Prowers County Commissioners Review Annexation Regulations, Levee Upgrade Plans for County


Prowers County Courthouse

The Prowers County Commissioners discussed several topics with Mary Root, County Land Use Administrator during their Thursday meeting, March 22.  A flood map is being completed for officials in compliance with mandated upgrades to the levee system throughout the country, mandated by FEMA and officials from the National Insurance Commission.  Root said that Granada has started work on their upgrades; Holly’s upgrade design is pending assessment of the Highway 89 Bridge, completed several months ago.  The three year project will widen the water passageway, in effect, deepening the system and adding height to the levee system there.  Root said this will allow a faster flow of water, reducing any flood waters.  Design work on the Lamar levee upgrades will probably be the most costly in the county, and is at a preliminary stage. 

The commissioners discussed the recent annexation of five acres of land from the county into the city, along Memorial Drive across from Fairmount Cemetery.  The City of Lamar did not take possession of the roads, leaving that to the county which remains responsible for upgrades.  That will be a matter of future discussion between the city and county.  Announcements are being posted regarding public hearings for the county planning commission for April 3 and April 12.  There are some basic corrections that need to be made to zoning regulations.  Commissioner Gene Millbrand said he had received a call regarding dust blowing into a residential area of Holly.  Root will address that issue for the resident, as well as provide an update for phone listings in the East Holly area for the E911 Commission.  A portion of their finances are based on the number of registered phone numbers in the county.  The commissioners also approved subdivision exemptions for H3 Enterprises LLC and the Gonzales family. 

Curtis Turner, Dean of Academics at Lamar Community College displayed floor plans for the WPA site on East Maple Street, historical buildings the college intends to renovate with grant funding.  The project has been on hold, pending the hiring of a person to head the historic preservation and building trades program at LCC.  Turner said the plans call for developing at least 24 beds in the complex, built during the Depression.  The beds may be incorporated into four bedroom apartments or smaller apartments for some older students or for the nursing students who require, he said, more time and an area particularly suited for their studies.  Turner met with the commissioners as LCC President John Marrin was in Denver with other academic leaders, discussing potential budget cuts in state funding for higher education.  Turner said various department heads and administration officials at the college were holding similar meetings on campus. 

Kim Engsberg, Executive Director of SDS, Southeastern Developmental Services in Lamar, provided an update on SDS activities for the commissioners, and offered an honorary proclamation for Southeastern Developmental Services Awareness Day for March 28. There will be a community wide open house that afternoon from Noon to 3pm.  SDS provides facilities and support to improve the quality of life for people with developmental disabilities.  Engsberg said SDS and counterpart organizations throughout the state are also feeling the state budget pinch.  She said beds in support houses that become empty are not being refilled, and one house used by her clients has been closed through attrition.  Engsberg reminded the commissioners her clients are available for either personal or business tasks in the community as a means of generating funds. 

By Russ Baldwin


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