RANGELY I Rangely’s Town Board of Trustees met Sept. 14 for a meeting that made major progress official for Rangely and shared important information about upcoming projects. Jeannie Caldwell, marketing/economic development coordinator, was present to showcase her recent work and to seek approval for further development on the horizon. Highlights, compliments and discussion of minor logistics surrounding Septemberfest were shared with several members applauding each other’s efforts.
René Harden from the Community Garden asked for help addressing some difficulties with weeds between the fencing and telephone poles. Town Manager Lisa Piering assured assistance and they discussed scheduling a crew to take care of this matter.
Piering shared updates from several board meetings. She shared news from the sixth annual Associated Governments of Northwest Colorado Economic Summit. A few highlights included conversations about separating statistics for Rangely and Meeker. While the two towns share a county government, operations and needs are varied. Piering also shared information regarding an experimental project to utilize “coal slack” as part of the Carbon Engineering Initiative from the University Of Wyoming.
Board members shared concerns about a proposed redistricting map that put Rangely and Boulder in the same congressional district. Rangely and Boulder have vastly different needs and concerns. Since Boulder has the higher population, their voices could drown out the needs of smaller towns.
Trustee Don Davidson shared updates from Business over Breakfast with a presentation from Moon Lake Electric. Moon Lake is looking toward a future that includes more community participation, continuing their low fee structure and reducing power outages. Davidson shared how wildlife impacts outages, sometimes as simple as a cow rubbing against a pole.
Davidson also shared highlights from the natural resource tour on Aug. 30 with state and federal legislators to evaluate water management resources for Rio Blanco County, including the Wolf Creek Reservoir site. Drought conditions continue to be severe and although Rangely has been able to manage its resources efficiently, the future will require innovative opportunities to maintain the town’s needs and the health of its resources. Rainfall in the high mountain desert can be non-existent, intermittent or heavy, and the management of water storage for extended use is critical. Davidson also discussed two proposals to enlarge Lake Avery, forest and water connections, rangeland monitoring and the reintroduction of wolf populations.
The highlight of the meeting was Caldwell’s report. She shared her recent work of applying for a grant to cover the cost of building a tourism marketing website for Rangely and sought approval from the board. Caldwell then went on to showcase media that she has been working on with Align Multimedia, a production company out of Rifle, Colorado. Two videos “Why Rangely?” and “We Are Rangely” showcase the beauty and values of Rangely with local residents and business owners sharing their experiences. She shared how these videos will be used by the town and on the website to encourage people to visit and join Rangely in their development. Caldwell also noted that the website cost is a one-time expense and that she will manage it going forward. The grant application was approved by the board.
The second and final reading of Ordinance 695 was heard and approved with a brief discussion on the impact and resources that will be required of the Rangely Police Department. It was noted that RPD’s involvement is to support the school district with preventing tobacco use by underage students.
The final item of new business was the approval of a memorandum of understanding between Cogency Power and the Town of Rangely.
By KATIE KING | Special to The Herald Times