and CSU Extension Entomologist Meredith Shrader pause for a picture at the Pest Management Workshop at Two Rivers Convention Center.

Hope Petrie and Jennifer Richardson with Mesa County Solid Waste Management gave a presentation to approximately 250 area growers and professionals in insect, weed, turf management and more at the annual Pest Management Workshop. Petrie and Richardson explained the legal requirements for pesticide disposal, and best management suggestions for maintaining environmental and public safety relating to the proper use and disposal of these products.

CSU staff member Thia Walker and CSU Extension Entomologist Meredith Shrader at the Pest Management Workshop. This annual 2-day event is put on by the Tri-River Area Extension for local pesticide applicators to learn updated industry research and earn the required continuing education credits for a pesticide applicator license.

Dr. Ralph Whitesides (center), retired from Utah State University, demonstrates a water hardness test for CSU Tri-River Area Extension staff members Bonnie Powell and Melissa Franklin. Hard water can decrease the efficacy of specific herbicides and other pesticides, so it is essential to read the labels of the pesticides and learn about the water quality so each application can work properly.

Mesa County Attorney Patrick Coleman and Assistant County Attorney John Rhoads participate in an online legal course regarding the land use, zoning and leasing of cell phone towers.

Assistant County Attorney John Rhoads participates in a webinar to learn more about the laws that need to be considered when developing wireless ordinances.

Information Technology (IT) Senior Support Specialist Eric Farslow does a sound check and makes sure everything is working properly before a webinar for the legal team gets underway. 
Administrative Assistant Cori Armstrong is a new friendly face in the Mesa County Human Resources Department (HR). 

KKCO 11 News Reporter Stephanie Bennet interviews MCPH Epidemiology Program Manager Heidi Dragoo about flu activity in Mesa County, earlier this week.

The road closure, in the Orchard Mesa vicinity, at 3020 A 1/2 Road will take place next week Monday, Feb. 12, through Friday, Feb 16.

Mesa County Clerk and Recorder Sheila Reiner stops by KAFM Radio to talk about a video series project her office has been working on to promote government efficiency. The videos are playing at the local movie theater, and can also be viewed at https://youtu.be/WEIR9ykqKxM and https://youtu.be/zBGKxB7z18M.
HR staff recognizes the Finance team with a giant pizza to thank them for their hard work and dedication in implementing the new tax tables. 

Monday, February 5, 2018

Finance Department receives Excellence in Financial Reporting Award for the 24th year in a row

Mesa County Commissioners recognize and congratulate the Finance Department for earning the highest form of commendation in governmental accounting for the 24th year in a row. From left to right, Commissioner Scott McInnis, Accounting Manager Pam Noonan, Budget Manager Eleanor Thomas, Senior Accountant Katherine Boozell, Commissioner John Justman, Commissioner Rose Pugliese.

Mesa County Commissioners presented a Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting by the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada (GFOA) to the Finance Department for its comprehensive annual financial report in public hearing.

The prestigious award recognizes governmental accounting and financial reporting and represents a significant accomplishment by the Finance Department. Mesa County has received this honor every year since 1993.

Mesa County’s financial reports met the high standards of GFOA’s award program, including demonstrating a constructive 'spirit of full disclosure' to clearly communicate its financial story and motivate potential users and user groups to read the comprehensive annual financial report.

Mesa County’s comprehensive annual financial report was judged by an impartial panel of GFOA reviewers.GFOA is a nonprofit professional association serving approximately 17,500 government finance professionals.

To view Mesa County’s 2016 Financial Report, visit http://www.mesacounty.us/finance/cafr-2016.aspx.

Plates by Mail

Clerk and Recorder’s Office releases another video to promote simplicity and boost efficiency


Mesa County Clerk and Recorder Sheila Reiner released the second video in a series that features resources available at the Motor Vehicle Office, 200 S. Spruce St., that save time and are easy to use.

“Folks often assume they must come to our office for license plates for their new vehicle, but it can be done by mail!” Reiner said. “You just need a packet to get started.  Download a packet from our website at plates.mesacounty.us and click the link for ‘Skip the Trip.’ You can also email plates@mesacounty.us or call us at 970- 244-1664, and we can send you a packet.”

Watch the video at https://youtu.be/zBGKxB7z18M.

“This video is a reminder about the resources available to consider before you decide to come down and see us at the office,” added Reiner.

Friday, February 2, 2018

This Week in Pics

Mesa County Surveyor Patrick Green briefs the Board of Mesa County Commissioners Monday in public hearing regarding the status of his office and the previous year's accomplishments. In 2017, Mesa County Surveyor Patrick Green, Western Colorado Land Surveyors, Professional Land Surveyors of Colorado and Colorado Mesa University worked collaboratively to address legislative changes that require those seeking a license as a professional land surveyor to have a four-year degree in surveying. As a result, Colorado Mesa University started offering a new course in land surveying and geomatics at Western Colorado Community College in the fall of 2017. For information about the land surveying program, visit http://www.coloradomesa.edu/wccc.

U.S. Department of Agriculture Colorado State Director Sallie Clark stopped by the old Mesa County Courthouse, 544 Rood Ave., Tuesday morning to give local government leaders an update on the Rural Development program. USDA Rural Development is currently conducting a routine five-year periodic review process regarding eligible areas for housing programs (direct and guaranteed home loans) in Colorado.

Sallie Clark, U.S. Department of Agriculture's state director of rural development in Colorado, talks about the notice of changes to eligible area maps for USDA Rural Development Housing Programs in Clifton and Fruita. To view the notice, visit http://blog.mesacounty.us/2018/01/notice-of-changes-to-eligible-area-maps.html.

USDA Rural Development is conducting a review of all areas under its jurisdiction to identify areas that no longer qualify as rural for housing programs. U.S. Department of Agriculture Colorado State Director Sallie Clark spoke to local government leaders about the review her agency is conducting. The public has 90 days from the date of the public notice to submit comments regarding the potential loss of eligibility for Rural Development housing programs. Comments should be sent to cogrhinquiries@co.usda.gov. All submitted comments will be reviewed and any changes made will be published April 1, 2018. The nationwide implementation for all map changes will be June 4, 2018.

Mesa County Commissioner John Justman chats with Delta County Commissioner C. Douglas Atchley at the meeting.  

Delta County Commissioner Don Suppes and Mesa County Commissioner Scott McInnis.

 Sallie Clark, left, tells Mesa County Commissioner Rose Pugliese that the last rural area reviews were performed in 2012-2013 using the 2010 census data. This year's study will utilize the 2015 American Community Survey (ACS) data.
Mesa County Commissioner John Justman and Clerk and Recorder Sheila Reiner pause for a picture before their catch-up meeting gets underway. 

Mesa County Building Department hosts annual code compliance classes taught by Steve Thomas from Colorado Code Consulting. This week, many Western Slope building inspectors, firefighters, contractors, architects, and engineers attended this year’s seminar to learn about the changes between the 2012 IRC Conventional Light Framing and 2012 International Building Code Fire Resistant Rated Construction versus the 2018 IRC Conventional Light Framing and 2018 International Building Code Fire Resistant Rated Construction.

The two-day seminar covered the significant changes between the 2012 and 2018 IRC and IBC. Mesa County Building Department has been hosting training opportunities that are open to the public for over 15 years. For training opportunities, visit http://www.mesacounty.us/building/.
Mesa County Clerk and Recorder Sheila Reiner stops by the KREX studio to talk about resources available at the Motor Vehicle office. To watch the interview, visit http://www.westernslopenow.com/news/local-news/new-resource-to-save-time-at-motor-vehicle-office/933375260.

Mesa County Elections Director Amanda Polson participates in a discussion, led by Mesa County Clerk and Recorder Sheila Reiner, regarding the five principles of innovation from the Denver Peak Academy.

Clerk Reiner teaches staff that innovation can be transformed from thinking it, to saying it, to implementing it, through effective tools that track and measure results. 

When implementing change, it is important to plan, innovate and sustain innovation through accountability measures.

Spring cleaning came early this week at the Department of Human Services (DHS). Case Services Aides Kezia Schmidt, left, and Angela Robinson, right, might have gotten the wrong impression what needed cleaning.

Child Support Specialist Candice Barnes enjoys her clean cube, but not the photo op!
Operations Supervisor Albin Escamilla always keeps things clean around DHS.
Child Support Specialist Lorri Chavez really takes getting things clean SERIOUSLY!

Child Support Specialist Mai Mesta leaves no dust bunnies behind.

DHS janitor, Ann Buddle, takes care of the final cleaning detail.

Mesa County Commissioner Rose Pugliese shares with KFQX (FOX) Anchor Chelsea Helms that she was re-elected by commissioners from across Colorado as the Chair of Colorado Counties' General Government Committee for an additional 2-year term. Pugliese will continue to be a strong voice for the Western Slope. Watch the interview at http://www.westernslopenow.com/news/local-news/commissioner-pugliese-discusses-bills-for-the-2018-legislative-session/946442718.