Board of County Commissioners policy directives 2020
The following is a compilation of the policy directives, strategies and priorities of the Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) for the calendar year 2020 that promote the County’s mission to deliver quality services to the Citizens of Garfield County. The list reflects key priorities identified by the BOCC throughout the public hearings in consideration of the 2020 Adopted Budget. These are in addition to the annual processes, initiatives, work plans, and programs currently underway and day-to-day operations and services provided to the community. These straightforward goals are the core of a dynamic strategic planning process, which is adaptive and will be ongoing throughout 2020.
Infrastructure and investment
- Continue to execute the 10‐year Master Plan for the Garfield County Airport as a general aviation airport including planned Ramp Expansion project with federal discretionary and entitlement funding.
- Improve the County’s road and bridge system including design and replacement of the Sweetwater Bridge, rebuild of 1 mile of CR 215, realignment of CR 107 and SH 82 at Red Hill, chip sealing 30 miles of County road and annual Battlement Mesa drainage infrastructure enhancements.
- Advance trail improvements including Safe Routes to Schools at Riverview School, the Rifle CMC trail extension and the LOVA trail.
- Maximize the Garfield County Fairgrounds as a year‐round events center with capital investments including improved way-finding signage, sound system improvements, upgraded 3 Phase electric service, and expanded site utilities.
- Upgrade and remodel the warehouse at 937 Railroad Avenue for use by the 4H and CSU Extension programs.
- Improve the County’s regional communications network infrastructure by installing replacement communications towers at Harvey Gap.
- Implement a broadband wireless improvement project for rural areas of Garfield County including the development of a Meet Me Center (MMC) in Rifle, CO.
- Develop a joint broadband authority with Pitkin County for the administration of the regional wireless broadband system.
Health and human services
- Support the aging population through Garfield County’s senior services and community health programs, and through decisions on land use, transportation, housing, economic development and health care.
- Advance the utilization of the Rifle Human Services regional training center and support local non-profits through the Human Services Commission.
- Promote overall community physical and mental health and by preventing disease and by providing quality services; non-profit grants; fulfilling State grants; and through collaboration and partnerships including Garfield County Healthy Communities Coalition.
- Continue to explore all viable mental health options throughout Garfield County with partners.
- Provide additional support for Community Corrections at the State level.
- Continue air quality monitoring in Garfield County and compile a comprehensive data report.
- Work with Peak Health Alliance and local health providers to reduce the cost of health insurance and health care in Garfield County.
- Work with the City of Glenwood Springs, local hospitals and communities in support of a Detox Center facility in Garfield County.
Organizational, core and internal services
- Commitment to making Garfield County the employer of choice in the region through continued engagement of employees on competitive pay and benefits; professional development and targeted training.
- Promote a culture of safety and advance the County’s Risk Management activities.
- Ensure the fiscal sustainability of County operations with an efficient annual budget, operate within it and continue developing long‐term revenue forecasts and financial strategies for the County’s organizational structure and Five Year Capital Improvement Plan
- Consider the development of contingency budgets for 2021, which may include reductions in the budget and grant funding levels.
- Continue to upgrade and maintain the motor pool fleet vehicles for safety and reliability purposes, and complete the Motor Pool Policy update.
- Advance IT cyber security, network infrastructure and data storage, maintain computer equipment and replacements, and develop a strategic plan following the completion of the IT Assessment.
Community outreach and transparency
- Participate in Census 2020 Outreach and Count with regional partners
- Commitment to partnerships and good communication with the cities, towns, and communities within its borders through intergovernmental agreements, joint meetings, town halls, and quarterly meetings with mayors and managers.
- Increase transparency and improve community relations by providing improved access to meetings, information, financial data and services.
- Highlight County activities, decisions, proclamations, awards and events through press releases, public service announcements and other media forms.
- Continue to support the mission of the Energy Advisory Board and host the 8th Annual Energy Environment Symposium.
- Promote economic development around the Garfield County Airport to leverage opportunities such as the Center of Excellence for Advanced Technology Aerial Firefighting; and support the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Training Facility, the Upper Colorado River Interagency Fire Management Unit, the SEAT base, hangar development and general aviation activities.
- Advance broadband systems and partnerships in Garfield County and regionally.
- Protect Garfield County and Western Slope water rights including negotiations, the facilitation of a semi‐annual Garfield County Water Forum, and maximize Board involvement on statewide and regional water issues including the Colorado River Basin Roundtable, the Colorado River Water Conservation District and the Middle Colorado Watershed Council’s conservation planning.
- Collaborate with the Federal, State, other county governments, and opportunities like Peak Health Alliance to lower health insurance and the cost of health care in Garfield County and on the Western Slope of Colorado.
- Prioritize economic development through capital projects, policies, programs and collaboration including working with Associated Governments of Northwest Colorado (AGNC), the new federal Economic Development District and Garfield County economic development roundtables.
- Showcase the Garfield County Fair and Rodeo as a premiere event for the Western Slope with premier talent, events and carnival.
- Participate in community discussions on affordable and attainable housing through policies, programs and collaboration.
- Maximize natural resource opportunities in the Piceance Basin through active collaboration with industry, Federal, State and local governments to support export facilities that serve the Piceance Basin.
- Support the agriculture industry through policies, decisions and programs on land use, noxious weeds, farm-to-table programs, water policies, educational programs, partnerships and through collaboration, funding and cost sharing programs with National Resource Conservation Services.
- Support tourism and improve the quality of life and health through building and improving trails and roads for bikes and pedestrians through partnerships, Conservation Trust Fund grants and the Rocky Mountain Youth Corp program.
Federal, State and Local Policy Agenda
- Continue the purpose of preserving historic access to public lands, historical right of ways and County roads within Garfield County.
- Advance the interests of the County through leadership, policy development and active representation in the National Association of Counties (WIR), Colorado Counties, Inc., Club 20, and the Associated Governments of Northwest Colorado.
- Advocate the sustainability of the Federal PILT, severance tax, Federal mineral lease and Secure Rural Schools funding programs.
- Continue to actively coordinate with the Department of Interior and BLM regarding the implementation of the Greater Sage Grouse Resource Management Plans including a specific goal of coordinating with the BLM to incorporate the Greater Sage Grouse habitat maps as adopted by Colorado Parks and Wildlife via a Categorical Exclusion into the RMPA.
- Complete the Garfield County Federal Lands Coordination Plan and Policies
- Lead the 23 member Western and Rural Local Governments Coalition to positively affect SB-181 Rulemaking.
- Complete needed revisions and refinements to the County’s Land Use Code for the construction of gravel and mining extraction development in Garfield County.
- Actively coordinate and cooperate with the Bureau of Land Management regarding 1) the Environmental Assessment of Rocky Mountain Resources’ (RMR) proposal to drill 5 water monitoring wells and 2) the pending Environmental Impact Statement for RMRs proposed limestone mine expansion.