County Commissioners Appoint New Operations Manager

Kirk Powers has been selected as the new Building Operations Manager for Prowers County, replacing Hans Frederichs in that position.  Powers has been employed with the county since 2010 as night supervisor, and will soon be starting his new duties.  Two areas involve maintenance for the second elevator located in the county courthouse which runs from the second floor directly into a vault situated in the courthouse basement.  The antiquated elevator is not available to the public, but has become somewhat sluggish over the past year and is due for inspection.  Powers also discussed an on-going project with the commissioners, a location for permanent shower facilities at the county fairgrounds.  Some past rodeo events, such as the state high school rodeo championships require these as a condition of bringing the event into a community.  In past years, the commissioners secured portable shower stalls which were brought in by a semi and erected south of the Centennial building.  The cost of permanent showers is in the neighborhood of $300,000, funding which is not in the county budget.  A second location was discussed, connecting the men’s and women’s rest room facilities in the Home Ec Building and extending north into Elmer’s Garden.  This alternative would eliminate the need for a third, ‘family shower’ facility which would have to be provided if self-standing facilities were constructed.  This is a long range project and Powers said he would review the initial blueprints developed for the project from several years ago. 

Darren Glover, PATS Operations Manager, discussed the need to find persons or donors willing to contribute the needed $500 to operate the PATS service schedule for New Year’s Eve this holiday.  In past years, volunteer PATS drivers transport party goers around the community from 7pm to 2am.  The drivers, who are on call, and a dispatch person at the SOS Center are needed, and there is some compensation provided for their services as well as fuel and maintenance and insurance coverage for the annual event. 

Dan Tate, executive director of SECED, Southeast Colorado Enterprise Development was present for a public hearing regarding for the Single-Family Owner Occupied Rehabilitation Program.  Tate said the funding sought is for administrative costs to offer home improvement loans to low income families along the lines of health improvements, safety and energy efficiency needs.  Tate said these loans are available in Prowers, Baca and Kiowa Counties, three of the five counties served by SECED.  The loans are a maximum of $24,999 and to date SECED has issued 170 of them over a several year period.

By Russ Baldwin


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