April 2008 4/25/08 10:51 AM Page 1 In our continued effort for transparency and communication with the public, this graph represents the progress and completion status on Road & Bridge projects up to April 10. The top figure is the percentage of completion. As the lower part of the graph details, some of the projects near completion include the box culvert on Miguel Road. 2008 Montrose County Road & Bridge Project List with Completion Status PERCENT COMPLETED 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 45 50 55 60 65 70 75 80 85 90 95 100 Road 6400 Road Road Reconstruction 6175 Road Road Reconstruction Bridges & Culverts Ranger Rd B-023 Major Maintenance Miles 1.57 2 Arterial Collector ConstructionStart 3/13/08 2/28/08 The Montrose County Newsletter APRIL 2008 Issue 2 INSIDE: A word from Allan Belt Land Use info 2 3 3 4 6 6 6 7 7 8 Military heroes welcomed at Montrose Regional Airport ceremony Montrose had some very special visitors last month when 25 disabled service members spent a week with the Telluride Adaptive Sports Program as part of the national Disabled Veterans' Adventure Ski Week. Veterans from all over the country attended. Several Western Slope support groups greeted the veterans flight at the Montrose County Airport. Local veterans decked out in American flags Various groups and citizens wait to welcome veterans. lined the lobby of the airport to welcome their fellow soldiers. The Disabled Veteran Ski Week is designed to to provide recreational and therapeutic opportunities for these military heroes and their families. Veterans of all branches of the military welcomed the flight into the Montrose airport. Program participants brought family and friends to participate in the program as well. A joyous departing reception sent the flight back to Fort Benning, Georgia on March 29. ConstructionStart Collector Collector Collector 2/6/08 1/14/08 2/6/08 Best Practices 911 Communicators Week Rtat signs Spring clean up Weed mitigation Sales tax showcase Relay for Life Rtat update Begonia Rd B-029 Major Maint/Chnl Work Dalia Rd B-048 Major Maintenance MajorCulverts Miguel Rd & Cedar ConstructionStart C-0433 Replacement Collector 12/20/07 For updated information on road & bridge projects please visit http://www.co.montrose.co.us/rtat/index.cfm. Regional Transit Service Needs Study County hopes to work with other agencies Community Relations 161 South Townsend Avenue Montrose, CO 81401 (970) 252-4517 Contributors to this edition: • Stephanie Barnett, Rtat • Allan Belt, County Commissioner • Karen Brady, Land Use Department • Robyn Funk, Emergency Preparedness • Erica Lewis Kennedy, ELK Media Services The Regional Transit Service Needs and Feasibility Study will analyze the feasibility and need for public transit services between the communities. The project will look at various components of a regional public transportation service to include: stops, routes, schedule, finance options and governance options. This project will be used to determine how well a public transportation system will work between the communities. This feasibility study will determine the peak travel times for a service to run, preferred routes, frequencies, stops, and special operating needs. The project will be specific to Montrose, San Miguel, Delta and Ouray counties and be shared with the communities within those jurisdictions. The feasibility study will also identify alternatives to gasoline for fueling the public transportation and how the use of alternative fuels may be implemented. The County was awarded $28,000 with matches of at least $7,000 from surrounding communities required. And the winner is ... R O U N D U P Congratulations to Pat Douglas for the winning submission of County Round Up. Pat wins $100 in MAMA bucks. Second place was awarded to Lana Culver for her entry of Mc News and third place went to Greta Hedges with the entry of Impact. Both Greta and Lana win $25 in MAMA bucks for their wit. Several entries were received and we appreciate your participation. VISIT YOUR MONTROSE COUNTY WEB SITE AT w w w. c o. m o n t r o s e. c o. u s • Ana Mostaccero, Community Relations April 2008 4/25/08 10:51 AM Page 2 Page 2 Issue 2 April 2008 April 2008 Issue 2 Page 7 A word from BOCC member Allan Belt express has traction and we’re moving smartly down the tracks we collectively designed and built…IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION. Now that we’re moving you can sit back, relax for a spell, and read through our newsletter. In news that you can smell, touch and feel we’ve got an emerging Planning Commission. Yes, the West End of Montrose County will soon boast a Allan Belt Sales Tax Showcase brings citizens up to date on County Rtat progress The Montrose County Sales Tax Showcase was a huge success. Hundreds of citizens arrived at Friendship Hall to experience first hand the benefits of the .75 percent sales tax for public safety and 1 percent sales tax for the road and bridge department. Both measures were passed by voters last November. The showcase featured several exhibits including information from various staff members about the impacts on their respective departments including a fleet of new patrol vehicles which get better gas mileage, road construction equipment such as backhoes and tasers from the sheriff's department. Montrose County Staff held the showcase as part of their commitment to more openness with the public and a more transparent form of government. For more information about the County's progress with the sales tax initiatives visit our web site at www.co.montrose.co.us and visit the Rtat section. The revenue transition and accountability team (Rtat) is a group of County staff and members of County Citizens for Funding our Future responsible for assisting in the accountable, transparent, and credible implementation and use of new County revenue. “ How do we pay for the future needs? Thanks to you citizens voting overwhelmingly for a sales and use tax, you gave Montrose County a base to fund infrastructure needs which had been neglected due to a lack of funds..” Hi folks! Great job, all of you! Ever watch the old steam locomotives? Yes I am old enough to remember watching them start down the tracks in the old Santa Barbara railroad depot. First you would hear a lot of noise, then the locomotive wheels would struggle for traction, finally they would gain purchase and the train would begin moving, slowly at first then faster and faster. Of course it was always in the right direction because there was little choice in the matter. Well, I’m here to tell you that the Montrose County - ALLAN BELT hardy group of citizens selected to form the first ever Planning Commission specifically to deal with emerging issues on the West End of our County. They will make recommendations to the BOCC. We are delighted with the public interest thus far. I have received seven phone calls from folks in the Nucla and Naturita area who want to participate. However, we must first come up with by-laws, the number of board members desired, length of terms and the precise connection to our existing Planning Commission. We are working on that right now and once all the decisions are made, the San Miguel Basin Forum will carry an application form as an insert. The application will also be available at the Nucla courthouse and the Naturita Visitors Center. Yup, the train is moving and we’re looking to future needs of our County. How do we pay for the future needs? Thanks to you citizens voting overwhelmingly for a sales and use tax, you gave Montrose County a base to fund infrastructure needs which had been neglected due to a lack of funds. We’re not talking peanuts here; this is all about public safety and good roads. While you are helping make this the best possible place to live we have not been sitting idle. ALLAN BELT CONTINUED ON PAGE 3 Above: Montrose County Sheriff's Sgt. Adam Murdie demonstrates how the taser is used, by firing it at an aluminum target. Right: Murdie shows the taser in more detail to a local resident. (Photos by Joel Blocker, courtesy of the Montrose Daily Press) Upcoming events in Montrose County April April 28: Community Dialogue, Grant Writing, 6 p.m. Presenters include Amy McBride, Robyn Funk, Nancy Hoganson, Janet Freed; 161 S. Townsend Ave. April 30: Spring Fling - Planting and Weed Prevention Event 4:30 p.m. 321 6530 Road (Behind tracks at the Fairgrounds complex). Relay for Life coming to Montrose June 6-7 The American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life will start at the Montrose High School track on June 6 and 7, 2008, starting Friday evening with a special cancer survivor recognition and opening lap and ending Saturday morning with a pancake breakfast for all participants. Relay for Life is an overnight community celebration where groups of friends, families, neighbors and coworkers form teams to walk or run around a track, to raise spirits, awareness and funds to fight cancer through American Cancer Society research, education, advocacy and patient & family services. Cancer survivors (anyone who has ever been diagnosed with cancer) from throughout Montrose County are invited to walk the first lap of the Relay For Life to celebrate their victory over cancer. Each cancer survivor will receive a (free T-shirt, ribbon) to wear while walking the track. There is no cost to participate. Cancer survivors can call the Survivor Chair, Sandy Martinez at 209-5445 to register (and request their T-shirt size). Families are encouraged to attend. The American Cancer Society Relay For Life Luminaria Ceremony remembers those lost to cancer and honors cancer survivors in Montrose County. Individuals or companies can make contributions and light a luminaria at the event. Each dedicated luminaria will be set around the track. Luminaria contributions can be made by calling the Luminaria Chair Valerie Bogdan at 216-6622. Several fund raising events are planned from now to the June’s Relay. For example, the Dance to Make a Difference on Friday, May 2nd at Friendship Hall, organized as a Relay for Life fund raiser by City Market team. Also, on May 17, 2008 a Relay for Life Rally from 10 a.m. to 4 pm include events such as a dunk-tank for adults and kids. This event will be in conjunction with Habitat for Humanity’s Habitat Builds Colorado Day 2008. For more information, call 1-800-ACS-2345 or visit the group’s comprehensive web site at www.cancer.org. May May 5: BOCC meeting in Montrose, 9 a.m. May 14: BOCC meeting in Olathe, 6 p.m. May 17: Habitat for Humanity Builds Colorado Day 2008 & Relay for Life Rally Mesa Vista Subdivision May 27: Fatherhood Forum, 6 p.m. 161 S. Townsend July July 15: 125th Anniversary Celebration: 5 p.m. Old Historic Courthouse July 16: 125th Anniversary Celebration: 5 p.m. Montrose Regional Airport July 18: 125th Anniversary Celebration: 7 p.m. Colorado Symphony Orchestra at Montrose Pavilion April 2008 4/25/08 10:51 AM Page 3 Page 6 Issue 2 April 2008 April 2008 Issue 2 Page 3 Giving credit where it’s due County-wide spring clean up a smashing success The free Montrose County spring cleanup at the landfill on April 12 was very busy with the total vehicle count reflecting a whopping 508 cars. Waste Management experts reported they received 411 tons with a value of $9005.00 at no charge to the public. This was budgeted as an operational expense for the County in the amount of $2175.00 Last fall only 169 vehicles reported to the landfill to dump waste free of charge. Waste Management is not sure of the total tonnage dumped for the fall program. Officials believe nicer weather and more publicity were the main reasons the spring clean up was such a success. The staff of Montrose County would like to thank Waste Management for all its help, which represents a contribution of over $10,000 to our wonderful community. Thank you! Just the facts Important facts about Land Use in Montrose County ... The Land Use department includes the Building and Planning divisions. The building division provides plan review, inspections and enforcement of the currently adopted building codes and is responsible for review and approval of individual sewage disposal systems (septic systems). The Planning Division plans and provides for growth in accordance with County Subdivision Regulations, Zoning Resolution and Master Plan. The division provides support, processes and presents applications to the Planning Commission and Board of County Commissioners. The following information was prepared by our building division. The graph shows the revenue from impact fees and use tax for the first quarter of 2008. The number of building permits has slightly decreased and the total valuation of single family residences has decreased 17%. These figures follow the national trends in the housing market. For general information on our Land Use department kindly visit http://www.co.montrose.co.us/landUse /index.cfm. For specific information on Subdivision & Zoning please contact Lynda Glover at 252-4548 and for Building Information, please contact Karen Brady at 252-4541. Best Practices: Montrose Daily Press In this section each month we would like to highlight the accomplishments and best practices of businesses, organizations, or individuals within our community. Impact fees and Use taxes collected in 2008 Month JAN FEB MAR Impact Use $5,330.40 $728.62 $14,214.40 $1,444.81 $23,986.80 $6,941.88 Bobby Reeder and Sam Sickles of West End Road & Bridge department pose in front of a DOLA grant funded excavator and sign thanking taxpayers. As the prime construction season draws near, there will be a strong presence of County Road and Bridge employees in the community. The public has the ability to witness first hand the progress of an aggressive project schedule, and more importantly, Montrose County residents will receive the recognition they so richly deserve. Each project site will have signage thanking Montrose County citizens for passing the new county sales and use tax last November that is making it possible to implement the changes to roads and bridges. This effort is being put forth to not only thank the community but visually recognizes where the new taxpayer dollars are being put back into the community Total Valuation for permits in Montrose County Numbers for 2007 Numbers for 2008 $3,000,000 $2,250,000 $1,500,000 Spring Fling: Weed abatement in the County Join Montrose County at 4:30 p.m. on April 30th at the Weed Mitigation building located at 321 6530 Road in the Montrose County Fairgrounds complex to learn more about the new grant funded weed mitigation building. Also sponsoring the event is the Colorado State University Cooperative Extension office. Come join us and enjoy free hamburgers, veggie burgers and hot dogs. There will also be drawings for seedlings and plants. We want to educate the public on the services the weed mitigation department provides. Weed mitigation is an important aspect for the health and safety of the community. Toxic weeds can easily spread thus their timely mitigation is imperative. Montrose County has received federal grant money to help with these endeavors. Please attend the free workshop so you can learn more about County weed issues and how to best prepare your property to ensure healthy soil and beautiful plantings for this spring. For more information about this exciting event, please contact the Community Relations department at 252-4517. $750,000 JAN FEB MAR Allan Belt Continued from page 2 Our department heads and staff have been able to leverage county dollars to the tune of 12 million dollars in grants for a county expenditure of a little over a million. Who wouldn’t take a money manager who could make that kind of magic with your dollars? Hey, one more thing. Please be sure to join us for our QQC. That’s English for Montrose County’s 125th anniversary called a “quasquicentennial.” (special prize for anyone who can say it 5 times, real fast without getting your tongue wrapped around a toe). My gosh it was 1883, not 20 years past the civil war, when our first County Commissioners A.E. Buddecke, O.D. Loutsenhizer and S.H. Nye began this county’s journey. Now we’re celebrating the history of a most colorful county beginning this July 15 and running through July 27. Keep your eyes open for details. Please come out and let’s have some fun together. Who could possibly say anything negative to the question, “are you better off now, than you were in 1883?” This spring the American Planning Association (APA) recognized the Montrose Daily Press for its revisited Growth section highlighting the impacts on the Uncompahgre Valley. Issues tackled included water, transportation, and looking to the future of growth. According to the APA judges, "the articles were impressively comprehensive and provocative, well reported and written ... they were a real pleasure to read." The 18-page report which was focused on how the local community is changing. This year's competition is the 48th in which the APA has recognized media within North America for its contributions to communities throughout the United States. To learn more about the winning newspaper, visit its web site at www. montrosepress.com. The Montrose Daily Press is the oldest business in Montrose County. The Montrose Messenger was founded on May 23, 1882 the named was changed to the Press in 1908. In June 2007, the Daily Press converted to a seven-day week publication schedule with morning delivery. The newspaper employs 53 people and has an annual payroll of more than $1.6 million. In 2007, the Daily Press donated $43,000 in cash, or in-kind promotional advertising to local charities, events and civic causes. Spraying being conducted in the West End of the County. Photo courtesy of the San Miguel Basin Forum. April 2008 4/25/08 10:51 AM Page 4 “Sec onds save lives and D I S P A T C H E R S save Seco nds ...” April 13-19th was National Public Safety Telecommunications Week. This celebratory week is meant to acknowledge the importance of Emergency Dispatch workers. Montrose County employs 14 emergency dispatchers which serve 23 agencies on the Western Slope ranging from Delta to San Miguel County. The dispatchers aide numerous agencies ranging from multiple sheriff's departments to various fire districts, police departments and search and rescue groups. Local dispatch is staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week and most employees work alternating 12hour and 10-hour shifts. A visit to the regional dispatch center may seem like a trip to space command. Several workstations filled with large computer monitors display maps, multiple radio channels, caller ID modules and a bevy of other vital information sources. Each dispatcher covers for various agencies each shift. Some may be taking calls for the Telluride Marshals' Office while others are covering the Montrose County Sheriff's deputies and others are watching the backs of ambulance services and police departments. Each dispatcher is trained for all 23 agencies. They know street names, vital community information and how to calmly respond in the most harrowing of incidents. On the average, a phone is ringing in dispatch every 4 minutes - totalling 114,828 phone calls for 2007. A case/call for service is started every 6 mins. totalling 55,625 calls for service in 2007. Total administrative calls for 2007 = 95,726 and total 911 calls for 2007 = 19,102. Therefore, 17% of overall phone calls are 911 calls. Comparing Jan/Feb '07 to Jan/Feb '08, 911 calls are up 24.8%, and administration phone calls are down 10% S T E V E * A D A M S Steve Adams never thought he would find himself donning the headphones and helping to keep his community safe. The former cook and baker has been working the dispatch lines for more than four years now. Although both men and women work the communications front line, most are women he reports. "I really enjoy my job," he says. "There is something new every day. You have to be really good at multi-tasking and handling pressure." Adams spent this particular afternoon working the phones for various fire agencies. His calm demeanor is evident each time he takes to the phone lines and multitude of computer screens. He says sometimes the most difficult part of the job is trying to elicit all the important facts from a caller to get the most help possible. This can be particularly difficult when a caller is also part of a crime scene, especially with the prolific amount of drug use in the community. "They don't want to tell you everything," says Steve. "But we have to get the information so we can relay it and the officers know what they are walking in to." ***STEPHIE GLEASON *** Stephie Gleason has been manning the dispatch desks for nearly 6 years. Although she left for awhile to work for the City of Montrose Animal Services, she has returned to her calling. Gleason loves her job, and like her co-workers, relishes the fact that each day is drastically different. "The hardest part of the job has to be anything to do with sick or injured children," she says. "But if you don't handle the situation calmly and effectively you are going to have two victims - the child and the parent. I have to do my job so the situation does not become worse." Gleason has helped in numerous occasions ranging from assisting with a child who fell three stories and bounced off the top of car to helping deliver a newborn - both children did great. She says technology has really advanced over the last two years making it easier for a dispatcher to do a comprehensive job. Electronic maps loaded on a computer screen refresh with each phone call and show the dispatcher pertinent geographical information. Maps which a dispatcher used to have to look up in large, outdated books, have been replaced by Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD). CAD has changed the face of her job, and she is grateful. "Now I can concentrate more on getting all the information to an officer," Gleason says. "They say seconds save lives and dispatchers save seconds." Amber Lillard grew up listening to the police scanner. However, she never thought she would join the family tradition of law enforcement. Lillard joined the Montrose Regional Dispatch team in December 2007 and recently finished training to serve as a fulltime certified dispatcher. "I have not had anyone who was hysterical yet," Lillard says. "The important part of that statement is the, yet." What may seem like a slow afternoon can change instantly to a very stressful workplace she says. One accident can generate a lot of phone traffic and relaying as much correct information to authorities is vital she says. "We get all kinds of calls from welfare checks to traffic accidents," Lillard says. "You never know what you are going to get when you answer the phone."