By Staci McBrayer
The Gilpin County Board of County Commissioners met on Tuesday, January 13th, 2015 at the Gilpin County Courthouse. Commissioner Buddy Schmalz, Commissioner Connie McLain, and Commissioner Gail Watson were in attendance along with County Manager Roger Baker and County Attorney Jim Petrock.
Swearing in of Elected Officials
District Court Judge Dennis Hall swore in the newly elected county officials. Sheriff Bruce Hartman, County Treasurer Alynn Huffman, Coroner Zane Laubhan, Assessor Anne Schafer, Clerk & Recorder Colleen Stewart, and new County Commissioner Linda Isenhart were all sworn in to office. Isenhart took her seat with the commissioners, which was won during the recent election
Commissioners approved allowing alcohol at a County facility for an event being held in honor of former Senator Jeannie Nicholson. The event is being organized by Augustina’s Winery out of Boulder. The County currently has a policy of forbidding alcohol at County facilities. The County does, however, waive the same policy for the beer garden every year at the County Fair.
The event in Nicholson’s honor will be held at the community center on January 31st with proposed hours of 6-9 p.m. Commissioner Watson asked that the request be amended to include ending liquor service at 8:30 during the event. The motion passed as amended.
Commissioners also were tasked with the issue of approving the liquor license renewal application for Mid-County Liquors. One complication brought up by Liquor License Administrator Sharon Cate is that the proprietor of Mid-County Liquors, Jan Petersen, has been convicted of an alcohol related driving offense in the past year. Though the conviction does not preclude Petersen from having a liquor license, it is the County’s job to review the moral character of the applicant before sending the application to the state level. Commissioners reviewed and then approved the renewal.
Requests to Fill Positions
The Commissioners approved three requests to fill employee positions within the County. Funding for all three positions were previously approved in the County budget, and all the positions are offered at a pay grade 70. In the County’s hierarchy, a pay grade 70 position has a salary range of $31,800 to $44,400 annually.
The first request was for a full-time account specialist position in Human Services left vacant by Linda Isenhart when taking the Commissioner’s seat. The second request was for a full-time Human Resources Assistant. The last request was for a part-time, no benefits position in that would be split between Human Resources and Finance (twelve hours in Finance and four hours in Human Resources.)
Agreement for Consulting Services
Commissioners approved a consulting services agreement in the amount of $38,400 with Casino Appraisal and Commercial Consultant Rich Jortberg. Jortberg appraises casino property for the Assessor’s Office. Assessor Anne Schafer noted that Jortberg is an “international expert on the gaming industry.”
The contract amount was a $2,000 increase in the contract cost that had not been previously approved in the 2015 County budget.
Victim Services Coordinator Position
The Commissioners approved the pay grade raise and range for the Victim Services Coordinator Position approved during the 2015 budget process. Compensation market survey data was received from Mountain States Employers Council (MSEC.) MSEC compared Gilpin’s position with similar positions in other counties in Colorado as well as looking at “internal equity” (relative worth of the job both within a department and within an organization.) It also looked at the skills, qualifications and complexity of tasks as compared to others in Gilpin’s own established pay grade. MSEC recommended a pay grade 90 ($48,000-$69,600 annual salary.)
Before the approval, Commissioner Watson expressed her concern about the recommended pay grade. “We have gotten ourselves in trouble in the past with salary surveys,” Watson said. She questioned the fact that the Victim Services Coordinator would only be overseeing two employees and two volunteers compared to the Public Works Road & Bridge Team Leader who oversee six employees. She also noted that the chief deputies for both the Assessor and Clerk & Recorder are only at a salary grade 75.
Advisory Board Appointments
Commissioners approved several Planning Commission appointments. Current member Rea Orthner was appointed to a new three-year term. Due to three resignations, alternates Tami Archer and Trudi Kinser were appointed as regular commission members. Two vacancies for alternates on the Commission still exist.
Commissioners also re-appointed Barbara Thielemann and Herman James to the Historical Advisory Commission.
Commissioners approved the 2015 annual appointments. The major change in appointments over 2014 was removing outgoing Commissioner Connie McLain’s name from the Commissioner’s appointments list and adding newly elected Commissioner Linda Isenhart. Additionally, Buddy Schmalz was appointed as the Chair of the Commissioners for 2015.
Schedule of Public Meetings
Commissioners approved their 2015 meeting schedule. The County tradition of twice monthly Commissioners meetings will continue. Exact dates will be available on the County’s website.
Notice of Public Meetings
–Five-County Breakfast, January 21st, 8:00 a.m., Idaho Springs
–Meeting with the City of Black Hawk, February 11th 1:00 p.m., Black Hawk
–CCI Special Meeting, January 22nd, 4pm, Denver
–Local Area Planning Commission Lunch Meeting, January 22nd, Public Health
The next scheduled meeting for the Commissioners is on January 27th, 2015 at 9:00 a.m. on the 2nd floor of the Gilpin County Courthouse, 203 Eureka Street, Central City, Colorado.
Photo Caption: District Court Judge Dennis Hall swears in newly elected Gilpin County Commissioner Linda Isenhart.