The Delta County Commissioners at their Aug. 21 business meeting approved a letter to the BLM reaffirming 2013 support for the FRAM Whitewater Master Development Plan and amendment.
FRAM is a gas and oil operator that is working to develop rights in the sprawling Whitewater Unit which includes some areas in Delta County.
In response to the BoCC's decision, Natasha Léger, director of Citizens for a Healthy Community, asked if a cost/benefit analysis of the plan had been completed. Commissioner Mark Roeber said, "My recollection is that we did not do one."
Leger provided the commissioners a copy of a statement by Citizens for Clean Air, identified as a Grand Junction group, analyzing FRAM's financial condition.
In other business at its Aug. 17 meeting, the Board of County Commissioners dealt with the following matters:
• Commissioners appointed Don Chapman to the board of health.
• A jail census report showed 39 in detention and seven in work release.
• The county received a "clean audit" for 2016 from auditor Pete Blair. He noted that the accounting department provides good budget estimates, exercises good internal controls, and has high ratings from the state. Overall, the county's finances did not change significantly from 2015 to 2016. Commissioners accepted the 2016 audit report.
• Commissioners met in executive session with the county attorney over a notice from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission involving a discrimination lawsuit.
• Assessor Debbie Griffith reported an assessed value for the county of $295 million. She reported that actual property values in the county are up, but property tax receipts will be lower because of a change in the state mandated assessment rate for residential properties.
• Commissioners donated $100 for the Delta County Historical Society Museum project on the history of the Egyptian Theater.
• In planning matters, commissioners approved sketch and final plan for the resubdivision of Lot 2 in the Orchards of Pitkin Mesa West subdivision, owner/applicant Alan Parks; and, also approved was the sketch plan for Madison Gulch subdivision, owner/applicant Ronald G. Widner.
The election results are in at the local, state and national level, and as expected, Democrats are doing well in state and national races. Colorado has elected Jared Polis as governor; nationally the Republicans appear to retain control of the Senate while Democrats now control the House of Representative.
With a ballot full of local and state measures, voter turnout in Delta County topped 71%, with 15,889 ballots cast. Statewide, voter turnout was just over 52%.
Of the three Delta County residents seeking state offices, Matt Soper won over Thea Chase in State Representative Dist. 54; Mike Mason lost to Julie McCluskie in State Representative Dist. 61; and Olen Lund lost to Kerry Donovan in State Senate Dist. 5.
Locally, in the City of Delta voters rejected a .5% sales tax increase to fund recreation, as well as recreational marijuana sales. The sale of medical marijuana and cultivation/manufacturing facilities was approved by a slim margin. Delta voters also gave the city the green light to move forward with selling or trading the Cottonwood and Riverbend Park, and to sell the old Municipal Light and Power Building.