Delta County is pleased to host Donna Lynne, lieutenant governor of Colorado, Fiona Arnold, executive director of the Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT), and Irv Halter, executive director of the Department of Local Affairs, who have chosen Delta County to announce the statewide awards for the Blueprint 2.0 Economic Development Initiatives. A press conference is scheduled at 10 a.m. Thursday, July 21, at Confluence Park, just northwest of the Lions Pavilion along the Gunnison River. The public is welcome.
The Colorado Blueprint is the statewide strategy to spur Colorado's economy, help businesses grow and attract new jobs to the state. The priority is the creation and retention of jobs and the expansion of companies throughout Colorado.
Blueprint 2.0 is the culmination of informative roundtables that were held in rural communities throughout the state in 2014 and 2015. As part of Blueprint 2.0, rural communities and regions were invited to apply for specialized resources to help make their economies more robust. The program utilizes state agencies as well as external partnerships to provide resources and technical expertise which are important to address the unique economic development needs in rural communities.
Delta County has applied for three initiatives: Strengthening Your Business Brand, with the goal to create a unified countywide business brand to promote Delta County as a great place to do business; Adaptive Reuse, to explore how to best repurpose the Paonia Campus of Delta Montrose Technical College; and Tourism Promotion and Development, to develop Delta County tourism products that are compelling and inviting for the traveler.
Trish Thibodo, executive director of Delta County Economic Development, said, "We are extremely pleased that the Lt. Governor, Fiona Arnold and Irv Halter have chosen Delta County to announce the statewide awards for Blueprint 2.0. We are also hopeful regarding the submissions made for Delta County projects and see this as a great addition to the economic diversity plans that are already underway."
Beginning Aug. 1 through the end of 2016, the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade's executive director Fiona Arnold and external partners will visit selected sites to connect them to the specialized resources they applied for. Additional visits will take place in 2017. "Delta is a community that has demonstrated strong local collaboration to improve the local economy, so we are thrilled to be here to make this exciting announcement to help support economic development efforts throughout the state," said Meridith Marshal, senior regional manager, OEDIT. "We are continuing to roll out our Blueprint 2.0 initiatives, and we look forward to seeing how the 27 recipients will leverage these new services and resources to help build up their economies and communities."
For more information, contact DCED at 874-4992.
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.