City Offering Training and Development Opportunities for CMU and WCCC Students Through Internships and Part-Time Employment

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In an effort to invest in and assist in developing the local labor market, the City of Grand Junction has launched a part-time employment/internship program with Colorado Mesa University (CMU). A number of talented students have already interviewed for and been selected to fill a variety of different roles across many departments.

Interns have already begun work in the following areas:
Administration – A CMU Graphic Design major is assisting with creation of City publications, advertisements, presentations, and website content focusing on a variety of new concepts and graphics.

Utilities Department – A Water Quality Management student from Western Colorado Community College is gaining experience in the day-to-day operations of the City’s wastewater plant and learning the various aspects involved in mechanical, chemical, and biological treatment processes.

Community Development – A Civil Engineering student from CMU is gaining hands-on experience in the areas of traffic, environmental compliance, utilities, and general civil engineering. The student is also assisting with updating and maintaining water, sewer, storm drain, streets improvement standard details, specifications, and operating manuals.

Traffic Division – A Mechanical Engineering student is assisting with a variety of tasks including collecting, organizing, and tabulating field and technical data, assisting with survey or construction inspections, and preparing illustrations, graphics, sketches, plans and maps for engineering studies.

Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Division – A CMU student minoring in GIS is assisting with a variety of projects that require knowledge and experience with asset management, ESRI ArcGIS software, and SQL database management and programming.

City Manager Greg Caton states, “We are extremely proud to be able to provide these learning opportunities to the students of CMU and WCCC. We know there is a wealth of knowledge and talent in both student bodies and we are excited to benefit from that while at the same time helping to potentially further the careers of these young people. This really is a win-win not only for us and the schools, but also for the local labor market.”

CMU President Tim Foster said, “The partnership between CMU and the City of Grand Junction is exciting for students and transformational for the university and community. City Council’s investment in the future workforce through CMU students demonstrates leadership and foresight and we look forward to helping students find opportunities through this program.”

The City will be offering additional opportunities in early 2019 which will include positions within the following departments or divisions: Human Resources, General Services – Fleet Division, Fire – Community Education and Outreach, and Finance – Budget and Accounting.

If you are a student with CMU or Western Colorado Community College and are interested in information on these additional opportunities, please contact Shelley Caskey at 970-244-1492.


Contact: Sam Rainguet, Communications Manager 970-244-1507 or samr@gjcity.org

Grand Junction City Council Meeting Preview for the Week of 12/17/18

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For more detailed information on any of these items, read the full agendas and/or staff reports here:   http://www.gjcity.org/city-government/agendas-and-minutes/  City Council meeting videos can also be found at the same link.

City Council will discuss the following items at this week’s workshop and meeting:

Monday, 12/17/18 – 5:30 p.m.    City Council Workshop     City Hall Auditorium, 250 N. 5th Street

1. Discussion Topics – Items Related to the April 2, 2019 Regular Municipal Election

a. Proposed Projects Including Community Center, Portion of Orchard Mesa Middle School, and Partial Development of Matchett Park

b. First Responder Needs

c. Consideration of the Sale of Burkey Park

d. Possible Charter Amendments

2. Next Workshop Topics

3. Other Business


Wednesday, 12/19/18 – 6:00 p.m.    City Council Meeting   City Hall Auditorium, 250 N. 5th Street

Regular Agenda

6a. A Resolution Authorizing a Mail Ballot Election in the City of Grand Junction Regular Municipal Election on April 2, 2019, Authorizing the City Clerk to Sign the Intergovernmental Agreement with Mesa County Clerk and Recorder to Conduct Said Election

6b. An Ordinance Placing a Charter Amendment Concerning Cable Television Franchises and the Authorized Length of Leases on the Election Ballot for the Regular Municipal Election and Set a Public Hearing for January 16, 2019


Contact:  Sam Rainguet, Communications Manager       970-244-1507 or samr@gjcity.org 

City of Grand Junction Projects Affecting Traffic for the Week of 12/17/18

City of Grand Junction Public Works Projects3

City of Grand Junction Projects with Travel Restrictions

Horizon Drive Crosswalks Project, from G Road to I-70

  • Expect lane closures between the hours of 8:30am and 4:30pm
  • All business access will be provided
  • Anticipated completion – late January.

F ½ Road Closure West of 31 Road – Lewis Wash Bridge Replacement Project

  • F ½ Road will be closed to through traffic between 30 Road and 31 Road, 24/7
  • Detour route will be in place
  • Residents living west of Lewis Wash and Thunder Mountain Elementary School traffic use 30 Road
  • Residents living east of Lewis Wash including Allegheny Drive use 31 Road
  • Anticipated completion – mid-April.

North Avenue Median Renovation Project – Median work between 15th Street and 29 Road

  • There will be single-lane traffic in both directions, short delays can be expected
  • Work hours will be from 8:30 am until 4:00 pm Monday thru Friday
  • All business access will remain open
  • Anticipated Completion – late December.

Contact:  Sam Rainguet, Communications Manager   970-244-1507 or samr@gjcity.org

Two Long-Tenured City Employees to Retire

Community Development’s Community Services Manager Kathy Portner and Utilities’ Wastewater Services Manager Dan Tonello have both announced plans to retire from the City of Grand Junction after long and successful careers. The two have collectively served the Grand Junction community for more than 67 years.

dan-tonello.jpgTonello joined the Utilities Department’s Persigo Wastewater Treatment Facility in 1984 as a Wastewater Treatment Plant Operator 1. He promoted up through the organization over the course of his career and became the Manager of Wastewater Services in 2004. Under Dan’s leadership, Persigo has undergone many improvements and changes including the notable completion of the biogas project which allows methane gas produced at the Persigo Wastewater Treatment Facility to be used as fuel for City fleet vehicles. The project received international attention, coverage on the National Geographic channel, and is believed to be the only one of its kind in the United States. Dan served as the interim Utilities Director in 2017.

On looking back over his career, Dan said, “As Manager of the Wastewater Division, I have been given the opportunity to promote the advancement of many employees within the department. I have enjoyed being a mentor and helping many staff members attain their goals. We have been very successful in being a leader in our industry through the implementation of many new and innovative processes. I will miss the people that I have had the honor to work with.”

KathyPortnerPortner joined the Community Development Department (referred to as Planning at the time) in 1985. She joined the organization as a Planning Technician 1 and promoted up through the organization and attained the position of Planning Manager in 1999. Kathy has served as the Interim Community Development Director on three separate occasions since 2000. She has been instrumental in a number of notable community planning projects and has proven to be an invaluable resource in the oversight of grant opportunities and has been instrumental in the City securing millions of dollars in grant funding for numerous projects across all City departments.

Kathy noted, “It has been a privilege and an honor to have spent most of my career with the City of Grand Junction and to work with the dedicated, professional staff and wonderful community. On my first day of work, over 30 years ago, I tried to find my way to the banks of the Colorado River to have lunch and quickly found there was no public access. It’s satisfying to see all the amazing work that’s been done on the Riverfront, as well as throughout the City, and to have had the opportunity to be a part of it in some small way.”

Tonello’s retirement will become effective December 14, and Portner will follow in spring 2019.


Contact:  Sam Rainguet, Communications Manager   970-244-1507 or samr@gjcity.org

City of Grand Junction Recognized as a Certified Healthy Workplace Leader

health workplace logoThe City of Grand Junction has been officially recognized as a 2019 Certified Healthy Workplace™ Leader for our commitment to workplace health and safety. This honor was awarded by Health Links™, a nonprofit program of the Center for Health, Work & Environment at the Colorado School of Public Health.

City Manager Greg Caton states, “This is an honor for our organization to receive this designation and it really speaks to the hard work our Human Resources personnel, as well as our employees, have put into making health and wellness a priority. Wellness is such an important workplace foundation because not only does it touch employee health, it also affects productivity and morale, which in turn impacts our success in providing customer service to the community. This is a designation all City employees can take pride in.”

The City was recognized for the overall wellness package that is provided to our employees, which includes upper leadership support of a healthy workplace/wellness, resources dedicated to wellness programming (nutrition, mental health, physical activity, stress management, biometric screening, incentives), employee health benefits, and a highly motivated wellness committee that has worked with individual work groups to create a healthy workplace culture.

The City’s wellness program is offered to all City employees including full-time, part-time and seasonal employees. Employees are embracing the power of wellness and have done a number of creative things to make the wellness program meaningful to their individual work groups. Activities have included sponsoring a blood drive, a water challenge, ‘Get up and Move’ challenge, a hiking group, an advanced directives class, chair massages, on site yoga classes and a “Maintain not Gain” holiday challenge.

The Certified Healthy Workplace Leader designation is the highest level of recognition offered by Health Links; awarded only to organizations that have continually demonstrated the highest level of commitment and dedicated resources to team member and community health and safety.

Recognition as a Healthy Workplace is based on an organization’s score on Health Links’ Healthy Workplace Assessment™, an evidence-based online questionnaire. Health Links not only offers an assessment, they also provide personalized advising and access to proven resources to help organizations and their teams champion health and safety.


About Health Links

Health Links™ is a mentoring program that champions health and safety at work. We offer evidence-based Healthy Workplace Certification and advising to help organizations and their team members achieve Total Worker Health®.  As a nonprofit based in the Center for Health, Work & Environment at the Colorado School of Public Health, our deep experience as researchers and industry trailblazers informs everything we do for you.

Contact:  Sam Rainguet, Communications Manager   970-244-1507 or samr@gjcity.org

Congratulations to the Recipients of the 2018 Champion of the Arts Awards

Each year, the Grand Junction Commission on Arts and Culture invites nominations for the annual Champion of the Arts Awards. This year, two individuals were selected because of their leadership, generosity, and dedication to arts and culture, and were recognized at The Grand Junction Centennial Band‘s Christmas Concert at The Avalon Theatre on Sunday, December 9th.

The first recipient, Lancer Livermont, was nominated by Robbie Breaux. Lancer is the board president at Western Colorado Center for the Arts as well as a MusicSpark board member. He previously served on the Commission on Arts and Culture, volunteered in several other capacities over the years, and is a great attribute to our community. He describes himself as a “man of few words” but he nevertheless works tirelessly to speak up for culture in the Grand Valley. He received Warm Glow by Joan Anderson as his Champion of the Arts Award.

The second recipient actively and financially supports art and culture organizations around the valley, including Western Colorado Center for the Arts, Western Colorado Botanical Gardens, Riverside Educational Center, and the Museums of Western Colorado. He serves on several boards including the EUREKA McConnell Science Museum, Greater Grand Junction Sports Commission, Colorado Trust and the Delta Dental Foundation of Colorado. We thank John Hopkins for valuing the importance of art and culture in our community! He was nominated by Jen Moore and he received Holiday Night by Jim Hutton.

The Grand Junction Commission on Arts and Culture is appointed by City Council and serves to cultivate an environment where arts and culture can thrive and grow.


For more information, contact Lorie Gregor at 970-254-3876 or lorieg@gjcity.org.

Projects Affecting Traffic for the Week of 12/9/18

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City of Grand Junction Projects with Travel Restrictions

Horizon Drive Crosswalks Project, from G Road to I-70

  • Expect lane closures between the hours of 8:30am and 4:30pm
  • All business access will be provided
  • Anticipated completion – late January.

F ½ Road Closure West of 31 Road – Lewis Wash Bridge Replacement Project

  • F ½ Road will be closed to through traffic between 30 Road and 31 Road, 24/7
  • Detour route will be in place
  • Residents living west of Lewis Wash and Thunder Mountain Elementary School traffic use 30 Road
  • Residents living east of Lewis Wash including Allegheny Drive use 31 Road
  • Anticipated completion – mid-April.

Leaf Removal Program 

  • City wide leaf pick-up began Monday, October 15
  • Please slow down in neighborhoods where crews are working
  • Traffic delays can be expected
  • Anticipated completion – mid-December (weather permitting).

Sewer and Water Line Replacement Project – 28 ¼ Road between Orchard Avenue and Brittany Avenue

  • Expect lane shifts and delays
  • Anticipated completion – early December (weather permitting).

Sewer Line Repair Project – Grand Mesa Avenue Between Hwy 50 and Canon Avenue

  • Possible street closure with detour in place
  • Alternate route advised
  • Resident access will be maintained
  • Anticipated completion – early December (weather permitting).

North Avenue Median Renovation Project – Median work between 15th Street and 29 Road

  • There will be single-lane traffic in both directions, short delays can be expected
  • Work hours will be from 8:30 am until 4:00 pm Monday thru Friday
  • All business access will remain open
  • Anticipated Completion – late December.


Non-City of Grand Junction Projects with Travel Restrictions – This list reflects only the projects of which we have been notified.

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Ramp Improvement Project – CDOT Project

  • Crews will be working at the following 3 locations this week: Broadway (CO 340)/Rice Street, I-70 off and on ramps at 24 Road, and 13th Street at Ute Avenue
  • Watch for workers and please slow down
  • No major traffic impacts expected
  • For additional information email gjadarampproject@gmail.com or call 970-620-8686
  • Anticipated completion March 2019.

25¾ Road and Patterson Road Tree Removal – Private development project

  • Sunday, December 9 only, between the hours of 7 am and 12 noon
  • Westbound Patterson Road between 26 Road and 25 ½ Road will be single-lane traffic with possible short delays.


Contact:  Sam Rainguet, Communications Manager   970-244-1507 or samr@gjcity.org