Click to Home
Go To Search
RSSPrintEmail

Summit County Government

79 Stories
Posted on: August 26, 2015

Summit County Changes Web Domain, Staff Email Addresses and Logo

SClogo3color_web.jpg

Updates are aimed to ease communication with constituents

Contacts:
Thad Noll, Assistant County Manager
970-453-3438, thad.noll@summitcountyco.gov

Julie Sutor, Public Affairs Coordinator
970-453-3498, julie.sutor@summitcountyco.gov

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County government announced today that it is chang...




Read on...

Posted on: August 25, 2015

Vail Resorts Inc., Town of Breckenridge and Summit County Partner on Iron Springs Funding

Public-private partnership will provide additional $1 million in local matching funds for Highway 9 realignment between Frisco and Breckenridge

Contacts:
Thad Noll, Assistant County Manager, Summit County
970-453-3438, thadn@co.summit.co.us
Kristin Kenney Williams, Vice President, Mountain Community Affairs, Vail Resorts
970-754-2712, kwilliams@vailresorts.com
Kim Dykstra, Director of Commun...



Read on...

Posted on: August 13, 2015

Summit County, Towns of Dillon and Silverthorne Unveil Reservoir Expansion Project

Photo of six public officials cutting a ribbon in front of a reservoir.

Old Dillon Reservoir expansion provides flexibility and certainty for local water rights and municipal water supplies

Contact:
Gary Martinez, Summit County Manager
970-453-3401, garym@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County and the towns of Dillon and Silverthorne cut the ribbon on Old Dillon Reservoir Thursday, celebrating the completion of a major project to...

Read on...

Posted on: August 10, 2015

Summit County Launches Online Facility Reservation System

Photo of the community center

New system will allow for online reservations of meeting rooms and amenities in Summit County facilities, including the Breckenridge Grand Vacations Community Center

Contact:
Scott Vargo, Assistant County Manager
970-453-3404, scottv@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County is launching a new online reservation system for meeting rooms in County facilities, starting with the new Breckenridge Grand Vacations ...

Read on...

Posted on: August 5, 2015

Summit County Unveils Major Improvements at Shooting Range

Range Ribbon Cutting 8-5-15.jpg

Upgrades enhance safety, drainage and user experience at public range

Contacts:
Thad Noll, Assistant County Manager
970-453-3438, thadn@co.summit.co.us
Aaron Byrne, Director, SCRAP (Summit County Resource Allocation Park)
970-468-9263, aaronb@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County, the Summit Range Association...




Read on...

Posted on: August 4, 2015

Flood Maps Open House Aug. 10

Residents from affected properties are invited to provide feedback on FEMA flood insurance rate maps

Contact:
Robert Jacobs, Summit County Engineering Department
970-668-4212, robertj@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County and the towns of Breckenridge, Silverthorne and Frisco will hold a flood-maps open house on Monday, Aug. 10. Individuals ...


Read on...

Posted on: July 20, 2015

New Water Rights Agreement Includes $1 Million for Workforce Housing

Agreement between Summit County and Upper Blue Sanitation District provides greater certainty for District's water rights

Contacts:
Andrew Carlberg, District Manager, Upper Blue Sanitation District: 970-453-2723
Gary Martinez, Summit County Manager: 970-453-3401

BRECKENRIDGE – Upper Blue Sanitation District and Summit County have finalized a water rights agreement that ...


Read on...

Posted on: July 6, 2015

Summit County Unveils New District Attorney and Probation Facility

Photo of officials cutting a ribbon across the front of a building

New facility improves efficiency and provides adequate space for Fifth Judicial District Attorney staff and Summit County Probation

Contact:
Scott Vargo, Assistant County Manager
970-453-3404, scottv@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County unveiled its newest facility on Monday, an 8,400-square-foot annex to the Summit County Justice Center, housing offices for the Fifth Judicial District Attorney and Summit County Probation.

The new offices are located at the former site of the Summit County South Branch Library, which moved into its new facility on Harris Street in Breckenridge in January. The former library building, located on Airport Road in Breckenridge, was remodeled and expanded from 3,500 square feet to 8,400 square feet.

“The completion of this facility is the culmination of work by a broad partnership that includes Summit County, the Town of Breckenridge, the Fifth Judicial District, the Colorado Department of Local Affairs, the Summit County Library Foundation, the Breckenridge Heritage Alliance and many other community partners,” Summit County Commissioner Thomas Davidson said. “We’re extremely grateful to the many individuals and organizations who came together to provide improved facilities and amenities for our community.”

The project has allowed the Fifth Judicial District Attorney to return to the Justice Center complex from its previous location, more than a mile away. The old offices impacted staff efficiency and lacked appropriate security and adequate space for District Attorney staff, which has experienced considerable increases in its caseload. The new facility’s basement eliminates the need for additional off-site storage space, further improving office efficiency. The new facility features security cameras and 24-7-365 monitoring provided by the Summit County Sheriff’s Office, located in the Summit County Justice Center.

In addition, the project addresses the need for expanded space by Summit County Probation, which has also seen significant caseload increases in recent years. Importantly, the space vacated by Summit County Probation will be used to accommodate growth in the Sheriff’s Office and County and District Courts in the years to come.

The project cost totaled $2.6 million, and all work was completed on an accelerated schedule, with the expansion beginning prior to the South Branch Library’s move. Local architect Matt Stais and his team designed the facility with energy efficiency and future flexibility in mind. As the Justice Center campus evolves, the removal of partition walls within the facility would allow it to be modified seamlessly to serve a single tenant.

GE Johnson Construction Company served as the general contractor. The construction team took advantage of favorable weather throughout the winter, staying ahead of schedule and allowing staff to move into the facility in late June.

Summit County received a $600,000 grant from the Colorado Department of Local Affairs’ Energy and Mineral Impact Assistance Program to support the building design and construction. Without the state grant, Summit County would not have been able to undertake the full expansion.

“The DOLA funding was absolutely instrumental in our ability to fully accommodate the workspace needs for these agencies,” Davidson said. “They’re in a much better position to effectively and efficiently carry out the critical work they do for our community every day, both now and into the future.”

The Energy and Mineral Impact Assistance Program assists political subdivisions that are socially and/or economically impacted by the development, processing or energy conversion of minerals and mineral fuels. Funds come from the state severance tax on energy and mineral production and from a portion of the state's share of royalties paid to the federal government for mining and drilling of minerals and mineral fuels on federally owned land. The program was created by the legislature in 1977Read on...

Posted on: June 11, 2015

Sheriff's Office Urges Caution During Spring Runoff

High water levels can pose safety hazards for recreators, drivers, children and pets

Contact: Taneil Ilano, Public Information Officer
Summit County Sheriff's Office
970-423-8903, TaneilI@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Rivers and streams in and around Summit County can be dangerous this time of year, as the spring snowmelt peaks. The Summit County Sheriff’s Office reminds residents and visitors to be mindful of high water levels throughout the area.

When participating in outdoor activities on or near the water this spring, the Sheriff's Office urges people to be cautious of fast currents caused by elevated flows in rivers and streams. It is especially dangerous for children and pets playing along the shores of fast-moving water, as they can easily slip on wet, muddy banks and be swept away.

The Sheriff’s Office recommends the following guidelines to stay safe around high water:

  • If flooding occurs, get to higher ground immediately.
  • Stay away from flood-prone areas, including dips, low spots, valleys, ditches, washes, etc.
  • Avoid flooded areas and those with fast-moving water. Do not attempt to cross a flowing stream. Six inches of moving water is all it takes to sweep a person off his or her feet.
  • Don’t allow children or pets to play near high water, storm drains, culverts or ditches.
  • Flooded roads could have significant damage hidden by floodwaters. Never drive through floodwaters or on flooded roads. If your vehicle stalls, leave it immediately and seek higher ground. It only takes two feet of water to carry away most automobiles.
  • Do not camp or park your vehicle along streams and washes, particularly when water levels are high or fluctuating.
  • Be especially cautious at night, when it is harder to recognize flood dangers.
  • Monitor NOAA Weather Radio or your local media for vital weather-related information.

To learn more about local flood risks, safety tips and resources, including free sandbag locations, download the Summit County Flood Information Packet at www.co.summit.co.us/floodRead on...

Posted on: June 11, 2015

Summit County Launches Community Chipping Program June 29

Photo of two workers taking material from a slash pile and feeding it into a portable wood chipper.

Free chipping program helps residents create defensible space to protect homes from wildfire

Contacts:
Dan Schroder, Director, Summit County CSU Extension
970-668-4140; dan.schroder@colostate.edu
Commissioner Dan Gibbs, Chair, Summit County Wildfire Council
970-333-4707; dang@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County government is kick...




Read on...

Posted on: June 4, 2015

Mountain Mentors Challenges Summit County for 30 Mentors in 30 Days

Mountain Mentors is working to recruit 30 caring adults during the 30 days in June

Contact:
Shawna Lane, Mountain Mentors Program Supervisor
Summit County Youth and Family Services
970-668-9182, ShawnaL@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Mountain Mentors is putting out a challenge to the Summit County community, asking caring adults ...


Read on...

Posted on: May 28, 2015

Summit County to Conduct Mass Casualty Incident Exercise June 3

Emergency response agencies will participate in a simulated school shooting at Summit Middle School on Wednesday

Contact:
Joel Cochran, Director, Summit County Emergency Management
970-423-8911, jcochran@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – The Summit County Office of Emergency Management will conduct a large-scale mass casualty incident exercise on the afternoon of...


Read on...

Posted on: May 18, 2015

Tenmile Recpath Open as Avalanche Danger Subsides

Path users can look forward to enhanced signage and resurfaced Snake River section this summer

Contact:
Katie Kent, Summit County Open Space and Trails
970-668-4092, katiek@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County is pleased to announce that the last remaining section of the paved Recreational Pathway System is now plowed and swept in tim...

Read on...

Posted on: May 13, 2015

Summit County Ambulance Service to Sponsor Blood Drive and Offer Free CPR and First Aid Classes

Classes will be held May 18 and 22; blood drive will take place May 21

Contacts:
Jamie Woodworth, Director, Summit County Ambulance Service
970-668-4121, jamiew@co.summit.co.us
Jenn Oese, Paramedic, Summit County Ambulance Service
970-668-4124, jenno@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – In recognition of National Emergency...




Read on...

Posted on: May 13, 2015

Major Improvements in Store for Summit County Shooting Range

The range will be closed for construction through July 2

Contacts:
Thad Noll, Assistant County Manager
970-453-3438, thadn@co.summit.co.us
Aaron Byrne, Director, SCRAP (Summit County Resource Allocation Park)
970-468-9263, aaronb@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Construction crews started work this week a...




Read on...

Posted on: April 27, 2015

Notices of Valuation to be Mailed May 1

The Summit County Assessor’s Office will send out notices of valuation to property owners on May 1

Contact:
Beverly Breakstone, Summit County Assessor
970-453-3492, beverlyb@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – The Summit County Assessor’s Office will mail out its biannual notices of valuation to local property owners on Friday, May 1. Colorado statute...


Read on...

Posted on: April 21, 2015

Summit County Announces Inaugural Household Hazardous Waste Collection Event May 16

Photo of piles of paint cans.

Summit County Resource Allocation Park will be open to the public on Saturday mornings, beginning June 6

Contacts:
Thad Noll, Assistant County Manager
970-453-3438, thadn@co.summit.co.us
Aaron Byrne, Director, Summit County Resource Allocation Park (SCRAP)
970-468-9263, aaronb@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County will hold its inaugural house...




Read on...

Posted on: April 10, 2015

Annual Prescription Take-Back at the 9Health Fair

Plastic bags full of prescription medications

Summit County urges residents to help prevent substance abuse and protect local ecosystems by dropping off unused and expired medications Saturday, April 18

Contact:
Laurie Blackwell
Coordinator, Healthy Futures Initiative
Summit County Youth and Family Services
970-668-9196; laurieb@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County is encouraging residents to give their medicine cabinets a spring cleaning...




Read on...

Posted on: April 1, 2015

Mountain Meals Program Receives Share the Love Grant

Subaru’s seventh Share the Love event supports Summit County seniors

Contact:
Lorie Williams
Manager, Summit County Community and Senior Center
970-668-2945, LorieW@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – The Summit County Community and Senior Center is proud to announce it has received a $900 grant from Meals on Wheels Amer...



Read on...

Posted on: March 24, 2015

Summit County Receives $975,000 for Swan River Restoration

Photo of a valley floor covered in large piles of rock.

Colorado Water Conservation Board and Colorado Basin Roundtable provide funds for stream restoration project to address historical mining impacts

Contact:
Jason Lederer, Summit County Open Space & Trails
970-668-4213, jlederer@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY, CO – The Colorado Water Conservation Board and Colorado Basin Roundtable together awarded a $975,000 Water Supply Reserve Account Grant to Summit County in support of a large-scale stream restoration project on the Swan River.

The restoration area includes approximately 3,500 linear feet of the river along Tiger Road in the Swan River drainage, 11 miles northeast of Breckenridge, on land jointly owned by Summit County and the Town of Breckenridge.

“We’re extremely fortunate and grateful to have received this grant,” County Commissioner Karn Stiegelmeier said. “Undoing the damage from Summit County’s mining past is an immense undertaking, but these infusions of funding are critical in accelerating our progress.”

Summit County has a long and prolific mining history. Several valleys in southern Summit County’s Upper Blue River watershed, including the Swan River valley, were dredge-mined for precious metals in the early 1900s. Scars from this mining past are scattered in valleys where dredge boats sucked up sediment from depths of up to 70 feet, casting aside rock and other material, effectively turning the rivers upside down. Today, vast expanses of dredge piles remain.

As an abandoned dredge mine site, the Swan River provides little in the way of ecological, recreational, or aesthetic value. Much of the valley floor is covered with large piles of barren cobble. What remains of the stream channel follows a straight ditch paralleling Tiger Road, where flows only occur during periods of high water and remain subsurface for much of the year. Recreational opportunities and wildlife habitat value are almost non-existent, despite the fact that the three forks of the Swan River upstream of this site are an extremely popular year-round recreation area.

In partnership with the Town of Breckenridge, this initial phase of restoration work will contribute to the overarching goal of restoring the ecological integrity of the entire Swan River watershed by reconnecting more than 19 miles of stream and riparian areas now segregated by dredge piles. Upstream stretches of the Swan River pass through private land, and the Forest Service is coordinating with landowners to implement restoration work in those areas.

“When the County and Town purchased land in the Swan River valley, our goals were to restore the natural ecology of the stream and to enhance recreational opportunities,” Summit County Open Space and Trails Director Brian Lorch said. “Much of the overall project’s success is due to strong partnerships with project stakeholders and the support we receive from those in our community who care so much about this special place.”

The project team aims to create a natural and stable river channel meandering though a mosaic of wetland, riparian and upland habitats, similar to what would have existed prior to dredge mining. The restored channel and adjacent areas will provide a variety of habitat features for fish, mammals, insects and other native species.

One of the long-term project goals is to expand the habitat for native Colorado cutthroat trout. Improved stream crossings will be installed at Muggins Gulch Road, Tiger Road and Rock Island Road to better facilitate natural stream flow of the new channel and to reduce the number and severity of flooding events. The restoration plan also includes a new soft-surface trail that will provide access to the adjacent White River National Forest and restored stream. Total project costs are estimated to be about $2 million.

The project planning has been a highly collaborative effort, with significant public involvement and partnerships and consultation with state and local governments and private entities. In addition to the County and Town, active participants in the project planning and funding include the U.S. Forest Service, Colorado Parks and Wildlife, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Trout Unlimited, Blue River Watershed Group, Friends of the Dillon Ranger District and the National Forest Foundation.

“With their recent significant funding support, Colorado Water Conservation Board staff will also assume an active role in this project,” Summit County Open Space and Trails Resource Specialist Jason Lederer said. “We very much appreciate their financial support and the technical expertise they bring to this project.”

The Swan River restoration project is funded through a variety of sources, including previous grant funding from the Colorado Water Conservation Board that aided in planning phases. This year’s work will receive $300,000 in support from the Summit County Safety First Fund, approved by voters in November 2014. The Safety First funding was critical in leveraging funds from CWCB. Trout Unlimited will soon launch a project website that will enable members of the public to contribute to the river’s restoration.

For more information, contact Jason Lederer at the Summit County Open Space and Trails Department at 970-668-4213 or jlederer@co.summit.co.usRead on...

Posted on: March 17, 2015

Summit Drive Named First Phase in Summit Cove Loop Project

Phase 1 Map - SCLP.jpg

Summit County will kick off the Summit Cove Loop Project this summer, with road resurfacing and new bicycle/pedestrian lanes along Summit Drive

Contacts:
Thad Noll, Assistant County Manager
970-453-3438, thadn@co.summit.co.us
Don Reimer, Senior Planner, Summit County Planning Department
970-668-4207, donr@co.summit.co.us
Kate Berg, Senior Planner, Summit County Planning Department
970-668-4...




Read on...

Posted on: March 5, 2015

Measles Outbreak Highlights the Importance of Immunizations

Though measles is highly contagious, it is also highly preventable through vaccinations.

Contact:
Amy Wineland
Director, Summit County Public Health
970-668-9161

With measles cases continuing to rise in the United States this year, it’s important to take a moment to understand the facts about this disease, the current outbreaks and the ...


Read on...

Posted on: March 2, 2015

Summit Stage Receives $1.6 Million in Grants from CDOT

Photo of a bus shelter and bus, with a shopping center in the background.

The state agency will help fund new buses and improvements at the Frisco Transfer Center

Contact:
Jim Andrew, Summit Stage Director
970-668-4161, jima@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – The Colorado Department of Transportation has awarded the Summit Stage $1.6 million in funding through the Colorado FASTER Transit Grants program and federa...


Read on...

Posted on: February 18, 2015

Summit County Holds Free Electronics Recycling and Pharmaceuticals Collection Event March 14

Photo of large cardboard boxes filled with computers, televisions and other electronics.

In response to the overwhelming turnout for January's event, Summit County will offer a second collection event in March

Contacts:
Thad Noll, Assistant County Manager
970-453-3438, thadn@co.summit.co.us
Aaron Byrne, Director, Summit County Resource Allocation Park (SCRAP)
970-468-9263, aaronb@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County will hold another free elect...




Read on...

Posted on: February 10, 2015

Summit County Receives State Grant for District Attorney and Probation Facility

Photo of a banner hanging on a fence in front of a construction site. The banner reads, Congratulations Summit County. This project is funded in part by an Energy and Mineral Impact Assistance Grant a

The Colorado Department of Local Affairs awarded Summit County $600,000 to support the renovation of the former Summit County South Branch Library to house District Attorney and Probation Offices

Contact:
Scott Vargo, Assistant County Manager
970-453-3404, scottv@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County has received a $600,000 grant from the Colorado Department of Local Affairs’ Energy and Mineral Impact Assistance Program to support the design and construction of new offices for the Fifth Judicial District Attorney and Summit County Probation.

“We’re extremely grateful to the Department of Local Affairs for this generous award,” Summit County Commissioner Thomas Davidson said. “These new offices represent a much-needed expansion of our facilities at the Summit County Justice Center complex, and the grant covers a significant portion of the project cost.”

The new offices are now under construction at the former site of the Summit County South Branch Library, which moved into its new facility on Harris Street in Breckenridge in January. The former library building, located adjacent to the Summit County Justice Center, is being renovated and expanded from 3,500 square feet to 8,400 square feet. Without the state grant, Summit County would not have been able to undertake the full expansion.

The project will allow the Fifth Judicial District Attorney to return to the Justice Center complex from its current location, about 2.5 miles away. The existing office location impacts staff efficiency and lacks appropriate security and adequate space for District Attorney staff, which is experiencing considerable increases in its caseload. The new facility will feature security cameras and monitoring provided by the Summit County Sheriff’s Office, located in the Summit County Justice Center.

In addition, the project addresses the need for expanded space by Summit County Probation, which has also seen significant caseload increases in recent years. The space vacated by Summit County Probation will be used to accommodate growth in the Sheriff’s Office and County and District Courts over the next 10 to 15 years.

The total cost of the project is estimated to be $2.5 million. The renovation and expansion are scheduled to be complete by July 1.

The Energy and Mineral Impact Assistance Program assists political subdivisions that are socially and/or economically impacted by the development, processing or energy conversion of minerals and mineral fuels. Funds come from the state severance tax on energy and mineral production and from a portion of the state's share of royalties paid to the federal government for mining and drilling of minerals and mineral fuels on federally owned land. The program was created by the legislature in 1977Read on...

Posted on: February 8, 2015

What Community Water Fluoridation Means for Your Oral Health

CDC_Fluoridation_70.jpg

This public health advancement marks its 70th anniversary in 2015

By Dan Hendershott, Environmental Health Manager
Summit County Public Health

In 2015, most of us take our oral health for granted. Nearly everyone has a full set of teeth (unless you play a lot of hockey). This was not the case in the early 1900s, when oral health in the United States was a big problem. Ten percent of World War II recruits were rejected because they did not have at least six opposing teeth. And it was common for an affluent bride or high school graduate to receive a gift of dentures. School children typically developed three to four new cavities each year, and it was normal for adults to have full extractions and receive complete dentures.

What made the difference between then and now? Why don't we see this degree of oral decay today? The difference is due in large part to community water fluoridation, a practice that marks its 70th anniversary this year. Fluoridation is one of the top 10 public-health advancements, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), saving Americans an estimated $38 in dental treatment costs for every $1 spent fluoridating. So why is this issue so often the subject of heated debates? A little historical and scientific background is helpful.

Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral. In fact, some studies label it as the fifth most abundant element in the earth’s crust. Fluoride caught the interest of public health folks right here in Colorado in the early 1900s, when a young dentist, Dr. Frederick McKay, opened a dental practice in Colorado Springs. He quickly noticed that many local residents were showing up with discolored teeth. Not finding anything about this in the literature, McKay began to study. He discovered the discoloration to be a result of naturally occurring fluoride in the drinking water. More importantly, McKay observed that these stained teeth were surprisingly resistant to decay.

Years later, the City of Grand Rapids, Mich., was convinced of the benefits of optimal fluoride intake and began fluoridating its community water supply. A cohort study was initiated to observe the difference in the occurrence of cavities between children growing up in Grand Rapids and Muskegon, Mich. Fifteen years into the study, the kids in Grand Rapids had 50-70% fewer cavities, and the parents in Muskegon demanded that the study stop and that their water be optimally fluoridated so their children could receive the same benefit.

Today, the benefits of community water fluoridation are not as obvious, because fluoride is consumed in other ways as well, such as in toothpaste, foods and bottled drinks. It is frequently at optimal levels in bottled drinks because most bottling plants are located within cities that optimally fluoridate their water. But even with these other sources of fluoride in our lives, community water fluoridation continues to be effective in reducing dental decay by about 25%. Studies have shown that the benefits of fluoride are best realized when it’s ingested. That way, the fluoride ends up in the saliva, protecting teeth 24 hours a day.

Community water fluoridation is endorsed by the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Medical Association, the American Dental Association and the World Health Organization. Yet even after more than 70 years of scientific study, the practice continues to generate debate. A quick Google search on the subject will turn up conspiracy theories of communist brainwashing plots, purported links to decreased IQ and other myths about fluoride.

Those who assert that fluoride is toxic are, in fact, 100% right. At high levels, it is indeed toxic. As with medications or dietary supplements, there is a beneficial amount, and there is a toxic amount. The bottle of ibuprofen in my desk drawer instructs, “The smallest effective dose should be used … Do not take more than six tablets in 24 hours.” It can be beneficial to take one or two ibuprofen tablets to relieve a headache. However, taking more than six tablets in a day can damage your liver. The same principle applies to fluoride. Research has shown that 0.7-1.2 parts per million (ppm) is the smallest effective dose, depending on the climate you live in. This is why many municipal drinking water systems fluoridate to this level. In Summit County, these include the Town of Breckenridge, the Town of Dillon and the Town of Silverthorne water systems. The maximum level allowed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is 4.0 ppm.

It’s important to know how much fluoride is in your home’s water for two reasons. First and foremost, water with natural fluoride levels above 4.0 ppm should not be consumed. It is possible that water from some private wells in Summit County could contain fluoride at these levels. Dental fluorosis – the discoloration Dr. McKay observed in Colorado Springs – can occur when young children consume too much fluoride (from any source) over long periods of time. Second, you should know whether there is sufficient fluoride in your water to receive the substantial oral health benefits this mineral can offer.

Customers on public water systems can simply call their water department to find out what their fluoride levels are. Information on many of the public drinking water systems in Summit County can also be found on the Summit County Public Health website at www.co.summit.co.us/drinkingwater. Households on private wells can have their water tested. Testing can be performed by private laboratories and at the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. The cost is typically about $17 to $20. If your water lacks optimal fluoride levels, talk with your doctor, who can prescribe fluoride supplements for you or your children to ensure that your family’s oral health is appropriately safeguarded.

For more information on water and fluoride, visit www.ada.org/fluoride or www.cdc.gov/fluoridation, or call Summit County Public Health at 970-668-4070.

Summit County Environmental Health works to control environmental factors that impact human health and the environment. We address issues such as food sanitation, air quality, water quality and communicable diseases. Environmental Health is a division of Summit County Public Health, which provides services to prevent disease and to promote and protect the health of the communityRead on...

Posted on: January 15, 2015

January is Radon Action Month

Summit County offers free radon test kits that can detect this carcinogen in local homes

Contact:
Maya Kulick, Senior Environmental Health Specialist, Summit County Environmental Health
970-668-4070, mayak@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – In recognition of National Radon Action Month, Summit County Environmental Health is encouraging all ...


Read on...

Posted on: January 14, 2015

Summit County Holds Free Electronics Recycling and Pharmaceuticals Collection Event Jan. 31

Photo of bins containing old computers and TVs

The post-holiday collection event is part of water quality protections funded by Ballot Measure 1A

Contacts:
Thad Noll, Assistant County Manager
970-453-3438, thadn@co.summit.co.us
Aaron Byrne, Director, Summit County Resource Allocation Park (SCRAP)
970-468-9263, aaronb@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County will hold its inaugural free ...




Read on...

Posted on: January 12, 2015

Summit County and Town of Breck Receive GOCO Funding for Trail Construction

Great Outdoors Colorado will fund Rocky Mountain Youth Corps crews for trail work in the Golden Horseshoe

Contact:
Katie Kent, Summit County Open Space & Trails
970-668-4092, katiek@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY, CO – Great Outdoors Colorado has awarded a $31,500 grant to Summit County and the Town of Breckenridge to employ the Rocky Mountain Youth Corps Association (RMYC) for trail construction. Grant-funded youth corps crews will build new trails within the Golden Horseshoe this summer, improving recreational access and protection of natural resources in one of Summit County’s most treasured backcountry areas.

The Colorado Youth Corps Association announced that 200 Colorado young people will get jobs this summer working on critical outdoor recreation and land conservation projects throughout the state. These projects will enhance Colorado’s trails, parks, open spaces and wildlife habitat in 14 counties. Funds for this project were awarded by Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO), which receives a portion of Colorado Lottery proceeds, to the Colorado Youth Corps Association for use by accredited youth corps.

The goal of the program is to employ youth and young adults (ages 14-25) throughout the state on critical outdoor recreation and land conservation projects in partnership with local governments and open space agencies. In June 2014, the GOCO board of trustees announced that GOCO would invest $500,000 of lottery proceeds in youth corps projects in 2015. GOCO has approved the dispersal of $250,000 for local governments and $250,000 for open space organizations.

In Summit County, $31,500 was awarded for five weeks of RMYC work, which will help the open space programs of Summit County and the Town of Breckenridge complete much-needed trail construction on the Galena Extension Trail, Rich Gulch/Mineral Hill Trail and Wirepatch Trail within the Golden Horseshoe area.

The trails cross and provide access to lands that have been a key priority for open space acquisitions and more than a decade of U.S. Forest Service review. The trail work will address broken connections and long-deferred realignment needs of these trails, which serve as routes from residential areas to popular backcountry destinations.

Both Summit County and the Town of Breckenridge open space programs have prioritized expanding and maintaining trails throughout the Upper Blue Basin to enhance the quality of life in and around Summit County. Within the Golden Horseshoe area alone, the Town and County jointly own more than 3,000 acres.

“Our collaboration with the Town of Breckenridge continues to strengthen our work to protect open space and enhance recreation opportunities in the Upper Blue Basin,” County Commissioner Dan Gibbs said. “This GOCO grant is a perfect example of the benefits of this great partnership.”

For more information, contact Katie Kent in the Summit County Open Space and Trails Department at 970-668-4092 or katiek@co.summit.co.usRead on...

Posted on: January 7, 2015

Summit County Celebrates National Mentoring Month

Photo of a woman standing with a girl at a ski area

Youth and Family Services is seeking new volunteers to participate in the Mountain Mentors program

Contact:
Shawna Lane, Mountain Mentors Program Supervisor
Summit County Youth and Family Services
970-668-9182, shawnal@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County Youth and Family Services is inviting local residents to celebrate the 14th annual ...



Read on...

Posted on: December 24, 2014

Summit Stage to Boost Public Transit Capacity on New Year’s Eve

The Summit Stage will run extra buses on New Year’s Eve to accommodate holiday crowds

Contact:
Jim Andrew, Summit Stage Director
970-668-4161, jima@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – The Summit Stage is encouraging residents and visitors to stay safe this New Year’s Eve by taking the bus to and from holiday festivities. Summit County’s f...


Read on...

Posted on: December 19, 2014

Summit County Protects 363 Acres of Open Space in 2014

The Summit County Open Space Department finished the year with 16 land transactions that protect natural and historical resources

Contact:
Katherine King, Senior Resource Specialist, Open Space & Trails
970-668-4061, katherinek@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County secured important protections in 2014 for 363 acres of wildlife habitat, historical resources, outdoor recreation areas and view corridors. In total, the Summit County Open Space Department completed 16 land transactions, protecting 317 acres of fee simple land and 45.89 acres of partial interest mining claims, at a cost of $1.4 million to the voter-approved Open Space Fund.

Among the most notable 2014 acquisitions are the Sts. John town site, near Montezuma, and the Laurium Mine property, on Mt. Baldy. Summit County purchased the historic Sts. John town site and about 80 acres of nearby backcountry mining claims in the Sts. John Creek basin in July. The area is a critical travel corridor for lynx.

“The Sts. John purchase is one of the most important and significant acquisitions the program has made in recent years,” Open Space Director Brian Lorch said. “It’s not often that you get the opportunity to preserve such an interesting chapter in our community’s history, while also protecting recreational access and valuable wildlife habitat.”

In 1870, Sts. John was the largest town in Summit County, with a population of 71, according to the U.S. Census. With historic 1800s cabins and structures in good condition on the property, Sts. John is a popular destination for history buffs and is often written about in local publications. Summit County staff will be discussing potential management strategies for preservation and interpretation of the site in 2015.

In the Upper Blue Basin, protecting scenic qualities and recreational opportunities on Mt. Baldy is a high priority for the open space programs of both Summit County and the Town of Breckenridge. In September, they jointly purchased two parcels, the 18-acre City Claims and 104-acre Laurium Claims. Both purchases support continued non-motorized recreation in the area. The City Claims overlie Baldy Road and the primary routes backcountry skiers use to access the front side of Baldy.

The Laurium property, located at the end of County Road 528, provides access to and alternate parking for Mt. Baldy. The mountain is an iconic part of the visual backdrop to Breckenridge and is popular for summer and winter recreation. The Laurium Mine, one of the oldest mines in the Breckenridge mining district, began operation in the 1870s and produced gold and silver intermittently into the 1930s. Remains of mining structures, including a stamp mill and cabins, provide glimpses into the property’s historical past.

“The Laurium Mine embodies much of what we seek in open space acquisitions: trail access, streams and wetlands, valuable wildlife habitat, historical structures and scenic backdrops,” said Open Space and Trails Planner Scott Reid, of the Town of Breckenridge.

In addition to a number of smaller backcountry mining claims located throughout the county, Summit County protected two key 25-acre inholdings in the White River National Forest located in the upper reaches of the Swan River drainage, via joint purchases with the Town of Breckenridge.

The County, Town and U.S. Forest Service have committed to protecting and enhancing Swan River habitat for native cutthroat trout and other wildlife. One of the claims purchased in the area, the Candler Lode, had been accessed via a route that required vehicles to run directly through the South Fork of the Swan, degrading watershed health. This route has been identified as closed in the USFS Travel Management Plan due to water quality concerns.

A diverse group of stakeholders has initiated an effort to restore and provide recreational opportunities along a 2.5-mile stretch of the Swan River that was historically dredge mined, including properties purchased as open space. County funding approved by voters in November for water quality improvement, along with other agency contributions, grants and fundraising by the group, will help move the project forward in 2015.

The other 25-acre claim, located at the edge of the Keystone Ski Area boundary, and between the Upper Blue and Snake River basins, is in an area identified as critical wildlife habitat for lynx.

“Overall, the purchases we made this year are vital to protecting public access to U.S. Forest Service lands and preserving the natural character of Summit County’s backcountry,” Summit County Open Space Director Brian Lorch said. “Even when the total acreage of a given acquisition is relatively small, the resulting benefits to the surrounding ecosystem and recreational access can be tremendous.”

Working with the Town of Breckenridge, the Summit County Open Space Program constructed a number of new trails in the Upper Blue River Basin in 2014, including the Turks Trail Extension, made possible by a 20-acre open space acquisition at the end of 2013, and the Wire Patch Trail. Both are located in French Gulch. Another trail construction project on jointly owned property in 2014 included the ZL Trail, connecting the trails near Breckenridge to the upper forks of the Swan River. In total, more than 800 volunteers assisted the open space programs with trail construction and maintenance in 2014.

The Summit County Open Space Program is funded by a mill levy approved by voters in four elections, most recently in 2008. This 12-year funding mechanism provides about $1.2 million per year for open space property acquisition.

Established in 1996, the Summit County Open Space Program has preserved the character of over 15,000 acres of land in Summit County via purchases, donations and conservation easements. For more information, visit www.co.summit.co.us/openspace, or call Katherine King at 970-668-4061Read on...

Posted on: December 15, 2014

Summit Board of County Commissioners Adopts 2015 Budget

Major capital projects scheduled for Copper, Summit Cove and Montezuma Road; Safety First Fund provides critical support for ambulance services, 911 communications and water quality

Contacts:
Karn Stiegelmeier, Chair, Board of County Commissioners
970-471-2298, karns@co.summit.co.us
Gary Martinez, County Manager
970-453-3401, garym@co.summit.co.us
Marty Ferris, Finance Director
970-453-3434. martyf@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COU...





Read on...

Posted on: December 12, 2014

Summit County Receives Certificate of Financial Excellence

The Government Finance Officers Association has awarded Summit County a Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting for the 26th consecutive year

Contacts:
Gary Martinez, County Manager
970-453-3401, garym@co.summit.co.us
Marty Ferris, Finance Director
970-453-3434. martyf@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – For the 26th year in a row, Summit County has received high marks for its financial repo...


Read on...

Posted on: December 2, 2014

Summit County Public Health Issues Tularemia Alert

Beavers in Summit County have tested positive for the bacterial disease; the number of tularemia cases across Colorado is much higher than normal

Contacts:
Amy Wineland, Director, Summit County Public Health Department
970-668-9195, amyw@co.summit.co.us
Steph Stookey, Public Health Nurse
970-668-9715, stephanes@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Colorado is experiencing higher-than-normal tul...



Read on...

Posted on: November 21, 2014

Summit Stage Announces Enhancements to Winter Bus Service

Photo of a Summit Stage bus stop sign

Express routes provide shorter travel times to the slopes; Swan Mountain Flyer starts running Nov. 23

Contact:
Jim Andrew, Director, Summit Stage
970-668-4161, jima@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County residents and visitors will have shorter rides to the slopes this season on the Summit Stage, thanks to new morning express routes. The new r...

Read on...

Posted on: November 12, 2014

Summit Cove Loop Project to Improve Safety for Pedestrians and Cyclists

Summit County will add bicycle/pedestrian lanes along Summit Drive and Cove Boulevard; a community open house is scheduled for Dec. 10

Contacts:
Kate Berg, Senior Planner, Summit County Planning Department
970-668-4204, kateb@co.summit.co.us
Thad Noll, Assistant County Manager
970-453-3438, thadn@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County residents will see big improvements to ...



Read on...

Posted on: November 10, 2014

Summit County Ambulance Paramedic Receives Lifetime Achievement Award

Longtime Breckenridge resident Bob Shedd recognized by state EMS organization for more than three decades of exceptional service

Contact:
Jamie Woodworth, Director, Summit County Ambulance Service
970-668-4121, jamiew@co.summit.co.us

KEYSTONE – The Emergency Medical Services Association of Colorado presented its Lifetime Achievement Award to Summit County Ambulance Service Par...

Read on...

Posted on: November 6, 2014

Flu Vaccines Provide Important Health Protections

Summit County Public Health encourages residents to get their annual flu shots

Contacts:
Amy Wineland, Director, Summit County Public Health Department
970-668-9195, amyw@co.summit.co.us
Sara Lopez, Public Health Nurse
970-668-9709, saral@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – With flu season upon us, Summit County Public Health is ...



Read on...

Posted on: November 4, 2014

Voters Approve Summit County Measure 1A

Ballot measure will provide $3.73 million annually for emergency services and water quality protections

Contact:
Karn Stiegelmeier, Commissioner: 970-471-2298
Thomas Davidson, Commissioner: 970-333-9817
Dan Gibbs, Commissioner: 970-333-4707

SUMMIT COUNTY — Summit County voters approved Measure 1A, the Summit County Clerk and Recorder’s Office announce...



Read on...

Posted on: October 30, 2014

Summit County Wraps Up Successful 2014 Community Chipping Program

a cut above chipper 2 (2).jpg

More than 1,800 local households participated in the free countywide slash-removal program to protect homes from wildfire

Contacts:
Dan Schroder, Director, Summit County CSU Extension
970-668-4140; dan.schroder@colostate.edu
Commissioner Dan Gibbs, Chair, Summit County Wildfire Council
970-333-4707; dang@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County government and th...



Read on...

Posted on: October 24, 2014

Local Ebola Risk Remains Low

Summit health officials are meeting regularly to stay prepared

Contact:
Summit County Public Health Director Amy Wineland: 970-668-9195

With the Ebola virus garnering national and international headlines, and the busy holiday travel season right around the corner, you may be wondering what efforts are under way l...Read on...

Posted on: October 14, 2014

October is Conflict Resolution Month in Summit

County commissioners encourage residents to utilize community resources to resolve conflicts in constructive ways

Contact:
Karn Stiegelmeier, Chair, Summit Board of County Commissioners
970-471-2298, karns@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – The Summit Board of County Commissioners proclaimed October to be Conflict Resolution Month in Summit County. In doing so, th...

Read on...

Posted on: October 7, 2014

Summit County Receives $100,000 from State for Wildfire Mitigation

State funds will support continuation of Summit County Chipping Program in 2015 to protect homes from wildfire

Contact:
Dan Schroder, Director, Summit County CSU Extension
970-668-4140, dan.schroder@colostate.edu

SUMMIT COUNTY, Colo. – Summit County government has been awarded $100,000 in funding from the Colorado Wildfire Risk Reduction Grant Program to con...
Read on...

Posted on: October 6, 2014

Summit County Elections Office to Mail Ballots to All Registered Voters Oct. 14

All registered voters will automatically receive mail ballots; deadline to submit a registration application and receive a mail ballot is Oct. 27

Contact:
Kathy Neel, Summit County Clerk and Recorder
970-453-3471, kathyn@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY, Colo. – In preparation for the 2014 General Election, the Summit County Clerk and Recorder is encouraging voters to check that their addresses a...

Read on...

Posted on: October 2, 2014

New Affordable Housing Complex Completed in Silverthorne

Photo of a child riding a piece of playground equipment.

Villa Sierra Madre II, developed by Catholic Charities, includes 64 rental units and new playground

Contacts:
Wendy Oldenbrook, Director of Marketing and Communications, Catholic Charities
720-377-1383; woldenbrook@ccdenver.org
Jim Curnutte, Summit County Community Development Director
970-668-4203; jimc@co.summit.co.us

SILVERTHORNE, CO – Villa Sie...



Read on...

Posted on: September 26, 2014

Summit County Encourages Pet Vaccinations in Recognition of World Rabies Day, Sept. 28

Pet owners can help prevent the spread of rabies by staying on schedule with vaccinations; people should avoid contact with wildlife

Contact:
Lesley Hall, Summit County Animal Control and Shelter
970-668-4191, lesleyh@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY, CO — In recognition of World Rabies Day, Sept. 28, Summit County Animal Control and Shelter is urging pet owners to ensure their anima...

Read on...

Posted on: September 24, 2014

Summit County Government Named Gold-Level Bicycle Friendly Business

League of American Bicyclists recognizes Summit County offices for their contributions to biking

Contact:
Katie Kent, Summit County Open Space and Trails: 970-668-4092

SUMMIT COUNTY, CO — The League of American Bicyclists recognized Summit County Government today with a Gold-level Bicycle Friendly Business (BFB) award, joining more than 800 visio...
Read on...

Posted on: September 23, 2014

Summit County and Town of Breckenridge Acquire Laurium Mine Site

Open Space acquisition protects history and recreation resources

Contact
Brian Lorch, Summit County Open Space and Trails: 970-668-4067

SUMMIT COUNTY, CO – On Sept. 10, Summit County Government and the Town of Breckenridge open space programs jointly acquired the Laurium Mine property, a 104-acre parcel on the west...
Read on...

Posted on: September 8, 2014

Summit County Launches New Online Tool for Building Inspections

eTRAKiT allows for convenient online scheduling and tracking of inspections for construction projects and septic systems

Contacts:
Scott Hoffman, Chief Building Official, Summit County Building Inspection Department: 970-668-4082
Sarah Connelly, Community Development Department: 970-668-4086

SUMMIT COUNTY, CO – The Summit County Community Development Department has imp...

Read on...

Posted on: September 4, 2014

Montezuma Road Reopens at Washout Site

Montezuma Bridge Open.jpg

Two-way traffic is restored over the Snake River with completion of a new 70-foot bridge

Contacts:
Thad Noll, Assistant County Manager: 970-453-3438
Robert Jacobs, County Engineer: 970-668-4212

SUMMIT COUNTY – Montezuma Road opened to two-way traffic across a new bridge over the Snake River Thursday evening, restoring vehicle access wher...

Read on...

Posted on: September 4, 2014

Summit County Ambulance Service Urges Drivers to Check Tires Before Winter Arrives

SCAS and Meadow Creek Tire offer free tire-safety checks at fire safety expo, Saturday, Sept. 6

Contacts:
Jamie Woodworth, Summit County Ambulance Service: 970-668-4121
Jim Levi, Summit County Ambulance Service: 970-668-4122
Gary Bergman, Meadow Creek Tire: 970-668-5686

SUMMIT COUNTY – With the arrival of winter weather right around the corner...


Read on...

Posted on: August 29, 2014

Make a Difference Day Takes Place Sept. 13

Summit County’s 16th annual day of community volunteering will take place one month earlier than in past years

Contact:
Laurie Blackwell, Summit County Youth & Family Services, 970-668-9196

SUMMIT COUNTY, CO — Organizers of Summit County’s Make a Difference Day are encouraging residents to mark their calendars for this year’s event. The annual countywide day of community service will take place from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 13 – about a month earlier than in past years.

“Make a Difference Day is always one of Summit County’s greatest community events,” said Summit County Youth & Family Services Director Robin Albert. “But the weather in October is a bit of a gamble, so we decided to hold this year’s event in September instead.”

Make a Difference Day is a national day of giving back to the community. Last year in Summit County, the event drew nearly 400 volunteers, who mobilized to provide community service at more than 30 local worksites. Activities included building and maintaining trails, painting a building for a local nonprofit, improving playgrounds, and cleaning and winterizing historic properties.

Make a Difference Day participants can pre-register online through Sept. 5 at SummitSource.org. Day-of registration will be available at 8 a.m. at the event check-in at the Summit Stage Bus Barn, behind the County Commons in Frisco, but registration lines can be long. All participants will receive free breakfast at the Bus Barn before they head to their worksites, and they’ll receive free lunch when they return.

The event doubles as a food drive for local families in need. Participants are encouraged to bring nonperishable items to the event check-in to contribute to food banks in Summit County.

Make a Difference Day is sponsored by a broad coalition of local community organizations and businesses, including Summit County Rotary, Summit County government, Arapahoe Basin, Copper Mountain, Keystone Resort, Carlos Miguel’s Mexican Restaurant, 1st Bank, the Summit Daily News, Alpine Bank, Colorado Tents and Events, American Family Insurance, Rocky Mountain Cabanas, Starbucks, Silverheels Bar and Grill and Summit Association of Realtors.

For more information about Summit County’s Make a Difference Day, visit SummitSource.org.Read on...

Additional Info...
Posted on: August 22, 2014

Montezuma Bridge Installation Rescheduled for Aug. 28-29

Photo of a backhoe alongside a river, preparing for bridge installation.

Periodic road closures will also take effect during paving operations

Contact: Thad Noll, Assistant County Manager: 970-453-3438

SUMMIT COUNTY, CO — Work to install a new bridge on Montezuma Road over the Snake River has been rescheduled to take place Aug. 28 and 29, followed by roadway paving processes. Periodic road cl...Read on...

Posted on: August 19, 2014

Summit BOCC Refers Funding Measure to November Ballot

Ballot question would provide $3.73 million per year in temporary funding for water quality and emergency services, including wildfire response and ambulance services

Contacts:
Karn Stiegelmeier, Commissioner: 970-471-2298
Thomas Davidson, Commissioner: 970-333-9817
Dan Gibbs, Commissioner: 970-333-4707

SUMMIT COUNTY, CO — The Summit Board of County Commissioners voted unanimously Tuesday in favor of a resolution...Read on...

Posted on: August 15, 2014

Montezuma Bridge Installation Work Scheduled for Aug. 18 – Sept. 5

Periodic road closures will take effect during site preparation and bridge installation

Contact: Julie Sutor, Public Affairs Coordinator,
970-453-3498 (o); 970-409-9461 (m)

SUMMIT COUNTY — Work to install a new bridge on Montezuma Road over the Snake River is scheduled to take place Aug. 18 through Sept. 5. Periodic road closures will b...Read on...

Posted on: August 13, 2014

Summit County Open Space Program Acquires Sts. John Townsite

Photo of a high-alpine valley in summer

Acquisition of parcels near Montezuma protects outstanding historical and ecological values

Contact: Brian Lorch, Director, Summit County Open Space and Trails
970-668-4067

SUMMIT COUNTY — Summit County Open Space and Trails Department recently acquired the former Sts. John townsite, once the largest town in Summit County. The purchase, fina...Read on...

Posted on: July 3, 2014

Summit County Celebrates Grand Opening of Tenmile Canyon Recpath Extension

A group of officials stands at the entrance to a new bridge over Tenmile Creek. One of them addresses the crowd.

The newest addition to the Summit County Recpath system enhances scenic views and improves connections from Tenmile Canyon to Highway 91 and Copper Mountain

Contact: Brian Lorch, Director, Summit County Open Space and Trails, 970-668-4060

COPPER MOUNTAIN — Summit County officially unveiled the Tenmile Canyon Recpath extension Thursday. The newest addition to the county’s 57-mile recreational pathway system...Read on...

Posted on: July 3, 2014

Summit County Encourages Safe Cycling on Holiday Weekend

Bicyclists and vehicle drivers should be familiar with etiquette and rules of the road

Bicyclists and vehicle drivers should be familiar with etiquette and rules of the road

Contacts:
Thad Noll, Assistant County Manager: 970-453-3438; thadn@co.summit.co.usBrian Lorch, Summit County Open Space and Trails: 970-668-4067; brianl@co.summit.co....Read on...

Posted on: June 24, 2014

Summit County Launches Community Chipping Program June 30

Free chipping program helps property owners create defensible space to protect homes from wildfire

Free chipping program helps property owners create defensible space to protect homes from wildfire

Contacts:
Dan Schroder, Director, Summit County CSU Extension, 970-668-4140; dan.schroder@colostate.edu

Commissioner Dan Gibbs, Chair, Summit County Wi...Read on...

Posted on: June 19, 2014

Summit County Celebrates Bike to Work Day Wednesday, June 25

Free breakfast and prize drawings offered to bicycle commuters

Free breakfast and prize drawings offered to bicycle commuters

Contact: Katie Kent, Summit County Open Space & Trails
970-668-4092

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County and the Physical Activity and Nutrition Team of the Summit (PANTS) invite the community to participate in 2014 Bike to Work Day on Wednesday, June 25. Bicycle commuters can receive free breakfast and be entered into prize drawings.

“Bike to Work Day is a chance for Summit residents to come together in celebration of Summit County’s fantastic Recpath system and Bicycle-Friendly Community status,” said Katie Kent of Summit County Open Space and Trails. “It can also serve as the perfect opportunity to jumpstart a bike-commuting habit, which has great environmental benefits, reduces stress and boosts physical fitness.”

Summit County has celebrated Bike to Work Day since 2010, and dozens of commuters participate annually. This year, with the assistance of PANTS, the County has expanded the number of breakfast stations and drawing prizes throughout the community.

All cyclists are welcome to stop by any (or all) of the four free breakfast stations between 7 and 9 a.m. for free coffee, juice, muffins and bagels. Riders will also be entered into prize drawings at each location. Breakfast stations will be at the following locations:

• Dillon: Marina Park, adjacent to the Recpath near Dillon Amphitheater

• Silverthorne: Family and Intercultural Resource Center, 251 W. Fourth St., next to the Summit Stage transfer station

• Frisco: County Commons, Library entrance, 0037 Peak One Dr.

• Breckenridge: Old County Courthouse, 208 E. Lincoln Ave.

“Summit County Open Space and Trails’ new partnership with PANTS has led to an excellent expansion of Bike to Work Day,” Summit County Commissioner Dan Gibbs said. “This is a great chance for everyone in the community to try biking to work for a day. Often, people realize how much they like it, and they continue to commute by bicycle multiple times throughout the summer. With free food, coffee, and prizes, why not?”

To make bike commuting easy and safe, Summit County Open Space and Trails offers the following tips:

• Pack your bag of work clothes and other items you’ll need the night before. This minimizes time and logistical details on the morning of your commute.

• Contact the Summit County Open Space and Trails Department ahead of time if you need assistance planning a bicycle route to your office.

• Check the weather forecast the night before; early morning bike rides at high elevations may require a warm outer layer and gloves. Be prepared for afternoon showers on the way home.

• Don’t forget your helmet!

For more information, contact Katie Kent at the Summit County Open Space and Trails Department at 970-668-4092 or katiek@co.summit.co.usRead on...

Posted on: June 17, 2014

New Recpath Signage to Improve Safety and Wayfinding

$30,000 grant from Summit Biking Inc. will help fund mile markers, informational kiosks and directional signage

$30,000 grant from Summit Biking Inc. will help fund mile markers, informational kiosks and directional signage

Contact: Katie Kent, Summit County Open Space & Trails, 970-668-4092

SUMMIT COUNTY – The Summit County Recpath system will soon feature new signage to enhance safety and wayfinding for cyclists and other users along the 55-plus miles of paved recreational pathways.

The signage improvements, including mile markers, kiosks and directional signage, will be funded in part by a $30,000 grant from Summit Biking Inc., a local nonprofit that works to enhance recreational cycling opportunities in Summit County.

The local jurisdictions that maintain portions of the pathway system have identified five main routes, based on a “hub and spoke” configuration. The loop around Dillon Reservoir serves as the hub, with four spokes leading to Keystone, Breckenridge, Silverthorne and Copper Mountain/Vail Pass. The intersection of the Recpath with Marina Road in Frisco will be designated as Mile 0.0.

The initiative to install mile markers along the Recpath is part of a larger collaboration between the Summit County Open Space and Trails Department and the county’s emergency medical services agencies to better “address” the Recpath. Doing so will make accident locations easier to identify and relay to EMS agencies for faster response times. Mile markers and directional signs also help recreational users identify distances traveled and landmarks along the way.

Along with mileage information, decals with logos will be posted on the mile markers to identify the managing agency in each location. The signage installation is scheduled to be completed by fall 2014.

Summit Biking Inc. is a 501(c)7 organization that has been in existence since 2005. Its mission is to enhance recreational bicycling opportunities in Summit County by connecting fellow cyclists in a fun and organized environment and by serving as a fundraising resource. The organization’s primary fundraising source, in coordination with Avalanche Physical Therapy, is organizing and hosting the annual Circle the Summit Bob Guthrie Memorial Ride.

Summit Biking grant funding awarded to Summit County and associated partners for this Recpath improvement project was generated through the nonprofit’s fundraising efforts, primarily the Circle the Summit ride.

“Summit Biking Inc. has been a key partner in expanding and maintaining the Recpath system over time,” Summit County Commissioner Dan Gibbs said. “This grant money represents a unique opportunity to work together with multiple jurisdictions within Summit County to provide information on the system for locals and visitors. Its continued support of the Recpath system creates tangible improvements to this important community asset.”

Summit County and its Recpath partner agencies rely heavily on grant funding to assist with Recpath enhancement projects, mainly because of the high costs of new construction and maintenance on the 55-plus miles of existing pathway infrastructure. Matching funds for the Summit Biking grant were provided by Summit County government, the towns of Breckenridge and Silverthorne and Dillon Reservoir Recreation Committee (DRReC). Partners in the signage project include the towns of Dillon, Frisco, Silverthorne and Breckenridge; Keystone Resort; and DRReC, which is comprised of Summit County, the towns of Dillon and Frisco, the U.S. Forest Service and Denver Water.

As with all improvement projects, Summit County reminds Recpath users to slow down as they approach maintenance activities and to always heed warning signs or the directions of authorized personnel.

For more information, contact Katie Kent at the Summit County Open Space and Trails Department at 970-668-4092 or katiek@co.summit.co.usRead on...

Posted on: June 11, 2014

Montezuma Road Open for Limited Vehicle Access

Summit County Road and Bridge workers set an emergency bridge over the Snake River to restore vehicle access to the town of Montezuma after flooding washed out Montezuma Road. June 6, 2014

A single-lane emergency road and temporary bridge restore local access to town after flooding

A single-lane emergency road and temporary bridge restore local access to town after flooding

Contact:
Thad Noll, Assistant County Manager970-389-4252

SUMMIT COUNTY – The Summit County Road and Bridge Department has restored vehicle access to the town of Montezuma, one week after the Snake River washed out a 45-foot section of Montezuma Road and caused severe damage to an additional one-half mile of road.

At 7 p.m., Tuesday, June 10, Montezuma Road opened to local traffic. During specified time windows, Montezuma residents can now travel to and from the town in their vehicles along a single-lane emergency road that bypasses the washout and stretches over the Snake River via a temporary bridge.

“For a project of this magnitude, we would normally start planning and budgeting about two years out, and construction would take place over a period of weeks or months,” Assistant County Manager Thad Noll said. “In an emergency, you don’t have that luxury, so we accomplished all of it in seven days.”

Local traffic will be permitted overnight from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. The road will be closed each day from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., as crews continue road repair work during the day. Vehicle ingress and egress will also be allowed at 12 noon on most days via traffic-control escort.

“We’re strongly discouraging non-residents from driving up here," Noll said. "This is a temporary, emergency access, and we can't afford to have a lot of congestion."

The speed limit in the three-quarter-mile construction zone is 15 miles per hour, except on the emergency road and temporary bridge, where the speed limit is 5 miles per hour. Traffic lights are positioned at either end of the single-lane construction zone, with 3.5-minute red lights, to facilitate travel in both directions.

Summit Stage shuttle service between the roadblock and the washout site will continue until further notice at 8 a.m., 12 noon and 5 p.m. daily.

“We really appreciate the patience and cooperation the residents of Montezuma have demonstrated throughout this incident,” said Capt. Jaime FitzSimons of the Summit County Sheriff's Office. “From the very start, they came together for one another and with the road crews and our deputies. We also want to recognize Montezuma Mayor Lesley Davis, who has been such a fantastic liaison and has devoted so much of her time to this response.”

The Montezuma Road washout occurred on Tuesday, June 3, cutting off travel to and from the town. The Summit County Road and Bridge Department began clearing the road of large quantities of rock and other debris Tuesday afternoon to facilitate voluntary evacuations from the town of Montezuma. Road and Bridge workers also removed a blocked culvert that was impeding the flow of the Snake River under the road.

On Wednesday, June 4, crews began building an emergency road to bypass the washout; they obtained a footbridge from Dillon Marina and installed it just upstream of the site so that residents could access the town by foot. A 15-ton emergency highway bridge obtained from Jackson County was set over the river on Friday evening, and crews have since been working to make the bridge, emergency road and damaged sections of Montezuma Road safe for use by passenger vehicles.

“The Summit County Road and Bridge crew has done a tremendous job in their response to the washout,” said Ryan Nataluk, Bridge Inspection Program Manager for Stantec Consulting Services, the engineering firm that signed off on the emergency bridge. “Building a usable road through the forest, and then transporting and setting two 15,000-pound bridge sections over a remote river during peak runoff with minimal heavy-lifting equipment in just a few days is quite a feat.”

Vehicular and pedestrian travel to and from the town is for local traffic only. U.S. Forest Service trails and trailheads east of the washout are closed to all recreational uses until further notice.

# #Read on...

Posted on: May 29, 2014

Get Your High Water Preparedness Information Packet

Find information on local resources, historical flood data, sand bag locations and safety tips.

The Summit County High Water Preparedness Information packet provides information on local resources, historical flood data, sand bag locations and safety tips, to help you prepare for flooding.

Summit County's terrain features and natural waterways can accommodate normal snowpack runoff and rain-caused river flow. The high snowpack totals in 2014 merit monitoring of streamflows and weather conditions in preparation for flooding. Download our High Water Preparedness Information packet, and find additional information from the Summit County Office of Emergency ManagementRead on...

Posted on: June 4, 2014

Montezuma Flood Washes Out Road

Road washout blocks access to town

Road washout blocks access to town

Contact: Julie Sutor
(970) 409-9461JulieS@co.summit.co.us

MONTEZUMA – High water levels on the Snake River and Peru Creek have caused one-half mile of serious damage on Montezuma Road near the Peru Creek Trailhe...Read on...

Posted on: May 22, 2014

Summit County Announces Schedule for Recpath Work

Avalanche debris covers the Recpath in Tenmile Canyon

Maintenance between Swan Mountain Road and Keystone begins May 22; avalanche debris removal in progress on Tenmile Recpath

Maintenance between Swan Mountain Road and Keystone begins May 22; avalanche debris removal in progress on Tenmile Recpath

Contact:
Katie Kent, Summit County Open Space and Trails, 970-668-4092

SUMMIT COUNTY — Repaving and other improvements to the S...Read on...

Posted on: May 20, 2014

Summit County Applauds State for Tackling Health Insurance Costs in Mountain Communities

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services approves shifts in Colorado’s geographic rating areas

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services approves shifts in Colorado’s geographic rating areas

Contacts:
Dan Gibbs, Summit County Commissioner: 970-333-4707, dang@co.summit.co.us Thomas Davidson, Summit County Commissioner: 970-333-9817, thomasd@co...Read on...

Posted on: May 19, 2014

Deadline to Change Party Affiliation for Primary Election May 23

The Summit County Election Office will mail ballots to all affiliated voters June 2; unaffiliated voters will not automatically receive ballots

The Summit County Election Office will mail ballots to all affiliated voters June 2; unaffiliated voters will not automatically receive ballots

Contact:
Kathy Neel, Summit County Clerk and Recorder 970-453-3471, kathyn@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY...Read on...

Posted on: May 2, 2014

State Announces Proposal to Address High Health Insurance Costs in Mountains

Summit BOCC urges local residents to weigh in on state’s recommendation to adjust geographic rating system; deadline for public comment less than one week away

Summit BOCC urges local residents to weigh in on state’s recommendation to adjust geographic rating system; deadline for public comment less than one week away

Contacts: Dan Gibbs, Summit County Commissioner: 970-333-4707, dang@co.summit.co.us Thomas D...Read on...

Posted on: April 1, 2014

Annual Prescription Take-Back at the 9Health Fair

Summit County urges residents to help prevent substance abuse and protect local ecosystems by dropping off unused and expired medications Saturday, April 5

For Immediate Release:
April 1, 2014

Contact: Jordan Schultz, Coordinator, Healthy Futures Initiative, Summit County Youth and Family Services
970-668-9196; jordans@co.summit.co.us

Summit County urges residents to help prevent substance abuse an...Read on...

Posted on: March 31, 2014

Summit Head Start Classrooms Score Among Top 10 Percent in Nation

Summit County Head Start classrooms scored within the top 10 percent nationally in federal assessments of teacher-child interactions

For Immediate Release:
March 31, 2014

Contacts: Elizabeth Edgar Lowe, Director, Summit County Early Head Start and Head Start Programs
970-513-1170, ext. 305; elowe@earlychildhoodoptions.org

Julie McCluskie, Communications Coordinator, Summit Sc...Read on...

Posted on: March 26, 2014

Summit County Encourages Residents to Test Homes for Radon Before Warmer Weather Arrives

Summit County has high levels of this carcinogen; free test kits are available

Contact:
Maya Kulick, Senior Environmental Health Specialist, Summit County Environmental Health970-668-4070, mayak@co.summit.co.us

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County government is encouraging residents to test their homes for radon before summer arriv...Read on...

Posted on: March 20, 2014

Answers to Frequently Asked Questions on Local Marijuana Use

The Summit BOCC and the Summit County Sheriff’s Office help clarify locations where marijuana use is permitted and provide residents and visitors with guidance related to marijuana in unincorporated Summit County.

For Immediate Release:
March 20, 2014

Contact:Tracy LeClair, Summit County Sheriff’s Office
970-389-2475 (cell); TracyL@co.summit.co.us

Summit County Provides Answers to Frequently Asked Questions
on Local Marijuana Use, Purchase and Possess...
Read on...

Posted on: March 11, 2014

Summit BOCC Ratifies Agreement with Red, White & Blue Fire District

For Immediate Release:
March 11, 2014

Contact:Summit County Manager Gary Martinez
970-453-3401, garym@co.summit.co.us

Summit BOCC Ratifies Agreement with Red, White & Blue Fire District to Improve Efficiency of Ambulance Operations
Changes to agencies’ existing mutual aid agreement could yield significant cost savings

SUMMIT COUNTY – The Summit Board of County Commissioners today ratified changes to the county’s mutual aid agreement with the Red, White & Blue Fire District, strengthening the two agencies’ existing partnership in providing ambulance services in Summit County. The agreement will make for better use of existing resources, with new opportunities for reduced operating costs.

Under the new agreement, Red, White & Blue will be the first agency to respond to 911 calls for ambulance service in its district, which covers 140 square miles between Hoosier Pass and Frisco town limits. Summit County Ambulance Service (SCAS) will assume simultaneous and second-call coverage inside the district, beginning on or about May 1. Currently, SCAS has first-call status throughout all of Summit County, including inside the Red, White & Blue Fire Protection District.

“In the face of growing SCAS budget deficits, we have an obligation to our community to identify funding and operational strategies to reduce this shortfall, without compromising the level of service patients receive,” Commissioner Thomas Davidson said. “This enhanced relationship with Red, White & Blue is a common-sense, fiscally responsible move that we cannot pass up.”

The change, to be phased in gradually from mid-March through early May, will take better advantage of equipment and personnel at the fire district, while reducing demands on SCAS. SCAS will retain first-call status in all areas of Summit County outside the Red, White & Blue district. SCAS will also continue to assume primary ambulance service for patient transports between medical facilities, including from Breckenridge Medical Center to Summit Medical Center, and continue to provide all out-of-county transports. Red, White & Blue medic units will be available for out-of-county transports only in extreme situations or mass casualty incidents.

As the second-call agency in the greater Breckenridge area, the Red, White & Blue Fire District has found its ambulance and paramedics to be underused. By moving to first-call status, the district will be better able to make full use of its resources and simultaneously reduce SCAS operating costs.

“We acknowledge that operational changes of this nature can generate concerns among our staff who provide emergency medical services, but we have no immediate plans to make changes in SCAS staffing levels,” County Manager Gary Martinez said. “We appreciate our staff’s hard work in implementing these changes in the interest of ensuring the financial sustainability of this critical public service. As we move forward under the new agreement, we will continue to monitor call volumes and to evaluate staffing levels in a thoughtful and open manner, with dialogue among all relevant stakeholders.”

SCAS provides countywide ambulance service, offering transport to medical facilities, critical care, first responder services, search-and-rescue paramedic response, and communitywide injury-prevention programs. Prior to 2005, SCAS fee-based revenues reliably covered the service’s expenses. But with the 2005 opening of St. Anthony’s Summit Medical Center, a significantly greater depth and breadth of medical services became available locally, and out-of-county patient transports dropped off, thereby reducing revenue to the ambulance system. The economic recession, increases in operating costs, limited federal reimbursement rates and declining collection rates from patients have compounded SCAS’ financial challenges.

Between 2011 and 2013, SCAS deficits averaged more than $460,000 annually; the gap is projected to grow to more than $1 million per year within the next four years. In response, Summit County has been using General Fund dollars to subsidize SCAS operations since 2012. However, because of the recent declines in assessed property values, and the TABOR Amendment’s prohibition on mill levy increases to retain revenue levels, Summit County’s property tax revenues have dropped substantially in recent years.

While the new agreement between Summit County and Red, White & Blue will ameliorate SCAS financial deficits, it won’t erase them altogether. The BOCC will continue to explore additional strategies to ensure that the service operates sustainably in the long run, including through potential partnerships with other EMS providers throughout the countyRead on...

Posted on: March 5, 2014

Summit BOCC Pushes State to Address High Health Insurance Costs in Resort Region

For Immediate Release:
March 5, 2014

Contact:Karn Stiegelmeier, Commissioner: 970-471-2298, karns@co.summit.co.us
Thomas Davidson, Commissioner: 970-333-9817, thomasd@co.summit.co.usDan Gibbs, Commissioner: 970-333-4707, dang@co.summit.co.us

T...Read on...

Posted on: February 25, 2014

New Glass Recycling Program in Summit County

For Immediate Release
February 25, 2014

Contact:Aaron Byrne, Summit County Resource Allocation Park, 468-9263 x 12
Jennifer Santry, High Country Conservation Center, 668-5703

Summit County is excited to announce a new program called...Read on...

Posted on: February 19, 2014

Summit County and Red, White & Blue Fire Dist. Working on Agreement to Improve Efficiency & Service

For Immediate Release:
Feb. 19, 2014

Contact:Chief Jim Keating, Red, White & Blue Fire District
970-389-9600, jkeating@rwbfire.orgSummit County Manager, Gary Martinez
970-453-3401, garym@co.summit.co.us

Summit County and Red, White & Blue Fire District Working on Agreement to Improve Efficiency and Service of Ambulance Operations

New agreement could yield significant cost savings

BRECKENRIDGE – Summit County government and the Red, White & Blue Fire District are collaborating on a new agreement that would strengthen the two agencies’ existing partnership in providing ambulance services in Summit County. The agreement would make for better use of existing resources, improved customer service and reduced operating costs.

Under the new agreement, Red, White & Blue would be the first agency to respond to 911 calls for ambulance service in its district, which covers 140 square miles between Hoosier Pass and Frisco town limits. Summit County Ambulance Service (SCAS) would assume simultaneous and second-call coverage inside the district. Currently, SCAS has first-call status throughout all of Summit County, including in the Red, White & Blue Fire Protection District.

The change, planned to be phased in gradually throughout the spring, would take better advantage of equipment and personnel at the fire district, while reducing demands on SCAS. SCAS would retain first-call status in all areas of Summit County outside the Red, White & Blue district. SCAS would also continue to assume primary ambulance service for patient transports between medical facilities, including from Breckenridge Medical Center to Summit Medical Center, and continue to provide all out-of-county transports.

“As operating costs for emergency medical services (EMS) continue to climb, it’s our job to seek out ways to operate more efficiently, while maintaining excellent service,” Summit County Commissioner Dan Gibbs said. “Through this new agreement, we’re taking a meaningful step toward addressing the considerable financial strains faced by SCAS.”

As the second-call agency in the greater Breckenridge area, the Red, White & Blue Fire District has found its ambulance and paramedics to be underused. By moving to first-call status, the district would be better able to make full use of its resources and simultaneously reduce SCAS operating costs. The move also has the potential to reduce ambulance response times, as a higher proportion of calls from within the district will be addressed by the Breckenridge-based Red, White & Blue ambulance.

“By adding another 24-7-365 ambulance into the EMS system, this enhanced partnership with SCAS is going to allow us to do a better job serving the residents and visitors in our district,” Red, White & Blue Fire Chief Jim Keating said. “And together, we’re being better stewards of public resources for the county as a whole.”

SCAS provides countywide ambulance service, offering transport to medical facilities, critical care, first responder services, search-and-rescue paramedic response, and communitywide injury-prevention programs. Prior to 2005, SCAS fee-based revenues reliably covered the service’s expenses. But with the 2005 opening of St. Anthony’s Summit Medical Center, a significantly greater depth and breadth of medical services became available locally, and out-of-county patient transports dropped off, thereby reducing revenue to the ambulance system. The economic recession, increases in operating costs, limited federal reimbursement rates and declining collection rates from patients have compounded SCAS’ financial challenges.

Between 2011 and 2013, SCAS deficits averaged more than $460,000 annually; the gap is projected to grow to more than $1 million per year within the next four years. In response, Summit County has been using General Fund dollars to subsidize SCAS operations since 2012. However, because of the recent declines in assessed property values, and the TABOR Amendment’s prohibition on mill levy increases to retain revenue levels, Summit County’s property tax revenues have dropped substantially in recent years.

“Continued subsidization of emergency services by the county’s General Fund is simply not sustainable under TABOR’s current economic straightjacket,” County Commissioner Thomas Davidson said. “Something has got to change and change soon, even with the enhanced cooperation between our agencies and the resulting cost savings we expect to achieve.”While the new agreement between Summit County and Red, White & Blue would ameliorate SCAS financial deficits, it would not erase them altogether.

“In regard to the financial sustainability of our public ambulance services, this agreement certainly stands to help, but it doesn’t fix the problem,” County Commissioner Karn Stiegelmeier said. “We still have work to do when it comes to identifying long-term financial solutions to maintaining our current standards of high-quality care and service.”

In addition to its partnership with Red, White & Blue, SCAS works cooperatively with Lake Dillon Fire Protection District (LDFPD) and Copper Mountain Fire Department on activities such as training, quality improvement, wildland disaster preparedness, grants, crew housing, and a two-tiered response to medical emergencies.

“LDFPD looks forward to future discussions aimed at furthering our collaborations to advance the effective and efficient utilization of EMS resources provided by SCAS and the county’s fire districts,” LDFPD Chief Dave Parmley said.

# #Read on...

Posted on: February 17, 2014

Recent Heavy Snowfall Requires Attention to Safe Snow Removal

Summit County urges residents, businesses and plowing contractors to help ensure snow removal is safe, efficient and effective

Contact:
John Polhemus, Road & Bridge Director
970-668-4231

SUMMIT COUNTY, CO — Heavy snowfall in recent weeks has put snow-removal and snow-storage efforts into high gear for Summit County’s public agencies, as well as for residents, businesses, and plowing contractors. The Summit County Road and Bridge Department is urging the community to cooperate with the county’s snow-removal efforts and to comply with local and state snow-removal requirements, which are critical to public safety in winter months.

On county roads and other rights of way, clearing snow is an important function of the Summit County Road and Bridge Department, allowing for safe passage of drivers and pedestrians. The county reminds residents and businesses that snow removal on private property is the responsibility of the property owner. The county asks residents and businesses to abide by standing regulations and safety recommendations to make this snowy winter as trouble free as possible.

We all came here for the snow, but let’s remember that making it relatively easy for all of us to get around in that snow takes a lot of time and expense. Dealing with snow in our driveways and sidewalks sometimes makes for an additional task that we’d rather not undertake, but please remember that our snowplow crews are doing their best during long hours in the plow to make the roads safe and passable for our residents and visitors.

“We want to thank residents and businesses for their cooperation,” said Road and Bridge Department Director John Polhemus. “Especially in this time of heavy snowfall, it’s important that we all work together to keep our roads safe and clear. Here are some answers to some frequently asked questions about snowplowing operations that might provide some insight into what we do.”

Summit County Snow Plowing Info

During the winter, County Road & Bridge crews work 7 days a week to clear snow and ice on County roads to keep them passable. Here are a few simple answers to frequently asked questions about snowplowing operations that can help you understand why things are done the way they are.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

When will my road get plowed?
There is a priority system for clearing County roads. The first priority roads are those that serve as arterials to connect one part of the County to another, such as the Dam Road or Swan Mountain Road, as well as those that serve as major emergency routes for ambulance and fire. The next priority is for roads that are served by the Summit Stage or school buses to help provide critical mobility options for getting around. Lastly are those roads that provide local access to residences. On weekends and holidays, County Road & Bridge staff is focused on those high priority roads, so residents should not expect snowplow service on the weekends unless we are in the midst of a major storm.

Why isn’t my road plowed when other roads in the County are?
Roads are plowed on a priority basis dependent on weather conditions and local fluctuations in snow amounts. Deep drifting can occur anywhere and County staff may not be aware of it, so we welcome calls to the department to inform us of issues in your area. You can call Road & Bridge at 970-668-3590.

Why can’t the snowplow driver change the angle or lift his blade to avoid plowing snow into my driveway?
This is one of the most misunderstood issues faced by any department in the snowplowing business! Keeping the road clear for travel is the primary goal of the snowplow operator, and the idea that a snowplow blade angle can be changed to keep snow from going in the driveway entrance is a common myth. The snow has to go somewhere and lifting or turning the plow blade at every driveway entrance would create a ridge of snow in the road, and would lengthen plowing time considerably. With the quantity of driveways in many of our residential neighborhoods, the amount of time it would take to relocate the plow blade angle and push the snow somewhere else (it has to go somewhere!) makes it infeasible to try and blade snow away from driveways. Please be understanding and remember that the roads are the priority.

After my driveway has been plowed the snowplow driver plows snow back onto my driveway. Who is responsible for clearing the snow?
Once again, each property owner or resident is responsible for clearing their driveway. Also remember that driveways are only an easement onto County roads and are the responsibility of the property owner to clear and maintain.

Why can’t I just put the snow from my driveway into the road so the snowplow can remove it?
Pushing or shoveling snow onto the road not only makes plowing more difficult for road crews, but can cause a dangerous obstacle in the roadway or a nuisance to your neighbors. It can also create problems in the spring after snow has been plowed into roadside ditches and creates ice dams that can do significant damage to our roads. For those reasons, it is unlawful to push or plow your snow into or across the roadway or into ditches. Homeowners and residents are responsible for maintaining their own driveways and parking areas and your snow must be disposed of on your own property.

Who is responsible when the snowplow operator damages my landscaping?
Most of our County roads have a 60’ right-of-way, which is much wider than the road itself. This allows for an area of 10-15 feet from the edge of the road to perform plowing, road maintenance, and drainage work. If you choose to maintain landscaping, fences or mailboxes up to the road, please remember that repairs to any damage that may occur in the right-of-way due to plowing and snow removal operations will be your responsibility to repair if you choose to do so.

# #Read on...

Posted on: February 21, 2014

Summit County Provides Background on Hunter Mine Litigation

Summit County has filed an eminent domain petition against Uncle Dick’s LLC to acquire the Hunter Mine in the Hoosier Ridge area of the White River National Forest in order to protect the important conservation values and recreation opportunities of the p...Read on...