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La Veta appoints new member to Town Board

 LA VETA — With three applicants expressing interest in serving on the board, the La Veta Town Board chose recent transplant Marilyn Russell to replace outgoing trustee Kathy Manzanares. Another relative new comer, Mark White received no votes, while former Re-1 school counselor Jonathan James garnered two votes. All three applicants provided heartfelt statements about their willingness to work hard on the board and their love of the town. Russell moved to La Veta from Maine 16 months ago, after retiring from the University of Southern Maine. Russell noted her experience with budgeting, grant writing, and knowledge of public policy. As evidence of her commitment to La Veta, Russell stated she had adopted two local cats and two feral cats. Under Old Business – a request from Grandote Peaks Golf Course owner Randy Briggs to meet with the board “confidentially” to discuss water issues. Trustee Dale Davis read a portion of the state open meeting laws explaining the need to meet in private. Trustees Al Coffey and Chip Kraynyk stated that this process was moving too quickly asking for clarification as to why an executive session was

needed. Davis and Mayor Brgoch provided additional information. The board, with Briggs, went into executive session for approximately 55 minutes. Afterwards, Brgoch was asked for additional clarification as to why an executive session was needed to discuss water. The mayor explained the session focused on the topic of, “Mr. Briggs owns a lot of water and maybe the town would want some.” After receiving additional clarification from two bidders offering contracts providing asbestos abatement in the Marshal’s office remodel, the board voted to for the lower bid from Pueblo General Abatement. The bid runs $6,750 but does not include air monitoring, which the town will utilize another contractor for costing about $1,200, for a total of $7,950. The bid, from Pueblo Restoration Inc., included air monitoring for $10,700. Warmer weather is needed before work commences. Under new business the board set a public hearing for February 3, at 6:30 pm to review a request for a variance from Mark and Tanya White pertaining to setbacks, as they desire to put an addition on their home. Brgoch explained the town’s water treatment plant had a problem this past week pertaining to gaskets blowing out, resulting in a loss of media that are part of the filtration process. Plant operators had noticed the plant was experiencing an increasingly frequent need by the water plant to backwash itself. It was later learned that blown gaskets had allowed the filtration media to leak outside of the plant. Because the media is comprised of BB sized white plastic pellets, the leaking media blended in with the snow leaving the plant operators baffled until the snow melted exposing the problem. The emergency repair will cost $2,328. Brgoch explained the water plant was built in 1972 and refurbished about 20 years ago. It is basically on its last legs and is outdated as it relates to improved filtration technologies. The board voted to support and pay for the mayor’s emergency action. The board passed Resolution 2-15 delegating two Francisco Board members, along with La Veta Town Clerk Laurie Erwin, as authorized to sign checks for the museum’s Imprest Checking account. A public hearing was set for March 3 at 6:45 pm to inform the public about the town’s proposed sewer project. For the purposes of their liquor license, Monique Luvette Mary Flores was approved by the board as the new manager of La Mission Mariposa Mexican restaurant. The board also approved the renewal of a liquor license for Sammie’s restaurant. The Stonewall Century Ride is returning to La Veta, after a year’s absence, with new event directors. In the past, the event has attracted more than 500 cyclists. This year the event will be held on July 18, with around 250 attendees expected. Rather than having the riders depart La Veta’s town park via Oak Street south to Hwy 12, the new promoters want to use a route from the park south to Main Street to Hwy 12, allowing for more visibility of the many supporting business along Main Street. The board voiced concerns about possible congestion on Main Street should the ride attract more riders than expected. Mayor Brgoch suggested the group monitor rider registration and report back to board as the event progresses.

Bertha Trujillo

  Bertha Trujillo, 97, from Gardner, Colo., entered her eternal home on Feb. 12, 2024. She was born in Gardner, Colo., on Sept. 30, 1926,

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