2017 Year in Review – OCTOBER

High Plains Executive Director, Eric Niemeyer


Groundbreaking for High Plains Pediatric Clinic

Expansion work is underway at the High Plains Community Health Center Pediatric Clinic. The construction, to add 2,000 square feet to the building south of the main clinic on Kendall Avenue, will take six months and cost $1M, according to High Plains Executive Director, Eric Niemeyer.   “The adjacent dental clinic will also be expanded so there will be one entrance with extra examination rooms and more space for the staff,” he told the gathering during ceremonies on Friday, October 6th. Seven additional exam rooms will be added including a private breastfeeding room and two receptionists, as well as two play areas for youngsters.

The staff will be a little crowded as Dr. Figlio’s offices will be moved to the main clinic during the construction period. Dr. Figlio will see his patients beginning Tuesday, October 10th from 8am to 12:30pm and from 1:30pm to 7pm, Monday through Thursday.  Construction will cause dental clinic patients to use the rear entry door as the parking lot will be closed and signs directing foot and car traffic will be posted.

Niemeyer said there will be two phases to construction, with the first phase including underground demolition, excavation and ground moving. The second phase will call for the new addition to be attached and interior remodeling.  The work is being done by MonCor LLC.


HOPE Students at Former Bike Shop on Main Street


National Bike Representative Visits HOPE Center, Lamar

Members of the HOPE Coalition at the Lincoln School in Lamar received an update on the mission of Gary Sjoquist, Advocacy Director for Quality Bicycle Products. He was a guest of board member, Byron Hall at the Coalition’s monthly meeting.  “I’m going to assist in the design placement of the bike shop and find out the tools that are needed as well as some basic supplies to help the shop get underway and become sustaining for years to come,” he explained.

Based out of Denver and from the company’s headquarters in Minnesota, Sjoquist said he travels around the country to help get projects such as the bike shop established through local community leaders. “Our company’s mission is basically, ‘more butts on bikes’.  We offer accessories, apparel and catalogs for bike parts and related equipment and we work with communities such as Lamar.”  He said his company has a program called ‘Community’ which devotes a percentage of its profits to support biking in towns around the country. “The great news about Lamar is that you’re dead flat,” he said, getting a laugh from the group over the obvious truth about the geography of the area and how that benefits one type of bicyclist.

“We’ll help on your Loop trail and can provide such items as permanent repair stands that are bolted to the ground along the pathway for a quick fix on bicycles.” Sjoquist said he plans to meet with Rick Akers from the Lamar Parks and Recreation Department and Dave Tecklenburg, the Re-2 District School Superintendent.  He explained his company helps organize competing high school bicycle teams across the country.  “We have 19 leagues in 18 states including Colorado, but only in larger communities such as Denver.”



Prowers County wins Certified Small Business Community Award

Prowers County is among four counties recently given a Certified Small Business Community award by the state Small Business Development Center Network.

Winners receive a spot on an SBDC website developed for certified communities, highway signage declaring their CSBC status and technical and cash assistance for their economic development plans.

“With the Certified Small Business Community designation, the winners will have proof that their community is a great place to work, live and play in Colorado,” Kelly Manning, Colorado SBDC director, said in a statement.

Mayor Otto Swears In Peter Hernandez

Granada Trustees Rescind Landfill Closing Vote, Appoint Hernandez to Board

The Granada Trustees voted to rescind the decision they made on September 27th, to close the town landfill. The new vote was taken during their October 11th monthly meeting after they had received an update from the Prowers County Commissioners who attended the Wednesday meeting.

The Trustees, as well as the Commissioners and other regional elected officials, met with John Swartout, a senior advisor to Governor Hickenlooper on the local landfill problems on September 26th. Many smaller communities are having problems maintaining their landfills in a manner prescribed by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.  Granada, in particular, had enough violations to warrant a $52,000 fine from the state by October 1st.  Faced with that mandate, the Trustees voted to close the landfill during a special meeting held on the 27th.

A suggestion to request a moratorium on any fines or actions regarding landfills was made during the regional meeting until such time as the communities and the CDPHE were on the same page for the regulations pertaining to small landfill operations. Many of the representatives said they had received conflicting regulations from the CDPHE depending on who they had spoken with about their landfill problems.

The commissioners said efforts are underway to legislate a one year moratorium on any closings and according to Commissioner Wendy Buxton-Andrade, “The efforts are building steam. We’re getting a committee together and there is an outside organization who is offering aid.”  She said the group is composed of the Colorado Municipal League, CDPHE and Colorado Communities Incorporated and recommended the trustees not submit their landfill closing application to the state.  “I think we can save it,” she said.

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