Archive for: June 2015

In Loving Memory of Joseph T DePari

Joseph T. DePari (Joe) age 57 passed away May 25, 2015 in Trinidad Co. He was born September 3rd, 1957 in Worcester, MA the son of Joseph W. DePari and Frances J. (Boyle) DePari. 

Joe enjoyed playing softball and was well known by many people around the community for it. He also enjoyed fishing, riding his motorcycle, and going to the racetrack. He was an avid fan of the New England Patriots as well as the Boston Red Sox. But most of all He enjoyed spending time with his family. 

He is preceded in death by his father Joseph W. DePari and brother Anthony F. DePari. 

He is survived by his daughter Jessica A. DePari and grandson DeMarco J. Sanchez of Denver, CO son Joseph R. And wife Jerrica DePari of Denver, CO, mother Frances J. DePari brothers David A. DePari and Timothy R. DePari, sister Andrea J. Cassidy and her husband Gerald G. Cassidy, Jr. All of Worcester, MA, numerous nieces, nephews, and friends also survive. 

A public service for Joseph will be held on Thursday June 4th from 2pm to 4pm in the chapel of the Alderette Pomeroy Funeral Home. Recitation of the Most Holy Rosary Saturday June 6th at 9am with Larry Guara. Solemn Mass of the Resurrection to follow at 9:30am with Father John Trambley as the celebrant. Rite of committal and interment to take place at Mt. Calvary Cemetery. Donation for Joseph DePari may be made to the Alderette Pomeroy Funeral Home. 

Arrangements for Joseph T. DePari are under the care and direction of the Alderette Pomeroy Funeral Home of Raton. 





Colfax County Fire Marshal

by Brian Manning
WJ  250x55  COLFAX COUNTY — Larry Osborn, the Colfax County Fire Marshall, supports fire safety and assists the eight county fire districts which cover 3,700 square miles in Colfax County.  All are volunteer departments except for Raton.  He coordinates the eight fire districts and has quarterly meetings with all the chiefs to keep them informed.
The fire districts obtain funding through a tax on fire insurance premiums.  Money is allocated depending on their Insurance Services Office (ISO) rating which is determined by a comprehensive inspection of the fire department.  This includes their training program, apparatus, water supply, communications, and other matters. There are also inspections by the State of New Mexico.
Osborn also arranges training.  The state provides instructors who travel to the county to teach certified courses.  The Philmont Scout Ranch allows fire departments to do training there so that volunteers may train locally rather than traveling to Albuquerque. 
Their goal is to have at least four certified firefighters at level 1 in each district.  They train as firefighters and also in hazmat and basic EMT.  This is a challenge because volunteers must give a lot of time for these classes, but the program has been very successful and the volunteers are  dedicated. 
Osborn just created a new fire district to provide coverage for areas that were far from any firehouse.  He obtained a class A pumper that was in reserve because it would be of more value in the new district.  He also helped them develop a rapid response team that provides mutual aid to the entire county.  They will respond to any district that has a serious fire. 
Osborn is also working to create Firewise communities in the county, a program that encourages homeowners to mitigate their property to limit the amount of fuel in the event of a wildfire.  Some people are hesitant to cut trees because of their beauty, but it is necessary to thin trees, especially within 120 feet of a structure.  This program can prevent devastating fires by limiting the amount of fuel near houses. 
Osborn and his wife, Sherry, have been married since 1974 and live in Raton.  They have three children and four grandchildren and enjoy spending time with them. 

1520 colfax fire marshall Larry Osborne IMG_6394

Commissioners approve another marijuana conditional use permit

by Brian Orr
WJ  250x55WALSENBURG —  Stating, “I’m not sure I’m doing you any favors by approving this,” Huerfano County Commissioner Max Vezzani made the motion at Tuesday’s meeting to approve a Conditional Use Permit for Acme Growers, LLC.
Keith Bouchard and Johnny Padilla, representing Acme, had gotten in their CUP application before the new rules had been approved, and so were held to a more lenient standard anyone else following them would be held to.
Two problems became quickly apparent with their application; they did not have a source for water,  and their insurance for the business was not in place yet.
Bouchard noted they had a permit for a domestic use well on site, which would be enough for commercial or agricultural use, but did not have another source, such as hauling water, lined up.
Padilla said in their research, they found it might be possible to use ‘graywater’, water that had already been used once for some purpose (other than flushing toilets) but had not yet been recycled. “This could be good for Buffalo Ranch and all of Huerfano County,” Padilla said.
The commissioners noted any plan to use graywater must first go through Colorado water courts.
Vezzani asked the two men if they wanted to pull their application for the moment, and come back again when they had secured water and insurance.  If it were approved now, they would only have one year to get everything done, or risk losing their permit.  They said they wanted to proceed.  The commissioners approved the application.
In other business, the commissioners had the county lawyer, Garrett Sheldon, draft a response to District Attorney Frank Ruybalid’s demand that Huerfano and Las Animas pay his legal fees bill incurred during his disciplinary hearing.
Ruybalid racked up $199,697 defending himself against charges of misconduct brought by the Colorado Supreme Court Attorney Regulation Council.  He later plead guilty to 13 of the 35 charges.
The commissioners’ response reads, in part, “The county declines to be responsible for any of this demand … Being negligent is not an activity ‘necessarily incurred.’ It is certainly not necessary to be negligent. Nor are these activities incurred in the ‘discharge of your duties.’… Counties benefit when criminals are prosecuted, not when the District Attorney is prosecuted.”
As the commissioners read through the two-page letter, Vezzani glanced up and said, “That’s two pages that I could have said in two words.”

Trinidad’s “Amshack” park multi-modal station

by Joe Tarabino
WJ  250x55TRINIDAD — The long awaited new Trinidad multi-modal transportation center is, according to city clerk Audra Garrett, currently almost up to speed as “all parties are still committed to moving this project forward and seeing it to fruition.”  
Construction of the budgeted $860,135 facility has been spearheaded by the South Central Council of Governments (COG) which raised more than the required funds prior to its approval in 2011.  The planned structure will be architecturally similar to the existing Colorado Welcome Center and will be located within easy walking distance from it.  
Owned by the city but operated and maintained by COG, the new facility will contain a waiting area with seating, restrooms,  and ticket booths, serving local, regional and intercity passenger rail and bus services.
The current “$1.2 million concrete platform with a tactile edge, fencing and lighting”, officially located at 110 West Pine Street and funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, offers none of the traditional amenities usually provided at transportation stations such as an enclosed waiting area or shelter, restrooms, lounge, ticket kiosk, water fountain, phone service, elevator, or wi-fi.  It does offer dedicated parking and is handicapped accessible.
COG director Priscilla “Pete” Frazier and previous city planner Louis Fineberg had worked incessantly keeping the original coalition parties involved and now that responsibility has fallen on Garrett.  
Amtrak, Burlington Northern, and the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) have all been involved in negotiations.   COG originally secured a $150,000 CDOT grant in conjunction with another $250,000 FASTER (Funding Advancement for Surface Transportation and Economic Recovery) grant and an additional $152,000 Federal Livability Program grant.   Burlington Northern also committed “about $20,000” to the project.  The City of Trinidad is investing $30,000 to purchase the land near Nevada Avenue rather than adjoining Commercial Street where an earlier, temporary, metal “Amshack” building had been placed in 2007.  The required purchase and lease agreements and tweaking of the engineering are close to completion, which is all that needs to be done before construction documents are developed and bids can be secured.
Trinidad Amshack Multi-Model Station Rendering

Trinidad Amshack Multi-Model Station Rendering

Spotlight on the Special

WJ  250x55RATON — This week’s Spotlight on the Special is Tyson Floersheim, the son of Ray and Jana Floersheim.   He, his parents, sister, and two older brothers, are all Raton natives.   
Tyson became an Eagle Scout at age 14, and as a junior in high school, decided to do his junior and senior year at once (senior year by Pear Blossom online private school) and graduate a year early.  Interestingly, his sister also graduated early.   
Tyson attends UCCS in Colorado Springs.   He originally majored in engineering but once he realized he wanted to work outdoors, he changed to his current major of geography and environmental science with a minor in Geology. He will graduate with GIS certification as well.
While at college, he has had ample time to spend hiking,  camping, and snowboarding, and is passionate about spending time in the mountains.  As a side interest, he produces electronic dance music, and performs at the Zodiac Club in Colorado Springs.  He turned twenty one years old in March 2015.  He will also be in a two week class immediately after classes end this semester in Moab, Utah, and this is also a camp class, so he will be earning college credits most of the summer.  He is shown above with his girlfriend, Anna.

Tyson Floershiem and his girlfriend Anna

Tyson Floershiem and his girlfriend Anna

Weather hampers street construction project

by Kimberly Adams
WJ  250x55TRINIDAD — Wet spring weather is to blame for delays on the Commercial Street construction project, according to project manager Tom Beach with the city public works department.
Construction of the quarter-mile long project in the hub of downtown Trinidad began April 6.  The construction zone begins on the south side of the Commercial Street bridge and ends at the intersection with Main Street.  The project is scheduled for completion at the end of September.
Weather is not the only factor slowing down the project. During excavation of the first block, public works crews determined the 25-year-old water lines needed to be replaced. “That has put us back and with all the rain we’ve had, we’re really at a standstill,” Beach said. “We have had a hard time getting equipment into the site without burying it and damaging work already performed.”    
According to a weekly update from the city, the sewer slip lining company is on site this week to complete their work on the 15-inch line and to install slip lining on the adjacent 10-inch line.  This means the closure of Commercial Street where it intersects with Main Street for a few days while work continues between Church and Elm streets. Right now, the block between the Commercial Street Bridge and Cedar Street is closed, but businesses on the street remain open.
The City of Trinidad thanks merchants and citizens for their patience during this construction process,” the city press release states. “We look forward to providing a much more appealing Commercial Street area upon completion.”
For questions on the construction project, contact Beach at (719) 846-9843, ext. 126.