Otero County Administrator Jean Hinkle announced at the regular meeting of the Otero County Commissioners today she is sending out a request for bids to completely renovate the men's and women's restrooms at the Arkansas Valley Fairgrounds 4-H building.

Otero County Administrator Jean Hinkle announced at the regular meeting of the Otero County Commissioners today she is sending out a request for bids to completely renovate the men’s and women’s restrooms at the Arkansas Valley Fairgrounds 4-H building. The bids will be due on June 23 and will be opened on June 26. This will allow time for the renovation to be completed by Aug. 1, in time for the Arkansas Valley Fair. If she does not get bids quickly, the project will have to wait until after the fair.

The 4-H Barn was built in 1978 and leaks, and other repairs have been made since that time, leaving the restrooms in bad shape. The renovation will be made with money from the Conservation Trust Fund, which must be used for approved projects in the area of recreation.

Hinkle also held a mandatory pre-bid meeting last week for the desk area where the commissioners’ receptionist, Marianne Rusler, sits. Those attending were Ralph Gjersten, who did the courtroom remodeling, and Bassett Construction, which did the roof repairs. The bids are due by 5 p.m. on Friday, June 9, and will be opened at the next meeting of the commissioners.

At the request of the auditors, the line item covering the purchase of road graders, for $336,420, was moved from Capital Outlay to Debt Services, since the graders are all in use now and have been since the beginning of the year. The graders sold off in 2016 included ’94, ’96, and ’99 models. Each district has two road graders assigned to it, for a total of six graders.

Danelle Berg has a new intern assigned to her, for work in the manufacturing and public health areas. This intern is Bonita Medina, who has a variety of experience in finance and office work. She has been working in the offices of Berg and Ryan Stevens. Stevens was La Junta economic development director and recently went to work for Canon City in the same capacity. He and Berg worked on numerous projects together. Medina is currently working on a health care partnership proposal.

As a future project, Berg is considering writing a grant to establish a charger for electric automobiles in La Junta. She is considering a location at a local motel, KOA or the Otero Museum.

Berg reported Tri-County Housing got a satisfactory review from Neighborworks of America and is considering correcting weak areas and going back for another review. She is consulting with Aaron Lopez on the project.

Commissioner Kevin Karney and others are working with the North La Junta Water Conservancy District to determine what’s next on their project. He also expressed his thanks to Congressman Ken Buck for his support for the Arkansas Valley Conduit. The support of the congressman is extremely important, said Karney. Buck’s representative will be available to constituents on June 14 from 12 to 1 p.m. in Room 110A, across the hall from the Commissioners’ meeting room.

Principal Cindy Cowen of Rocky Ford High School is working on a Department of Local Affairs Grant application to help support David Gaskill and his K-9 unit, which has been of great service to Rocky Ford High School.