The Gilpin County Board of County Commissioners rescinded Stage 1 Fire Restrictions during a regular, virtual meeting on Tuesday, January 18, 2022. The Board also was introduced to the new Human Resources director, received an update on COVID, approved the renumbering of statewide districts, discussed the Toll Trail Enforcement IGA, and approved newspapers of record for the County.
Gilpin County Sheriff Kevin Armstrong introduced a resolution rescinding the County’s fire ban. He said he rescinded it last week in conjunction with Boulder and Clear Creek Counties. Because of the snow levels, there is less wildfire concern, but no burning will be allowed when high wind warnings are issued. Those will be posted on the website.
Interim Human Resources Director Susie Allen introduced the new Human Resources Director, Chanda Johnson. Johnson has federal and casino experience, and Allen said they are excited to have her.
Johnson said this is her third week and thanked everyone for being welcoming. Allen said she is doing an excellent job.
County Emergency Manager Nathan Whittington presented an update on COVID-19 and Corona Virus Relief funds. He said he tested positive this morning for COVID and is in isolation. He wore a T-shirt proclaiming that he is in isolation.
The County is at a 25.33 positivity rating with 73 confirmed cases in the last seven days and one hospitalization. No deaths. The one-week positivity rate has gone down, and immunizations are trending upward and getting to a plateau. During testing of County employees, 13 tested positive.
To find a list of clinics and vaccination sites go to www.gilpincounty.org/departments_ offices/ public_ health_ agency.
Regarding funding, Whittington said that two weeks ago the Colorado Department of Local Affairs (DOLA) awarded the County $20,000 for a total funding of $2,015,687. During the past 676 days of the pandemic, the County has spent $453,692 and has a balance of $3,146. The goal is keep the pandemic from creating a financial disaster for the County
Clerk and Recorder Sahari McCormick introduced a resolution renumbering Legislative Districts. She said that voters agreed on a redistricting commission, which decided districts for the State of Colorado. Other counties had a tough time but Gilpin was easy.
The only changes are regarding numbers for the districts. The Colorado Independent Congressional and Legislative Redistricting Commissions were established when Amendments Y and Z were approved by voters in 2018 to draw the new congressional and state legislative districts. The resolution will establish the number of active voters per precinct as compared to the census results in 2011.
The Colorado Independent Congressional and Legislative Redistricting Commissions established that the Gilpin Congressional District remains Congressional District 2. The County’s House District was 13 and is now 49, while the Senate District was 16 and is now 8.
McCormick requested approval of a resolution that would record that these numbers have changed. She also requested a new list of precincts. Gilpin has six precincts listed with total voters in each precinct. The Board approved the resolution.
County Attorney Brad Benning introduced the Boulder County Toll Trail Enforcement Intergovernmental Agreement. He said it has been a long time coming.
The Toll Family provided land for open space and trail use, and this IGA memorializes an agreement to allow the County to enforce park rules, including issuing tickets to those leaving the trail. Boulder rangers will be on the trail to police the rules.
The trail does not allow campfires and is just for hiking. The IGA ensures that the County maintains its jurisdiction and that the sheriff can enforce laws.
If it creates more work for the County, Boulder County agrees to provide mutual aid if the Sheriff’s Office asks for it. Commissioner Web Sill approved this., saying “ I think it’s a good agreement.”
Chair Sandy Hollingsworth expressed concern about parking on the Gilpin County side of the trail, but the intention is for the trail to be accessed from the West Magnolia trailhead. Benning said he can reach out to push that issue again by adding specific language. The Board agreed to hold action on the item until the next meeting.
The Board discussed the designation of Newspaper of Record for the County. Chair Sandy Hollingsworth said the Board had postponed this in order to gather information.
The Board conducted a work session open to the public on Friday, January 14, to allow the Weekly Register-Call and The Mountain Ear to present why they should be the newspaper of record.
Commissioner Web Sill said he has thought about this and will move that both newspapers be designated as newspapers of record. “I strongly suggest that we are fortunate to have two really great newspapers and designate both as newspapers of record.”
Commissioner Linda Isenhart said The Mountain-Ear costs less, and the County doesn’t have money budgeted for both. As well, The Mountain-Ear reaches a lot of people online.
Hollingsworth said the county is fortunate to have two local papers and they are complementary, but The Mountain-Ear has good coverage and an online presence. Some staff said having both papers wouldn’t be much more work, but others said there would be an increased cost for staff.
Legal notices don’t have the same price, but if the Register-Call fee is beyond the state price allowed, it should be reduced.
After much discussion, the Board agreed to name both the Weekly-Register Call and The Mountain-Ear as newspapers of record on a trial basis to compare costs and staff time.
The next meeting of the Gilpin County Board of Commissioners will be on February 1, 2022. For more information, go to p1cdn4static.civiclive.com/UserFiles/Servers/Server_ 9285172/Image/Board%20 of%20County%20Commissioners/ BOCC%20Meeting%20Sch%202022.pdf