Casino Opening Committee submits protocol guidelines to CDPHE for approval
By Randy Beaudette
On May 19, 2020 the Gilpin Board of County Commissioners (BoCC) held a regular online meeting to discuss topics such as an update from the Casino Opening Committee, Timberline Fire Impact Fees, and the latest information from Gilpin County Public Health.
Board-Chair Gail Watson opened up the meeting at 9:00 am along with Commissioners Ron Engels and Linda Isenhart. Also online were County Manager Abel Montoya, County Attorney Brad Benning, and Deputy Clerk Sharon Cate. Members from the Senior Leadership Team joined in as needed.
Public Health Coordinator Bonnie Albrecht informed the Commissioners that Gilpin County has four cases are now annotated on the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) COVID website which includes two confirmed cases, one probable, and one suspect case. A plan has been set into place to begin administering the symptomatic nasal swab test that will be available for Gilpin County residents. The date these tests will be available has not been determined yet, but residents can obtain information by monitoring the Gilpin County Public Health web page. The Healthy Communities program is no longer available as the Program has recently experienced a funding cut.
Emergency Manager Nathan Whittington added that the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) continues to secure Personal Protective Equipment to support the soft openings of Government offices throughout the County.
Casino Opening Committee
Commissioner Ron Engels informed the online attendees that the Casino Opening Committee has been working with various casinos and government agencies to draft a variance submission to CDPHE that will allow the casinos to open. The Colorado Gaming Association (CGA) along with other gaming counties recently joined a virtual meeting with the committee to address some of the COVID-19 concerns and solutions associated with the various activities that take place in and around the casinos. Protocols are being developed for the casinos to follow as well as protocols for the County’s Detentions facilities because as the activity in the casinos increase, so does the activity in the County’s Detentions facilities. According to Commissioner Engels, Jefferson County Public Health Executive Director Dr. Mark Johnson reviewed a rough draft of the protocols and was very favorably impressed with the guidelines that the committee set forth that will support the variance request submission. Once the request is submitted, the determination from CDPHE will be finalized in about two weeks.
Timberline Fire Impact Fee (Resolution 20-06)
Gilpin County Commissioners approved Resolution 20-06 as presented by Timberline Fire Chief Paul Ondr and various members of the Timberline Board. The Impact Fee will be applied to all new residential construction projects and all new non-residential commercial construction. It does not apply to additions to existing structures. The Impact Fee is determined by assessing the amount of firefighting assets that are available in a district and using a mathematical formula to equate the amount of Impact Fees a district can charge a builder to pay into those assets. Timberline Board adopted by Resolution a $2,327 fee for new residential construction, and a $2.82 per square foot fee for new Non-residential Commercial construction. Fee assessment will take effect on June 1, 2020 and will be added to the Building Permit Fees.
Board of Health
The Safer-at-Home order does not allow the library building to be opened up at this time. Board of Health Order #20-08 is an initiative that allows certain resources in the Library to be available to Gilpin County residents. Computer services and curbside book/video pick-up and drop off are available following protocols set forth by the Gilpin County Board of Health. Appointments can be made online or by phone and visitors are required to properly wear a face mask while inside public buildings per Public Health Order #20-05. Board of Health Order #20-08 was approved unanimously.
Gilpin County Attorney Brad Benning informed the Commissioners that other than working on the Board of Heath issued discussed, the Attorney’s office is working on several zoning violations located throughout the County.
Sheriff’s Office Detentions
With the closing of the casinos, the Detentions report for March and April 2020 has dropped dramatically. Gilpin County Sheriff Kevin Armstrong stated that in order to keep the COVID-19 out of the jail, alternatives to jailing individuals have been used recently which also contributes to the drastic drop in the jailed population. March had sixteen total bookings into the jail, but April had a whopping two bookings. The total population in the jail is 28 with only two being County residents.
CSU Extension Update
CSU Extension Director Jennifer Cook provided some updates concerning the soft opening of the Extension office. Ms. Cook is working with the County Attorney and the Public Health to establish some protocols that will allow the Extension Office to be included in Phase 2 of the County’s opening.
The Community Gardens are open with only a few plots left for the 2020 growing season. Gardeners are encouraged to bring their own tools, practice social distancing, and wear face masks during the time they’re working on their crops.
Gilpin County Extension has been selected as finalists in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) Grant that will be awarded in June. The grant fully funds STEM related programs for the next three years.
Board of County Commissioners approved the Meeting Minutes from May 12, 2020 special meeting.
Adjourn to Executive Session:
- For a conference with the County Attorney for the purpose of receiving legal advice on specific legal questions under C.R.S. Section 24-6-402(4)(b);
- For the purpose of determining positions relative to matters that may be subject to negotiations, developing strategy for negotiations, and/or instructing negotiators, under C.R.S. Section 24-6-402(4)(e);
- For discussion of a personnel matter under C.R.S. Section 24-6-402(4)(f)(I)&(II) and not involving: any specific employees who have requested discussion of the matter in open session; any member of this body or any elected official; the appointment of any person to fill an office of this body or of an elected official; or personnel policies that do not require the discussion of matters personal to particular employees
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