On Tuesday, Dec. 17 the Las Animas County Commissioners met for their regular meeting, with the majority of the meeting being spent discussing finances looking ahead to 2020. Also of importance was an update given by Las Animas County Public Health Director Kim Gonzales regarding the Partners for a Drug Free Community.
“Last week we met up with Colorado Public Health and Environment with an opportunity in 2020,” said Gonzales. “With SB-12, there’s $1.8 million available for law enforcement, naloxone training, and harm reduction activities.
Gonzales said the conversation with state leaders included several rural counties.
“We invited four counties to come and have a convo with the state to see what they’d like to see included in the RFA to push out opportunities for small rural areas,” said Gonzales. “Two officers attended from Bent county and some of this money could be used there as well.”
The Partners for a Drug Free Community Coalition is currently in the process of becoming a 501c3 in order to help the county secure more funds to help in the endeavors of reducing substance abuse and assisting with mental health issues. Gonzales hopes the organization can be solidified before it’s time to apply for the available funds previously mentioned, she explained.
“In identifying the needs, we decided that once the RFA comes out, we’d bring it forward to our Partners of a Drug Free Community Coalition,” said Gonzales “We have our subcommittees already lined out and that will be a great idea as to where we want to write for these funds. If we have the coalition up and running as a 501c3 by that time we can write for those funds and appropriate it wherever it’s decided.”
Along with the update, an agenda item appointing Commissioner Felix Lopez to the Partners of a Drug Free Community Coalition board passed. Once the board of directors is solidified, the group will be ready to file as a 501c3.
Other items discussed at the meeting included the passing of adopting the 2020 fiscal budget for all offices, departments and agencies of Las Animas County.
Also passed was an appropriation of those funds for the 2020 fiscal year.
Payroll and bills for the second half of November 2019 for the county and for the Board of Human Services was also approved and passed.
Lastly, a liquor license renewal for Stonewall Shopping Bag was approved.