Friday, October 21, 2016

This Week in Pics

Human Resources hosted many Open Enrollment benefit meetings to talk to employees about new voluntary benefits as well as a general benefits overview. 
Employee's health care premiums will not increase in 2017!
Great turnout at the first meeting! Overall, over 400 employees participated in-person! 
Employee Open Enrollment meeting.
Senior Benefits Administrator Brenda McKay happy to see the excellent attendance at one of the many open enrollment meetings that were hosted. 
IT Support Specialist Eric Farslow, left, and Web Administrator Joe Keene run the videography equipment to record and stream the open enrollment presentation for employees that cannot attend in person.
Human Resources Analyst Shelly Vehik and Senior Benefits Administrator Brenda McKay worked hard to get enrollment information and sessions coordinated.
Women, Infants & Children (WIC) Educator Kandis Fuller talks to WIC moms about breastfeeding at a Breastfeeding Support Group at Mesa County Health Department, 510 29 1/2 Road. Kandis covers everything from the basics to the struggles and successes. It's a great class!
Public Health Nurse Diane Banta administers a flu shot to Regional Epidemiologist Andy Tyler at the Health Department, 510 29 1/2 Road, on Monday. MCHD staff immunized 150 Mesa County residents during the Oct. 17 flu clinic.
Still need YOUR flu shot? Another adult flu clinic will be held Oct. 25 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Mesa County Health Department staff members walked to school with Tope Elementary and Orchard Avenue Elementary students Wednesday for Walk to School Day. Encourage your kids to walk to school to improve their health and safety skills!
IT Help Desk Support Specialist Paul Mitts greets the camera with a contagious smile. Paul is the point of contact for technology assistance and has all the answers!
Teresa Nees of Noxious Weed and Pest Management in collaboration with members of the Dolores River Restoration Partnership hosts an education and planting event for Gateway public school. Joined in the following pictures by Daniel Oppenheimer of Tamarisk Coalition, Zeb Miracle and other staff with Gateway Canyons Resort, and Gateway school students and teachers.
Teresa Nees of Noxious Weed and Pest Management teaches students from Gateway School how to identify noxious weeds.
Gateway School students attentively listen to the explanation of the environmental impact weeds on the quality of life, agricultural production and on native plants and wildlife.
Students learn how to plant trees.
Gateway School students get hands-on training!  
Mesa County Noxious Weed and Pest Management in collaboration with members of the Dolores River Restoration Partnership hosts an education and planting event for Gateway public school.
This week Deputy Assessor Brent Goff taught Inside Mesa County class participants insider knowledge about the function and responsibilities of the Assessor's office. The Assessor deals with property value and is responsible for identifying and valuing all taxable property.
From left, Deputy Administrator for Operations Pete Baier and Engineering Division Director Julie Constan update the Commissioners regarding the Persigo Wastewater Treatment Plant.
Clockwise, Commissioner John Justman, County Attorney Patrick Coleman, Deputy Administrator for Operations Pete Baier, Engineering Division Director Julie Constan, and Commissioner Rose Pugliese discuss Persigo.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Commissioners support Raise the Bar

The Mesa County Commissioners support Raise the Bar, Amendment 71, because, as part of this initiative, signatures must come from all of the Senate Districts; not just the Congressional Districts.

This will ensure that all of the required signatures for ballot measures do not come just from the I-25 corridor but are actually representative of all our communities, including the Western Slope. We do not take endorsements of ballot initiatives lightly, but this amendment is that important.

Make sure your voice is included in the conversation on amending our Colorado Constitution. Vote YES on Amendment 71!

Rose Pugliese, John Justman, Scott McInnis

Throwback Thursday: Trail ride on the North Branch of the Old Spanish Trail

The Grand Junction Old Spanish Trail Association hosted "Back to the Trail," a celebration of 20 years of running, hiking, biking, and horseback riding on the Old Spanish Trail in Mesa County.

The event took place July 29, 2016, at the Whitewater Trailhead on Coffman Road. The celebration featured reenactors arriving on the trail dressed in authentic 19th-century garb on horses and mules.

Fort Uncompahgre, the first commercial trading establishment in Western Colorado. Fur trappers and traders used the mule as their transportation over the rugged terrain on Western Colorado.

Reenactors arriving on the trail dressed in authentic 19th-century garb on horses and mules.
At the Old Spanish Trail in Mesa County.
Reacting the fur trappers and traders that used mules as their transportation over the rugged terrain on Western Colorado.
"Back to the Trail"

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

One-day closure for Clifton & Fruita MV offices

The Clerk and Recorder’s office will be closing the Clifton and Fruita Motor Vehicle offices on Election Day (Nov 8) so that additional staff will be available to assist the Elections team in wrapping up the 2016 General Election.

“Presidential Elections are large operations and the additional members of the Motor Vehicle and Recording staff will lend a much-needed hand to the Election Day process,” Mesa County Clerk Sheila Reiner said. “The main office at 200 South Spruce Street will remain open to perform all services on Election Day. I appreciate the public’s patience and understanding while we strengthen our team on Election Day!”

The Clifton and Fruita offices will resume their normal schedules for the remainder of the week following Election Day.

For more information, or if you have any questions or concerns, please call the Motor Vehicle office at (970) 244-1664.

Monday, October 17, 2016

October is Walk to School Month

Mesa County Commissioners present the Walk to School Day proclamation to members of the Regional Transportation Planning office and Health Department. 

Mesa County Commissioners proclaimed October 19, 2016, as Walk to School Day in Mesa County and urge all residents and drivers to be alert on the road especially when approaching school zones and crosswalks.

From left, Biz Collins, John Justman, Jennifer Fox-Colwell, Kelsey Fife, Mary Cornforth Cawood, Katie Gooddeyne, Rose Pugliese
School District 51 elementary schools along with other schools around the world will celebrate International Walk to School Month on Walk to School Day.

County Clerk takes lead on software upgrade initiative

Mesa County Clerk and Recorder Sheila Reiner along with the Colorado Department of Revenue, the Governor’s Office of Information Technology and others have been working diligently on the replacement of the outdated and antiquated Driver License System (DLS) and Colorado State Titling and Registration System (CSTARS).

This project is called the Colorado Driver License, Record, Identification and Vehicle Enterprise Solution (Colorado DRIVES). The end result of the project is to provide an efficient, reliable, accurate and integrated solution for driver and vehicle services, as well as business licensing and revenue accounting.

Clerk and Recorder Reiner was recently highlighted in Colorado DRIVES newsletter, The Journey, which cohesively brings the project and the system-users together by highlighting and communicating the status of the process.

View the newsletter at

Friday, October 14, 2016

This Week in Pics

Property in East Orchard Mesa has been transformed from an old orchard at risk of becoming a host site for disease and insect infestation to a healthy and thriving orchard! The collaborative efforts by Mesa County Noxious Weed & Pest Management, Upper Grand Valley Pest Control District and property owners made the land reclamation a great success.

Before land reclamation and mitigation  
After: a beautiful orchard.

Mel Bamford with Noxious Weed Management searches and removes diffuse knapweed along 59 Road, south of Collbran on a beautiful autumn day.

Each quarter the Criminal Justice Services Department recognizes an employee who has demonstrated outstanding service through their work while exhibiting a positive and supportive attitude. This quarter's winner is Criminal Justice Office Eli Stemrich!

Congratulations to Eli Stemrich, right, who was nominated by his peers for CJSD employee of the quarter. Treatment Director Jason Talley, left, presents the recognition cake.
Director Dennis Berry, right, along with CJSD staff give Eli Stemrich, left a round of applause.

The Criminal Justice Services Department put on a chili cook-off and had over 35 chili judges! 
CJSD chili cook-off in full swing
It's a tough job being a CJSD chili cook-off judge...serious competition.
Carol Parker is the winner! Congrats!

Health Inspector Heather Nara speaks to her coworkers at Mesa County Health Department about Triad EAP benefits and how to use them at the MCHD Quarterly All Staff Meeting on Tuesday.  

Executive Director Jeff Kuhr, right, assists with tech support after welcoming new employees. 

Animal Services Ambassador Sherman, takes his job very seriously. He is the official greeter, and he even has a Facebook page! Sherman has been recovering from a surgery he had back in September. He is recovering well and back to work!

Sherman is always busy at the office.
We are glad to see Sherman recovering well and back to work!

Sargeant Lee takes the Inside Mesa County (IMC) class on a tour of the Mesa County Jail.

IMC class participants walk to the Mesa County Jail for a tour.
Sargeant Lee talks to the IMC class about the jail intake process.
Sargeant Lee

This week Mesa County Administrator Frank Whidden presented the proposed 2017 budget to the Board of County Commissioners. 

Administrator Frank Whidden talks to KKCO 11 News Reporter Makenzie O'Keefe about the budget challenges Mesa County is facing. 
KKCO 11 News Reporter Makenzie O'Keefe interviews Commissioner Justman. 
Commissioner McInnis talks to KKCO 11 News Reporter Makenzie O'Keefe about the reduction of revenues and how it affects the County's budget
KREX Channel 5 News Reporter Brandon Thompson interviews Commissioner McInnis on the proposed 2017 budget. 

Commissioner Pugliese gives the Chamber Government Affairs Committee an update on what Mesa County is working on and toward.

Commissioner Pugliese talks about the economic and legislative priorities for Mesa County