Rangely food banks seek town support

RANGELY | Both of Rangely’s “food bank” organizations requested assistance from the Town’s Board of Trustees at the July 23 meeting.

The Rangely Food Bank, which is located in the Assembly of God church at 204 E. Rio Blanco Ave., requested a donation of $500. The Food Bank provides assistance to residents of Rangely and Dinosaur, relies on donations and is a nonprofit. It has been in existence since at least 2009.

The group explained that the donation does not need to be cash but could include helping with flyers, utilities, or potential help with operating costs.

Trustees asked multiple questions in regard to operating costs and how the Food Bank is managed. Trustee Andy Key expressed concerns that the Food Bank is supporting Dinosaur, possibly taking resources from Rangely. It was later mentioned that perhaps businesses in Dinosaur could contribute to the Food Bank or the Resource Pantry.

Key is also concerned with how the money is handled at the Food Bank. The action was tabled to allow for those budget and operating questions are answered. It will be addressed at the first August board meeting.

The Community Resource Pantry, established in 2018 by the Rio Blanco Human Resource Council, also applied for a $500 donation. The pantry is overseen by a five member board designated by the Resource Council. The Resource Pantry is located at 743 E. Main St.

Konnie Billgren, Resource Council Member, told the board that the funds would be used to help offset higher winter operating costs. Depending on the type of donation, some of the money could help with construction throughout the building, such as finishing a hallway.

At its inception, the Resource Pantry received funding from the Rio Blanco County Commissioners to cover six months of rent, as well as a donation from Chevron. Billgren said the council plans to go back to the county.

Trustees moved to take $50 off the town bill each month until January 2020 to help the Pantry.

Mayor Andy Shaffer said he would like to see the Food Bank and the Resource Pantry work together toward helping the community as a whole. Billgren said the two organizations would not be able to work together for multiple reasons.

Trustee Luke Geer requested a full breakdown of operating expenses for both entities.

The Alzheimer’s Association of Colorado is reaching out to rural communities with information on Alzheimer’s Disease. Debra Bianchi, MPH, MS, Regional Director Western Slope Alzheimer’s Association of Colorado, gave a presentation about the difference between dementia and Alzheimer’s and ways to help family and friends with the signs of dementia. Alzheimer’s is the leading cause of dementia, but not the only cause. Bianchi spoke of 10 warning signs of Alzheimer’s. A list of those signs is located at the website alz.org/10signs. The website alz.org has beneficial information located throughout. Bianchi said the Association wants to support and help the caregivers of patients with Alzheimer’s and offer education for law enforcement to handle people with dementia. She emphasized that they are willing to help whenever they are needed. Call the 24/7 Helpline (800-272-3900) with any questions regarding dementia or Alzheimer’s.

The board decided to apply for an administrative grant with DOLA to study and get answers about how to justify the Rangely dispatch center. It is believed such a study would give the town a much better chance of receiving a grant to help with the $225,000 needed to replace the communication system.

Currently, the Rangely Police Department provides its own dispatch center, while Meeker’s police department shares dispatch services with the Rio Blanco County Sheriff’s Office for a fee.

By BRITTNY CAMPOS | Special to the Herald Times