RBC I Associated Governments of Northwestern Colorado (AGNC) elected officers and board members for 2016 at the regularly scheduled board meeting. AGNC members include local county and municipal government entities for Garfield, Mesa, Moffat, Rio Blanco and Routt counties.
Jeff Eskelson, Rio Blanco County commissioner, was re-elected as AGNC chairman. Martin Chazen, Grand Junction City Councilman, was elected as vice-chairman and Cari Hermacinski was elected as treasurer. Other board members are Mike Samson, Garfield County commissioner, John Justman, Mesa County commissioner and Chuck Grobe, Moffat County commissioner.
Board members representing municipalities in the region are: Frank Breslin, Town of New Castle; Andy Key, Town of Rangely; Heather McLaughlin-Sloop, City of Steamboat Springs; and Mayor Ray Beck, City of Craig.
The mission of AGNC is to communicate with, inform and reflect the needs of its members and promote the values, industries and economies of Northwest Colorado.
Under the leadership of Chairman Eskelson in 2015, AGNC successfully obtained a grant to complete local scale habitat mapping for the Greater Sage Grouse with the goal of balancing conservation of the species with economic development opportunities throughout the region.
Efforts have been revitalized to gain the distribution of $76 million in mineral funding held by the federal government in association with the Anvil Points reclamation project.
Eskelson oversaw the first AGNC Economic Development Summit held in 2015 that provided economic development professionals, businesses and education institutions with valuable insights to economic development resources available to the region.
During the past year, AGNC played a significant role in supporting the Jordan Cove liquefied natural gas (LNG) export facility and worked with the governor’s office to obtain his support for the project as well.
“It is my pleasure to have been elected to continue my role as AGNC Chairman for 2016,” Eskelson said. “We have only just begun to develop the organization into a strong advocate for Northwest Colorado, and it is my vision to make the organization a strong voice and resource for the communities in our region.”
Eskelson has encouraged a strong focus on economic development in Northwest Colorado; he and the Board support the continued administration and increased marketing of the Northwest Enterprise Zone program by AGNC and look forward to the 2016 AGNC Economic Development Summit to be held in late summer.
An effort is also underway for AGNC to explore becoming a regional EDA organization providing access to programs available through the federal Economic Development Administration.
“AGNC is important to the well-being of Northwest Colorado, and I am pleased to serve as Chairman in order to assist the organization as it serves the region,” Eskelson said.