Friday, April 17, 2020

Building Inspections and Permits on the Rise in Mesa County

Mesa County Building Inspector Rick Sartain performs a residential inspection.

Mesa County Community Development continues to work through the COVID-19 crisis, all while providing services and carrying on with daily activities to keep our local economy moving forward.

"Mesa County Community Development remains open for business and is focused on addressing the needs of our customers," Community Development Director Todd Hollenbeck said. "Construction doesn't seem to be slowing down this quarter, in fact, we are experiencing an increase in building permits and inspections, which is good for our economy."

Building inspectors are averaging between 120 and 150 inspections per day. Here is a first-quarter comparison from 2019 vs. 2020:

2019 first-quarter inspections: 8,022
2020 first-quarter inspections: 9,061

2019 first-quarter permits: 948
2020 first-quarter permits: 1022

"Community Development will continue to take the appropriate steps to keep COVID-19 from spreading and will make adjustments as needed in the best interest of our employees and customers," Hollenbeck added. "We will continue to issue permits and perform inspections daily, and as the situation continues to evolve, we will continue to update the community on any changes to services."

Mesa County Building Inspector Rick Sartain arrives at a job site for a residential inspection.
Mesa County Building Inspector Rick Sartain approves an inspection.

Community Development Departments (Building, Code Compliance, OWTS, and Planning) are operating with modified services to reduce in-person contact and to provide a safe working environment for both customers and staff.

The following are the most efficient ways to connect:
  • Email communication is encouraged for all divisions at
  • Building & OWTS Inspections - Activate the Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system by dialing 970-256-1564.
  • Mesa County Central Services Lobby (MCCS) - The Community Development front counter is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, no appointment necessary.
Please call 970-244-1636 or visit for more information regarding services.

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Local Nurseries Support Elimination of Noxious Weeds

Although once planted for ornamental purposes, many non-native garden plants have been found to cause severe damage and have been classified as noxious weeds in the state of Colorado.

Now that spring yard work is getting underway, it's time for you to do your part and get rewarded for it.

Noxious weeds are illegal and damaging in many ways. They can poison humans, pets, livestock, and wildlife, even spreading to neighboring lands and can even spread forming monocultures and out-competing native vegetation.

They can be damaging to your home's foundation and ultimately lower your property's value.

While doing yard work, check your yard for any of these noxious weeds, and earn a gift card to a local nursery. The gift cards are to be used to replace the weeds with plants (once conditions are safe to do so, and the state-at-home order has been lifted).

Here is a list of the participating species with Colorado government resource hyperlinks that show pictures of the plant and have additional information.

Myrtle Spurge 

Myrtle Spurge (Euphorbia myrsinites)

  • A popular plant in rock gardens in the Grand Valley
  • Low-growing perennial plant
  • Thick blue-green leaves (somewhat resembling a succulent), and unique yellow-green flowers that can turn reddish when spherical seed pods form
  • All parts of the plant contain a white latex sap that can cause mild to severe skin, eye and respiratory irritation
  • Seed pods explode, launching seeds into neighboring properties

Giant knotweed 

Japanese, Giant & Bohemian Knotweeds
 (Fallopia Japonica, F. Sachalinensis, F.x Bohemica )

  • A perennial plant with large heart-shaped leaves and bamboo-like stalks
  • Can grow 5 to 16 feet tall and spreads their root system underground
  • Clusters of tiny white flowers present in late summer
  • Often planted for erosion control or privacy screening, these plants can aggressively spread, clog small waterways and outcompete other desirable species
  • This plant has been known to damage building foundations and impact/lower property values

Cypress Spurge

Cypress Spurge
 (Euphorbia Cyparissias)

  • A popular plant in rock gardens in the Grand Valley
  • A low-growing perennial
  • Thin, bright green, needle-like leaves with unique yellow-green flowers that can turn reddish when spherical seed pods form
  • All parts of the plant contain a white latex sap that can cause mild to severe skin, eye and respiratory irritation
  • Can be dug or controlled with herbicide (click here for herbicide information)

Dame's Rocket

Dame's Rocket (Hesperis Matronalis)

  • Popular in wildflower packets, this plant is threatening to spread into U.S. Forest Service land and Vega Lake State Park from private property
  • Found in many local flower beds; A look-a-like to non-invasive native and cultivated ornamentals
  • Can outcompete native grasses and flowers, and decrease diversity for wildlife forage
  • A perennial plant that can grow 3 feet tall each season
  • Flowers can be purple, pink to white
  • Dig up in early season (click here for herbicide information)

Reed Grass

Giant Reed Grass
 (Arundo Donax)

  • A bamboo-like perennial grass
  • Can grow 20 feet tall or more
  • Spreads mainly through its vast root system
  • An aggressive, non-native species that has overtaken many acres of wetland/riparian corridors throughout the Southwestern and can reduce wildlife habitat, increase fire risk and interfere with flood control while suppressing native plant growth
  • Can be chopped down then treated with herbicide (If you need help with herbicide application, please contact us directly)

If you think you have found one of these species and want it identified, please send photos of the plant to

If you have one of these plants and would like to receive a gift card, please email photos of the area with the weed present, and a photo after the plant has been removed.

Use to send before and after images.

Monday, April 13, 2020

Generous Mesa County, Keep Donations Coming

In a formal update to the Mesa County Commissioners this morning, Animal Services Manager Doug Frye gave the community a round of verbal applause for their generous donations.

Frye said people continue to donate all the items they are always in need of, which include dog and cat food, cat litter, and old towels. Those donations are coming in during their open to the public hours, and only one person is delivering the donations, which is in line with their current, modified process in response to COVID-19.

Additionally, Frye reported that people have adopted six animals since the stay-at-home order took effect and has had a consistent flow of callers wanting to set up adoption appointments. Again, this process is in line with current operational practices.

Frye is grateful and appreciative that residents continue to think of Animal Services with their donations, including Commissioner John Justman, who donated dog food recently.

For more information about Mesa County Animal Services' current public interaction processes, hours of operation, and adoption and donation guidelines, click here.

County Approves $2.7 Million Contract for 2020 Road Overlay

This morning in public hearing, the Board of Mesa County Commissioners approved a contract with Oldcastle SW Group doing business as United Companies for road overlay in an amount not to exceed $2,720,000.00.

The overlay project this year will focus on approximately 14.54 miles of roads in eastern Mesa County, which includes areas like Collbran, Molina and Mesa.

To review the contract, click here.

Watch the public hearing: