June 20th, 2012, 1:47 pm by Bob Stephens
A Nobel Peace Prize isn’t in the offing, but El Paso County Commissioner Dennis Hisey and Auddie Cox, his challenger for the District 4 post, did shake hands on camera this morning during a “Candidate Conversation” on Gazette TV.
Cox had accused Hisey of “running a gutless smear campaign” against him in an email to me on June 6.
Cox accepted Hisey’s explanation about the robo-call and that Hisey’s campaign wasn’t behind the automated phone calls that praised Hisey and blasted Cox. Hisey said the calls to voters in the district were stopped after about two days, when he learned of them. District 4 encompasses southern Colorado Springs, Fountain and the southern part of the county.
Cox reached across me — the moderator for the 51-minute discussion of issues — to shake Hisey’s hand.
The handshake scene won’t rival the Camp David Accords that resulted in the 1979 Egypt-Israel peace treaty and a shared 1978 Nobel Peace Prize award for Egyptian President Anwar El Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin.
Kudos to both candidates for squaring off on a live-stream that will live on www.gazette.com. It provided voters with a good look at both men, and some of the differences between them.
The GTV series continues Thursday with Marsha Looper sitting down alone with Gazette reporter John Schroyer. Looper’s opponent, Amy Stephens, declined the invitation to join in the fun.
Friday’s finale of the “Candidate Conversation” series features incumbent Sallie Clark and challenger Karen Magistrelli, who are vying for the District 3 county commissioner seat. They battled during a three-year land use issue that Magistrelli brought before the Board of County Commissioners, and have waged a spirited battle the last several months.
Friday’s 10 a.m. GTV showdown between Clark and Magistrelli should be fun. Be sure to watch!
June 4th, 2012, 2:53 pm by Bob Stephens
The El Paso Board of County Commissioners will not meet Tuesday. Commissioners are required by law to meet twice weekly, so they will conduct two meetings on Thursday at Centennial Hall, 200 S. Cascade Ave. As usual, the first meeting will begin at 9 a.m. and the public is welcome to attend and voice concerns.
To learn more about county commissioners and see a link to their agendas, visit http://bcc.elpasoco.com/Pages/ThursdayCurrentAgenda.aspx.
May 30th, 2012, 2:48 pm by Bob Stephens
Following is a press release from the Pikes Peak Association of REALTORS, which interviewed candidates for El Paso County commissioner and decided to endorse the three incumbents: Amy Lathen, Sallie Clark and Dennis Hisey.
The Pikes Peak Association of REALTORS® (PPAR) announced its endorsement for El Paso County Commissioners in the upcoming primary election which will take place by mail-in ballot in June.
PPAR interviewed candidates and based their decision on a series of questions about private property rights, taxation policies, water rights and usage, land use, regulatory oversight, as well as other topics that affect the quality of life in our communities and the ability of those in the real estate industry to do business. In addition, the group requested they share short and long term economic challenges and solutions as well as how they would continue to foster working relationships with the city and other municipalities within the Pikes Peak region.
Commissioner candidate endorsements:
Amy Lathen, District 2
Sallie Clark, District 3
Dennis Hisey, District 4
“The Pikes Peak Association of REALTORS® is please to endorse Amy Lathen, Sallie Clark and Dennis Hisey for El Paso County Commissioner,” said Tony Rose, Chairman of the Board of PPAR. “Each of the candidates demonstrated the needed knowledge, experience and pro-business attitude that our association looks for in our local public servants. The work they have done to reduce burdensome regulations, streamline the planning process and manage the County’s multi-million dollar budget while maintaining excellent transportation and public safety services, especially in these challenging economic times, has been exemplary.“
PPAR was founded in 1902 and currently represents nearly 3,000 REALTORS® and affiliates in the Pikes Peak Region. For more information about PPAR visit www.ppar.com.
May 18th, 2012, 2:35 pm by Bob Stephens
Friday is the deadline for affiliated voters in El Paso County to change their political party affiliation in order to vote in a June 26 primary election. Primary elections are being conducted for the Republican, Democrat and American Constitution parties.
Voter registration deadline is May 29, and a party must also be declared to vote in a primary. Eligible voters must have El Paso County residency by May 27.
Ballots will be mailed June 4 to active and inactive affiliated voters of the three parties conducting primary elections.
Unaffiliated voters have until June 19 to declare a party affiliation via online, mail, fax or email and receive a mail ballot. After June 19, voters must appear in person at one of the El Paso County Clerk’s four offices to declare a party affiliation and be eligible to vote in that primary. No ballots will be mailed after June 19.
Locations for the four Clerk & Recorder’s offices are:
- Citizens Service Center (West), 1675 W. Garden of the Gods Rd.
- Centennial Hall (Downtown), 200 S. Cascade Ave
- Union Town Center (North), 8830 N. Union Blvd.
- Powers (East), 5650 Industrial Pl. (Airport and Powers)
“Our office wants to ensure that every eligible elector is provided the opportunity to case a ballot in this year’s primary election,” said county Clerk & Recorder Wayne Williams. “Many of the races in El Paso County will be decided by the primary election, as many of the candidates do not face an opponent in the general election.”
May 16th, 2012, 2:35 pm by Bob Stephens
Darryl Glenn is ready for questions. The El Paso County commissioner from District 1 will host a town hall meeting from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday at the Black Forest Community Center, 12530 Black Forest Rd.
The meeting will provide residents with updated information and the opportunity to get answers on a variety of subjects. County engineer Andre’ Brackin will speak about transportation and infrastructure projects. County development services project manager Craig Dossey will give a presentation on gas and oil exploration.
Glenn will also speak about election and ballot questions, along with economic conditions and trends affecting the county budget.
The meeting will begin with presentations from the Black Forest Transportation Committee and the Black Forest Area citizens group working to establish the Log School Park.
May 11th, 2012, 3:03 pm by Bob Stephens
Ballots for the June 26 primary elections were mailed to 1,350 overseas military personnel and absentee voters Friday by the El Paso County Clerk & Recorder’s Election Department.
By law, ballots must be in the mail no later than the 45th day before the primary. Overseas military and citizens are allowed an additional eight days after the election for the clerk’s office to receive their ballot, if their ballot is postmarked by election day.
Military and overseas voters can also select to receive their ballots by email, online transmission or fax. Online transmission was introduced in 2010 and allows military and overseas voters to receive an online incrypted link to their ballot. They are able to print their ballot and necessary materials to return their ballot by mail.
May 11th, 2012, 2:09 pm by Bob Stephens
Expanded service and a spacious waiting area will greet customers Wednesday when the upper level of the Southeast Branch Motor Vehicle Office reopens 17 days ahead of schedule.
Newly remodeled upper level
The remodeling added a third counter for driver’s license service plus a larger and more
comfortable waiting area.
The reconfiguration of the Southeast Branch allows flexibility for more counters to be added if needed.
A portion of the upper level office will also be used as an Early Voting site for the November election.
The Southeast Branch, open from 8 .am. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, is at 5650 Industrial Place, near the intersection of Powers and Airport.
Previous smaller waiting area
The Southeast Branch is the busiest of the four Motor Vehicle offices offered in El Paso County. The other three locations are the main office at Citizens Service Center, 1675 W. Garden of the Gods Rd.; downtown at Centennial Hall, 200 S. Cascade; and north at Union Town Center, 8830 N. Union Blvd.
For more information, go to http://car.elpasoco.com/motorvehicle.
May 2nd, 2012, 11:18 am by Bob Stephens
Secretary of State Scott Gessler filed suit Tuesday against El Paso County Clerk & Recorder Wayne Williams, who canceled the county’s Democratic and American Constitution parties’ primaries Friday.
Gessler believes if any party has a primary, then all primaries must be conducted. Williams believes the 2009 law allows a Clerk to cancel a party’s primary election while still conducting another party’s primary. The Republican primary is June 26.
Williams said the county will save approximately $68,000 by canceling the primaries and he intends to spend that on “Ballot on Demand Printers to improve our Early Voting proess this November, which is a direct benefit to our citizens. We want to spend the resources for the election that matters — not on uncontested races where there is no decision to be made.”
Uncontested candidates in primaries advance to November’s general election whether there is a primary or not, Williams said.
May 1st, 2012, 1:54 pm by Bob Stephens
Like a prize steer at the county fair, the Citizens Service Center is on display to visitors this week.
A group from Jackson County, Ore., is in town to see what they can learn about El Paso County’s relatively new Citizens Service Center, 1675 W. Garden of the Gods.
“The biggest city in their county is Medford and they bought an old post office building, about 80,000 square feet, to consolidate their offices like we did,” said El Paso County Commissioner Sallie Clark. “Some staff from their county is studying how we did our one-stop shopping at CSC. They want to see how our layout works, how we combined most everything under one roof to create more efficiency.”
The county moved several offices that were scattered around town to CSC. Under that one big roof are Department of Human Services, Pikes Peak Workforce Center, El Paso County Public Health and the offices of the county Clerk, Treasurer and Assessor, along with a Motor Vehicle office.
“I think it’s working well,” Clark said, “especially if you don’t have a car. Everything is in one place so it can save time and effort.”
April 30th, 2012, 4:25 pm by Bob Stephens
Technical difficulties with Colorado’s Driver’s License system have made license renewals unavailable in El Paso County and through the state.
Because of the difficulties, none of the four branches of the El Paso County Clerk and Recorder’s Office can currently process driver’s license renewals, according to the office. The office anticipates that renewals may be unavailable through Tuesday.
While the county’s renewal system is not working, people can still renew their driver’s licenses online at www.colorado.gov/vroom/renewlicense. This system can take up to 30 days for a license renewal to arrive in the mail.
All other motor vehicle services offered by the county office, including vehicle registration and titling, remain available.