Three new faces took seats on the Mancos Board of Trustees on Wednesday.
Fred Brooks, Craig Benally and Ed Hallam were sworn in at the board’s meeting after earning trustee seats during the April 5 municipal election.
Incumbents Matthew Baskin and Lorraine Becker were re-elected and also were sworn in at the meeting. Trustee Will Stone and Mayor Pro-Tem Todd Kearns stepped down from the board.
Mayor Ellen “Queenie” Barz was sworn in, taking the place of Rachael Simbeck in that seat. Barz beat Stone in the mayoral race in the election.
As her first order of business, Barz led the board in the Pledge of Allegiance. Barz said it was important to add the Pledge to the agenda permanently.
“We are a governmental entity, and we should honor America,” she said.
The board unanimously voted to appoint Baskin as Mayor Pro-Tem. Becker, who nominated him, said Baskin had a good grasp on the responsibilities of the job. Trustees also reappointed Andrea Phillips as town administrator, Heather Alvarez as clerk-treasurer, David Liberman as town attorney and Jason Spruell as interim town marshal.
After an executive session following the board’s last meeting April 13, trustees unanimously voted to award Phillips a 1 percent merit raise, taking effect retroactively January 1.
The board appointed James A. Shaner as municipal judge and Michael Goldman as substitute municipal judge.
Also at the meeting, Barz proclaimed Friday Arbor Day in the town of Mancos. “I urge all citizens to plant trees to gladden the heart and promote the wellbeing of this and future generations,” the mayor said.
Also Wednesday, the board approved a liquor license renewal for the Mancos Brewery at 550 Railroad Ave. The brewery will be expanding its patio area in front of the taprooom to include an outdoor covered stage, according to documents filed with the Town of Mancos.
Trustees approved the $4,140 purchase of new air blowers for the lagoons at the town wastewater treatment plant. The blowers circulate air through the lagoons to keep the biology of the pond viable, said town Public Works Director Robin Schmittel.
However, the current blowers run constantly, which means the electric bill for the wastewater treatment plant is close to $26,000 per year, Phillips said.
Schmittel requested new blowers that have the ability to shut themselves off when it is not necessary for them to run. The new system would pay for itself after about six months with energy savings to the town, he said. The board awarded a contract for the purchase and installation of the blowers to Cortez Electric, Inc.
The trustees also unanimously voted to adopt a hazard-mitigation plan for the town. Town officials worked with Montezuma County officials to formulate the plan, which puts forth a set of provisions for the town in the event of a natural disaster.
Municipalities must review hazard mitigation plans every five years in accordance with Federal Emergency Management Agency requirements.
Following the meeting, the board met in an executive session to discuss personnel matters.