Town to pay for electrical work

MEEKER I After some discussion, Meeker’s board of trustees agreed to set aside funds in the proposed 2012 budget to pay for electrical improvements at Ute Park. The request for the improvements came from the Range Call committee, which is planning to hold the annual Fourth of July concert at Ute Park next year.
According to White River Electric Association representative Ron Spencer, the necessary improvements will cost approximately $30,000.
“If we build it, they will come,” said Trustee Regas Halandras, in support of the idea. “Whether Range Call uses it again or not, someone will.”
“If this goes through, Range Call might be able to have more than one concert during the summer.” said Range Call director Suzan Pelloni.
“We’ve got people in the community who are really behind this and are willing to do whatever it takes to help,” said Range Call committee member Jason Dunham.
The board also approved a request from the Lions Club for a liquor license at a New Year’s Eve dance and fund raiser for Range Call to be held at the Extension Office Community Building at the Rio Blanco County Fairgrounds.
“We want to do whatever we can to help Range Call,” said Lions Club president Anthony Mazzola. “Fourth of July is our biggest event of the year.”
“We have a band coming from Rifle. We’ll be providing snacks and are trying to organize a tipsy-taxi service. The fire department board said they might have leftover fireworks,” Pelloni said.
“It will be open to under-21 as well.” Wristbands will designate who is of age to drink alcohol at the event.
The 2012 budget, which is available for public review at Town Hall and at the Meeker Public Library, will be approved at the board’s December meeting, which will be held on Monday, Dec. 12. The proposed budget, which is balanced, includes a 3 percent cost of living increase for employees. It’s the first cost of living increase in four years, according to Town Administrator Sharon Day.
“We completed more than $800,000 of projects this year. If we seemed busy, we probably were,” Day said.
Public Works Superintendent Russell Overton asked the board if they had made a decision about continuing the brush-chipping service offered by the town.
“It’s one of our most popular services,” Day said.
Trustees agreed to continue the free service for residents. Residents who have brush piles to be chipped can call Town Hall and be put on a list for the service.