Friday, January 29, 2016

This week in pics, Jan. 29, 2016

Mesa County is a busy place. Here are some pictures from around the county government this week.

Teresa Nees, left, and Courtney Campbell of Mesa County Noxious Weed and Pest, at the Palisade Insectary for the Upper Grand Valley Pest Control District board meeting Wednesday.
Business analysts Janette Haynie, left, and Beverly Salazar, take a break from balancing the books at the Mesa County Health Department on Wednesday.
Michelle Trujillo, left, director of economic assistance at the Mesa County Department of Human Services, presents the "da' bomb" award to Joanne Hine of Food Assistance. 
 The two photos below are of the Jump Start Job Fair at the Mesa County Workforce Center. The fair featured more than 40 employers and nearly 1,000 job-seekers.

Officer Grundy with Sherman at Mesa County Animal Services.
Mesa County Animal Services Officer Grundy, left, and Officer Patterson  planning for the day. Aggie is "helping."
And ... sometimes life happens. Mesa County Clerk and Recorder Sheila Reiner locked out of her office. 
Albin Escamilla, left, and Tracey Garchar, DHS executive director. Escamilla was the December Values Champion. 
Commissioner John Justman celebrated a birthday this week. Happy birthday, John! With him are administrative assistant Linda Frasier, left, and Commissioner Rose Pugliese.
Commissioners Rose Pugliese and Scott McInnis with Beverly Lyne, a community health nurse involved with Western Slope Against Human Trafficking. 
The Mesa County Commissioners with former Commissioner Janet Rowland and others involved with Western Slope Against Human Trafficking. The Commissioner recognized the issue at Monday's administrative hearing.
Clerk and Recorder Sheila Reiner presented to the Board of Commissioners on Monday about subscription prices for records. 
The next three photos are from Thursday's farewell celebration for Heather Benjamin, outgoing Public Information Officer for the Mesa County Sheriff's Office. Today is her last day.
The one and only, Heather Benjamin

County Administrator Frank Whidden

Thursday, January 28, 2016

County says goodbye to Heather Benjamin

Mesa County officials, Public Information Officers and others gathered today in the training room at the Mesa County Sheriff's Office to bid farewell to Heather Benjamin.

Benjamin, who has been the Public Information Officer for the Sheriff's Office since June 2007, is leaving her position to pursue an opportunity in the private sector. Her last day is Friday.

A slide show at the ceremony chronicled Benjamin's years at the Sheriff's Office. Sheriff Matt Lewis spoke, as did Benjamin and several others. Cake and punch, hugs and gifts, humor and recollections were all on hand.  

Monday, January 25, 2016

Buckskin Hill Road to be rebuilt, thanks to state grant

The Mesa County Commissioners this morning gave the go-ahead for the Public Works Department to accept grant money from the state's Department of Local Affairs, ensuring Buckskin Hill Road will be rebuilt.

Buckskin Hill Road is 58 1/2 Road just south of Collbran. It has been closed since the fall of 2014, after the edge slid about 4 feet.

Total project cost to stabilize the hillside with soil anchors and then rebuild the road is an estimated $3.3 million.  The DOLA grant will fund $1.65 million of that, while the county will pick up the other half.

County engineers say the project should be completed during the 2016 construction season.

"We are very supportive of this plan," said Commissioner Rose Pugliese. "People who live up there are concerned about emergency services. Plus, the road closure affects economic development by limiting access to small businesses."

Added Commissioner John Justman: "I think it's a good project, and it needs to be done."

Raising Awareness of Human Trafficking

The Mesa County Commissioners this morning devoted time to the issue of human trafficking.

The Board read a proclamation that stated they ... "wish to raise awareness about the signs and consequences of human trafficking, by promoting opposition to human trafficking in all forms and encouraging support for the survivors of human trafficking, and to prosecute and ends the demand for these victims, to end the criminal activity, and to restore freedom and dignity to its survivors."

Read the full proclamation here.

Members of Western Slope Against Human Trafficking accepted the proclamation and spoke about the issue. Community members can follow the group on Facebook by clicking here.