County foreclosure rate lowest since 2000

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Gilpin Commissioners

by Staci McBrayer

  The Gilpin County Board of County Commissioners met on Tuesday, July 22, 2014 at the Gilpin County Courthouse. Commissioner and Board Chair Gail Watson, Commissioner Buddy Schmalz and Commissioner Connie McLain were in attendance along with County Manager Roger Baker and County Attorney Jim Petrock.

Public Comment

  Marge Eller, Alps Hill resident, spoke during the public comment section of the meeting to inform the Commissioners that her neighborhood is moving forward with obtaining an estimate of road base material needed for emergency repairs on Alps Hill Road. Eller said the estimate would be finished by the Commissioner’s next meeting, and Commissioner Watson advised her that it could also be turned in before the next meeting. 

Timberline Fire Request to use County Facilities

  Timberline Fire Lt. Aaron Skeen and Timberline Fire Board President Jim Crawford sought and received permission to use both fairgrounds parking lots in order to conduct a county-wide vehicle extrication training exercise. The training, scheduled for September 27th, would include Timberline Fire, Central City Fire Department, Black Hawk Fire Department, Golden Gate Fire Protection District, Gilpin Ambulance Authority, Gilpin Sheriff’s Office, Black Hawk Towing as well as participants from West Metro Fire and Arvada Fire Departments. 

  The training will involve cutting up approximately 30 vehicles. Originally, County Events Coordinator Vicki Nemec and County Manager Roger Baker administratively denied the request due to the potential debris and waste left in the well-used parking lots as a result of the exercise. This perception was mainly due to similar exercises being performed in the Apex facility parking lot where plastic and metal debris was often left causing a concern for potential damage to tires of any future vehicle that uses the lot.

  Skeen assured Commissioners that his organization is going in with the intent to leave the Fairgrounds parking lots in better shape than they found them. Skeen advised that Timberline will use tarps under the vehicles and will drain the fluids from the vehicles before the event. Additionally, clean-up will also include the use of heavy magnets to drag the parking lot with to pick up any loose metal.  

  Commissioners were also appeased when Timberline agreed to a damage deposit in excess of the standard $1,000 facility deposit. Commissioners conditionally approved Timberline’s use of the parking lots pending an estimate to be obtained by Facilities Manager Bill Paulman for rehabbing of the lot should Timberline fail to properly clean it up.

Treasurer’s Reports

  County Treasurer and Public Trustee Alynn Huffman provided the Commissioners with three reports. The first was the Treasurer’s monthly report that showed County tax collection was down 2.93% over the same time last year. Huffman noted that casinos are slow at paying their taxes this year, and that one casino even had a bad check when paying their taxes.

  Huffman’s Semi-Annual report for the first part of 2014 had Commissioners questioning one specific line item named “RE-1 School Coupons.” Huffman said that particular line item, with a $11,861 balance, has been on Gilpin’s books for approximately twenty-five years. Huffman says she does not have any bonds related to the school in her records and does not know to whom the money would belong. County Attorney Petrock wondered if they funds should be given back to the State as unclaimed bonds. Huffman said she has in the past contacted the school district regarding the funds, but never had a response from the previous administration. She advised the board she would again attempt to contact the current administration to see if the County could get the money turned over to the school district.

  Huffman also gave her Public Trustee Semi-Annual Report. She noted that the County has had eleven foreclosures this year. So far, only one of those properties has been lost in foreclosure. At the peak of the boom, Gilpin saw 83 fore closures in 2009, 80 in 2010, and 86 in 2011. Huffman noted that this is the lowest foreclosure rate since 2000.

Clerk & Recorder’s Monthly Report

  Clerk & Recorder Stewart provided the Board with her June report. It shows a total of $161,864 collected by the County on behalf of the state, the County, Black Hawk, Central City, and POST. $61,835 went to the County Treasurer and $15,713 stayed in the County Clerk’s Office.

Request to Fill Deputy Clerk Recording Specialist Position

  County Clerk & Recorder Colleen Stewart received approval to fill a 20-hour per week, no benefit deputy clerk/recording specialist position in her office. Stewart noted that the position is in this year’s budget and is open do to the previous employee leaving to take a full time position within the County.

  Stewart explained to the Commissioners that her office has a 34-hour position as well, and that person works four eight and a half hour days. The position being requested is used to ensure that the office can remain open five days per week in order to perform recordings.

Additional Survey Services

  Commissioners approved a supplemental budget increase of $3,000 for county surveyor Corey Diekman. The increase is in addition to Diekman’s current $3,300 salary (which is established by statute.) The increase would allow Diekman to conduct additional fieldwork along the Gilpin and Clear Creek County lines to survey and re-establish any missing monuments. It will also be used to research ownership around the Central City Cemetery area.

Notice of Public Meeting

–Coffee with Commissioners, Thursday, July 24th at 6:30 at the Community Center. Topic: Front Range Shooting Partnership

–Food Bank Benefit at Roy’s Last Shot, Saturday, July 28th 1-5 p.m.

Public Comment

  During the second public and press comment of the meeting, this reporter asked the Commissioners if Earthlings for a Future, LLC had been granted their temporary use permit for the 2,500 ticket three-day music festival planned at Trinity Mountain Ranch on August 1st thru 3rd. Commissioners were unaware of the outcome, and asked County Community Development Director Tony Petersen. Petersen said that Earthlings failed to meet the July 18th deadline to get a contract agreement with the owners of the property. Commissioner Watson was concerned as she has been seeing active advertising around the County, and Petersen advised that he will contact the event organizer regarding the issue.

  Also during this time, the Board wanted to advise the public that a Pit Rally will be held on the Central City Parkway August 2nd.  The one hundred-car event will result in the Parkway being closed on Thursday, July 31st for time trials as well as from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Saturday the 2nd.

Next Meeting

  The next scheduled meeting for the Commissioners is on August 5th, at 9:00 a.m. on the 2nd floor of the Gilpin County Courthouse, 203 Eureka Street, Central City, Colorado.



Caption: Timberline Fire Lt. Aaron Skeen discusses all the necessary precautions he and the fire department will take to ensure the fairgrounds parking lot stays pristine after a thirty car vehicle extrication training takes place in September.

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